New Jersey Failure to Stop Car Accident
In 2015 New Jersey recorded over 264,582 vehicle crashes. Of that number, 562 represented fatalities. Reckless or distracted driving poses a serious threat to New Jersey drivers and their loved ones.
Failure to stop can be the result of recklessly ignoring warning signs, guide posts, road signs and traffic lights — signs that are designed to ensure the smooth flow of traffic and to keep drivers safe. However, too many drivers ignore, disobey or do not see the signs, often leading to a serious collision. A reckless driver that has caused a serious accident may face a number of penalties, such as fines or tickets, and the possibility that they may be open to legal liability in a personal injury lawsuit.
The New Jersey Vehicle Code governs every driver in the state of New Jersey. To find a simplified version of the rules of the road, you can check the New Jersey Driver Manual available online.
Reckless driving behaviors may include:
- Running a red light
- Failure to yield
- Running a stop sign
- Failure to obey traffic signals
- Not merging safely
- Passing in a no-pass zone
- Not pulling over for emergency vehicles
- Failure to slow down in a construction site
- Driving while distracted
If you have been injured in a failure to stop car accident as the result of someone’s negligence or recklessness, you may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit. You may be able to claim compensation for emotional, physical and financial losses such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, and wrongful death.
It is important to note that New Jersey operates under a “comparative negligence” system. In other words, each driver is assigned a certain percentage of fault in an accident. An injured driver could be held partially responsible for an accident, yet still win compensation in a lawsuit, provided the injured driver was not more than 50 percent at fault. Damages awarded are adjusted according to the level of fault deemed applicable to both drivers.
These are known as compensatory damages, and they may include:
- Medical care: includes expected future expenses, hospitalization costs, rehabilitation expenses and ongoing treatment costs
- Lost wages: reimbursement for lost wages while off work due to injuries, and compensation for decreased future earning capacity if the injury is likely to affect the plaintiff in the future
- Pain and suffering: refers to the emotional and physical trauma of an accident — the actual pain of the physical injury and the continuing emotional repercussions
- Loss of enjoyment of life: addresses the loss of enjoyment of everyday exercise, activities, hobbies and recreation
- Wrongful death: compensation available to a family or an estate for an individual killed by a negligent driver
If you have proof for monetary damages suffered, you are entitled to recover the full amount in a personal injury case, as there is no limit on compensatory damages in the state of New Jersey, if the standard of proof is met. However, sometimes there is not enough insurance available for the responsible driver and you may have a right to collect money for your injuries and losses from your own insurance company.