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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Accident While Backing Up in a Parking Lot

    My question involves a traffic accident in the State of: California

    My wife and I were in my car and started to back up in a parking lot. I looked both ways and it was clear, and I also have a backup camera on my car (option for car with navigation system). I'm more than half way through, I see another car light's reverse lights blink on my navigation/camera, I honk twice, he's starting to move, I yell out my window, he's still moving, and than he hits me; the car to my right, who was waiting to reverse too, stares in disbelief. I got the witnesses information, the driver and I swapped information and while writing down his information, I was about to take a picture of his information. He immediately grabs his information before I can take a picture, says it is illegal to take a picture of his drivers license, creates a scene, wants to call the police, wants my cell phone, etc... While I politely showed him my cell phone and my recent photos, of which there were none since he grabbed his information before the camera could load, he wouldn't stop until his wife calmed him down slightly.

    My question is:
    1. Since I have a witness, who thankfully pulled to the side, who saw the whole thing, especially since my honking and yelling caught his attention before the accident, is this going to make it very likely that it will be the other drivers fault?
    2. Does my backup camera come into play into any of this? I noted it to my insurance company, but I don't know if it's worth a grain of salt.
    3. The other drivers insurance information did not have his car listed. While the other drivers name was there and it was not expired, the car he was driving was not on the insurance card itself.
    4. Is it illegal to take a photo of someone's drivers license in California?

    Thanks again for your help, and having this forum available.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    15,073

    Default Re: Parking Lot/Backing Up Accident - California

    Quote Quoting Raralith
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    1. Since I have a witness, who thankfully pulled to the side, who saw the whole thing, especially since my honking and yelling caught his attention before the accident, is this going to make it very likely that it will be the other drivers fault?
    Fault will be determined by the two respective insurance companies. It is possible they will agree to 50/50 fault, or they might argue over who has a higher proportion of fault or even all of it. It is my experience that backing impacts like this are often apportioned 50/50. But, you are out your deductible either way, and no points will be assigned to your license, so how the insurance companies apportion it should be of minimal concern to you unless it impacts your future premiums.

    You will also have to report this to the DMV if the damages are over $750.

    2. Does my backup camera come into play into any of this? I noted it to my insurance company, but I don't know if it's worth a grain of salt.
    Unless it takes and records video, I am not sure much relevance it will have aside from allowing you to see the other vehicle prior to the collision.

    3. The other drivers insurance information did not have his car listed. While the other drivers name was there and it was not expired, the car he was driving was not on the insurance card itself.
    Your insurance company will be able to find out whether he is covered or not.

    4. Is it illegal to take a photo of someone's drivers license in California?
    Specifically, no. The law requires an exchange of information to include contact information and the DL info, but does not indicate one way or the other about a photo - though the information is not entirely protected. Heck, you can go to the DMV and pay a fee to obtain all that information anyway (after a short waiting period).
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"


    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Accident While Backing Up in a Parking Lot

    cdwjava, thank you for your reply. I am unsure of something though: in your experience, this could be 50/50, but does the eye witness put this greatly in my favor? Or does the witness mean a lot less since this was on private property and it was a minor accident?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    15,073

    Default Re: Accident While Backing Up in a Parking Lot

    Quote Quoting Raralith
    View Post
    cdwjava, thank you for your reply. I am unsure of something though: in your experience, this could be 50/50, but does the eye witness put this greatly in my favor? Or does the witness mean a lot less since this was on private property and it was a minor accident?
    It depends on what the witness has to say as to whether it helps or hinders your argument.

    Since it is on private property and both vehicles were backing (though you were apparently stopped for a moment) I suspect a 50/50 apportionment by the insurers may be forthcoming. But, who knows? I'd leave it to the insurance companies.
    A Nor Cal Cop Sergeant

    "Make mine a double mocha ...
    And a croissant!"


    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    LA LA Land
    Posts
    9,175

    Default Re: Accident While Backing Up in a Parking Lot

    Quote Quoting Raralith
    View Post
    cdwjava, thank you for your reply. I am unsure of something though: in your experience, this could be 50/50, but does the eye witness put this greatly in my favor? Or does the witness mean a lot less since this was on private property and it was a minor accident?
    The witness statement does not necessarily mean less because it was on private property or because it was minor. It will have little impact since the accident will be evaluated based on the fact that "both vehicle were backing up and a collision occurred as a result". So while the 50/50 maybe slightly affected in your favor due to the fact that you started backing up first, it won't affect it by much!

    That's how I see it.

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