Parking Lot Accident Injury Lawyers in NJ
Parking lots are virtually everywhere today, providing easy access to and from the countless places where we live, work, shop, and perform activities of daily life. With the ubiquitousness of parking lots, it is easy to see why parking lot accidents and injuries occur so frequently. In some cases, an accident occurs in a parking lot as a random event due to circumstances outside of anyone’s control. However, there are other cases in which someone is directly responsible for injuries in a parking lot and could have prevented the accident had they exercised proper care. When you or someone you love is injured in a parking lot accident and a driver, property owner, or another party is to blame, you can pursue compensation for your injuries. You may be completely overwhelmed with pain, medical bills, missed time at work, and the like. Making matters worse, it is not always easy to determine liability for the accident. Was a driver at fault? Was a pedestrian at fault? Does liability attach to the parking lot owner? Navigating the complicated legal process when filing a parking lot accident claim in New Jersey can be particularly difficult. Perhaps you feel defeated before you’ve even begun. Don’t worry. We can help.
The highly experienced New Jersey personal injury lawyers at our firm can help you determine who is liable for your parking lot accident injuries and we will aggressively pursue compensation from a driver, parking lot owner, or insurance company on your behalf. Our team of NJ parking lot accident attorneys represent individuals who have been injured in parking lots throughout the state, including in Monmouth County, Ocean County, Atlantic County, Cape May County, Mercer County, and Middlesex County. To discuss how we can assist in protecting your interests and fighting for the compensation you need after a parking lot accident in New Jersey, call 732-825-6120 today or contact us online for a free consultation.
Common Causes of Parking Lot Accidents in New Jersey
Parking lot accidents can happen for any number of reasons. Some of the most common causes of parking lot accidents include:
- Cracks or holes in the parking lot: These are significant hazards that can lead to slip and fall accidents which cause debilitating injuries, including broken bones, spine injuries, and head injuries. Cracked pavement or an unfixed pothole in the parking lot can also cause car accidents.
- Motorist backs into another car: When motorists leave a parking lot, they typically have to back out of parking spots. This can pose serious risks to other motorists who are driving through the parking lot as they look for an open spot. Additionally, it may be tough for a motorist to see another vehicle if they are parked next to a large vehicle that creates a massive blind spot.
- Driver hits a pedestrian: It is also possible for a motorist to accidentally strike a pedestrian while backing out of a parking spot. The presence of other vehicles in the lot could create blind spots that make it difficult for the driver to see pedestrians until it is too late.
- Two drivers back into each other: It is not uncommon for multiple-vehicle accidents to occur in NJ parking lots, especially when two vehicles happen to be backing out of parking spots at the same time. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, one driver may be at fault, both drivers may be at fault, or the parking lot owner may be at fault.
- Two vehicles collide while fighting for the same parking spot: When a parking lot is at near-capacity, motorists can become frustrated as they look for an empty space. When a parking spot suddenly does become available, it can become a dangerous game of musical chairs as multiple drivers attempt to get to the spot first.
- Ice or snow: If ice or snow is allowed to accumulate in a parking lot, it can present significant risks for pedestrians who attempt to walk through the lot. In fact, one of the most common causes of slip and falls in parking lots is an icy patch of pavement. Ice and snow that is left unattended can also make a parking lot car accident more likely.
- Inadequate lighting: A parking lot must always have adequate lighting to ensure that individuals who are walking through the parking lot can safely navigate their way through the lot. If the property owner does not have proper lighting and a person is injured, the property owner may be liable for the injuries the person suffers.
- Improper Design: There are specific regulations which set forth how the entrances and exists to a parking lot must be designed. If a company or another responsible entity fails to properly design the entrances and exists to a parking lot, and a motor vehicle accident occurs, the owner and or entity responsible for the entrances and exits of the parking lot may be responsible.
Determining Liability for Parking Lot Accident Injuries in NJ
It is not always easy to assign blame in a parking lot accident claim. First, you will need to determine the identity of the party or parties responsible for the accident. Is it the other driver involved in the accident? A pedestrian who failed to stay alert while walking in the parking lot? A private landowner who owns or manages the lot?
When the Property Owner is Responsible
In New Jersey, a commercial property owner has a legal duty to keep their premises safe for visitors under premises liability law. Commercial property owners also have a duty to inspect their premises to make sure that the property is free from any dangerous conditions. This duty extends to parking lots which are owned or controlled by commercial establishments. A defect in the parking lot, such as cracked pavement, an accumulation of ice or snow, or faulty construction, may ultimately be the responsibility of the property owner. When the defect causes a parking lot accident that results in significant injuries, the parking lot owner could be liable for the damages and subject to a personal injury lawsuit.
In order to establish that a property owner or commercial establishment is responsible for a parking lot accident, such as a parking lot trip and fall, the plaintiff must establish that:
- The commercial property owner either knew or should have known about a defect or dangerous condition.
- The commercial property owner failed to properly remedy the defective condition.
- As a result of that failure to fix the danger, the plaintiff was injured.
Keep in mind that the parking lot owner is not always legally responsible for accidents on their property. Sometimes, the driver is responsible for a parking lot accident and any injuries sustained by another motorist, passenger, or pedestrian.
When a Driver is Responsible
Although vehicles tend to be moving slowly while traveling through a parking lot, many parking lot accidents still cause severe physical injuries and property damage. This is especially true when the lot is crowded, visibility is low, and the accident involves a pedestrian who is unprotected. If you are injured in a parking lot accident, you may be entitled to compensation if a driver was negligent in some way. Determining exactly who was at fault for your NJ parking lot injuries will require a close examination of the events leading up to the accident and a solid understanding of the laws in New Jersey. If a motor vehicle collision or pedestrian accident happens, the victim may be able to establish liability by demonstrating the driver’s failure to carefully observe the parking lot conditions and/or look out for pedestrians in the lot. Which motorist had the right of way? Did the pedestrian have the right of way? Did a moving vehicle crash into a parked vehicle? For instance, was the other driver attempting to move against the flow of traffic while looking for a parking space? Or did you turn left and cut off another motorist while fighting for a spot?
Regardless of the specific factual circumstances of your Monmouth County parking lot accident, it is important to notify the police, assist anyone who needs medical attention, and document the accident scene after the accident occurs. It is also crucial to speak with a qualified attorney.
Free Consultation with an Experienced NJ Parking Lot Accident Lawyer Today
If you or someone you know has been injured as a result of an incident in a parking lot, our team of knowledgeable New Jersey parking lot accident attorneys can help. We will examine the circumstances of your case, determine who is liable for your parking lot accident, and help you explore your options for financial recovery. Call today, start a chat, or send us a message to schedule a free initial consultation.