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  1. #1

    Default Who is at Fault if You Back into an Illegally Parked Car

    My father in law and I went out to eat at a restaurant with a very small and tightly spaced parking lot.There is a large sidewalk at the outer side of the parking lot. Clearly marked parellel parking on other side of sidewalk.As we came out of the restaurant, there were no vehicles parked behind my truck ( Nissan Titan). We sat in the parking lot for about 5 minutes talking. I checked all my mirrors and could not see any vehicles behind me. As I said, this parking lot is very tightly spaced and my truck is rather large, therefore, I had to back almost completely straight out. As I was backing, I felt it bump. I pulled forward, we got and only then did we see the tiny little car parked on the sidewalk, only 6 feet from the back of my truck. I went inside, found the owner, and walked outside with her. She seemed to know that she was in the wrong for where she had parked. We exchanged info and both went on our way. I understand that yes, technically, I am at fault as I was the moving vehicle, but had she not been parked illegally and so close, I could have seen her it could have been avoided. What course of action should I take to dispute?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    Dispute what? You hit a stationary object. You should have seen the car and taken appropriate action.

    I would recommend not taking your large vehicle to places with small parking lots.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    Even if it was unlawfully parked, you're at fault for striking it. In most parking lot situations, barring being parked in a handicapped space, there's no such thing as unlawful parking anyhow. You aren't supposed to drive on the sidewalk either.

    I don't see any defense here.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    What is it that you wish to dispute? You admit it's your fault since you were the moving car, so where is there anything to dispute.

    It doesn't matter that she was parked illegally, only that you were moving and had the responsibility to avoid hitting anything while you were moving. That is the full responsibility of the operator of a vehicle.

    Just to give some examples, what if she was just sitting there waiting for someone to come out to get in the car. What if it was a mother with a kid in a stroller in the same location and at moment you were checking if it's clear she is bent over wiping the babies nose, would you be trying to dispute anything in that situation?

  5. #5

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    Maybe the appropriate question that I should have asked is, Is there any way that it can be proven that it is a shared fault? I do not mind helping to pay for damages caused by my own negligence. She willingly pulled up behind my vehicle, seeing that there was very little space between the rear of my vehicle and the side of her vehicle, and that she was parked in the middle of a sidewalk. Yes, it would be an entirely different situation had it been a pedestrian. However, that is not the case in this matter. She was not waiting on anyone, she was in the diner ordering a meal. I took pictures of the entire scene. I did not drive off as I very well could have. So, my correct question considering negligent laws in NC, is, Can it be settled or argued that it was of shared fault?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2010

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    There's no shared fault. You are 100% liable. You hit a stationary object. As I said, even if it was unlawfully parked (which it likely wasn't) you're still responsible. It's up to you to manage the space between your vehicles. I drive a large (Toyota Tundra Double Cab) truck as well. You've got to be real careful for things close and things lurking very close and down low.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    Quote Quoting kellylehelen
    View Post
    Can it be settled or argued that it was of shared fault?

    Take it from me (the retired claim rep) you are 100% at fault and your insurance company will pay 100% of the cost of her repairs and will surcharge your policy for three years for an at fault accident.

    So, if you want to avoid that, I suggest you just pay her repair bill without argument. If you don't, all she has to do is contact your insurance company to be paid the entire cost.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Backed into Illegally Parked Car

    Ok, fair enough. Thank you for the info.

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