My question involves a traffic accident in the State of: New York
i was involved in a small accident:
i was getting ready to park in a commercial loading zone (street parking) in front of a store i work (i am not operating a commercial vehicle, but this is where i park almost everyday to unload stuff to the store). before i start pull into the spot, i see a pick-up truck just finish pulling into the space before me, fully stopped, as if he already finished parking. i start pull into the space behind him. fully stopped. turn off the ignition, getting ready to leave the car. at this moment, he started to back up and hit my car's bumper. at the time of the impact, my car was perfectly parked next to the sidewalk, most part of my car was in the regular street parking, and part of my car is in the commericial loading area. (not sure if that matters)
so that is my version of the story. and this is his version in the police report:
he said he checked before start backing up, see nothing, and struck my car as he backing up. and believed that i pull in behind him after he started backing up.
I contacted his insurance company, they said that because I stated that I saw him pulling into the street parking, it is mostly my responsibility to avoid the accident. They only agreed to pay 10% of the cost of repair.
I don’t think that is a fair decision, so I decided to take him to the small claim court.
Here is my questions:
1. first of all, should I take him to the small claim court? Or like his insurance company stated, it should be mostly my responsibility?
2. Apparently, me and him are telling a different version of what happened in the police report. I stated that I have fully stopped for 5 to 10 seconds (as I shift gear to park, turning off the ignition, and getting ready to leave the car), and got hit. He stated that he checked before backing up, nothing, then HE BELIEVED THAT I pull in behind him as he was backing up, then his car struck mine (but he never tried to say my car ran into his). To me, his description implies that he didn’t look at the rear window as he was BACKING UP, that is why he didn’t notice me at all until the time of impact. That why he stated HE BELIEVED i pull in behind him, instead of saying HE SAW me pull in behind him. That would also explained that why he didn’t try to break his car until the impact. Is there a law stating that he should look at the rear windows as he backing up? Can I use this point in the court to prove that it should be mostly his responsibility?
Thank you for all your time!