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Right turn from the Left Lane... Fault?
(Redding, CA, USA)
Yesterday, my dad was driving in the right lane and there was an old man in the left lane. There was a white car tail gating the old man in the left lane that had just gone into on coming traffic to pass my dad right before the one lane road split into two lanes. When my dad caught up to them (the old man was going slower because he was looking for an address)and his front left side was even with the door of the old mans truck the old man decided to make a right turn from the left lane smashing the front driver side of my dads van.
As soon as the accident happened, the teenage girls in the white car that were tail gating sped away (even though they were totally witnesses!).
The police were called and an report was taken. The old man tried to say it had been my dad that rear ended him but the damage completely supports the truth (my dads front LEFT side was smashed, the whole right side of the old mans truck was smashed, and the back of the truck was still in perfect condition) and the police tried to explain to the man that he was definitely at fault, no question about it.
My dad took pictures of both cars. As soon as he got home he called his insurance company and the old man's insurance company. My dad's insurance, Geico, says they will handle the other insurance company from here on out.
But he just got a call this afternoon and the old guy is making a claim against my dad!! Saying that it was his fault and trying to give the same story as he did to the police. Now his insurance is saying that it has to go to a committee to be reviewed and its going to take awhile because there are "conflicting reports"!
If the police report and the damages to BOTH vehicles prove that the other guy was at fault, why does it have to be reviewed?
We live in CA is there anyway that they could deny the claim and make it my dad's fault?
The issue here is that the police is not the party who determines fault. Officers can have an opinion, of course, but it is only an opinion. Typically, their opinion is given a lot of credence, but that is in a case by case basis.
The officer report and their testimony / opinion are only evidence and it must be considered in light of all other evidence. This is why it must be reviewed.
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