A left turn accident is when a car turns left in front of oncoming traffic and it results in a crash.

Determining who is at fault in this type of collision can be complicated, since the answer may depend on several factors. Generally, who is at fault will come down to who had the right of way at the time of the accident.

The driver who was making a left turn has certain responsibilities they must adhere to before doing so. Before turning left, the driver must ensure that it is safe to do so and that there are no oncoming vehicles who have the right of way. If they proceed despite the risk, they may be considered at fault for the accident.

It’s also possible that an oncoming driver can be found at fault. For example, if the turning driver judged that they had sufficient room to turn but the driver coming the opposite direction was speeding, then the oncoming driver can be found liable for the crash.

In this short guide, we’ll explain how Missouri law assigns fault in car accidents and how this applies to cases of left turn crashes.

Common causes of left turn car accidents

Some common causes of left hand turn crashes are:

  • Driver inattention or lack of awareness
  • Poor visibility due to darkness or bad weather
  • The left turning driver rushing to beat oncoming traffic
  • Running a stop sign or red light
  • Speeding by the oncoming driver
  • Failure to obey signs or signals

In each of these cases, at least one driver has failed to comply with the rules of the road. As a result, who is at fault will depend on who was not following the law or who acted carelessly.

How does Missouri determine fault in a left turn car accident?

In Missouri, fault is assigned based on who was negligent at the time of the accident. If both parties had a shared responsibility for causing the crash, then they can both be assigned a level of fault between 1 and 99%.

For example, if the driver making the left hand turn failed to exercise reasonable care when making the turn, they can be found liable for damages. The same is true if the oncoming driver also was speeding when they crossed the intersection. Then, maybe one driver can be found 60% at fault while the other driver is 40% at fault.

The at-fault driver or drivers will then be responsible for covering the damages of all parties, including medical bills and property damages.

Settlement amounts for left turn accidents

The settlement amounts for left turn accidents depend on the facts of the case and the severity of the damages.

Missouri does not cap the amount of damages that a party can receive for a car accident. This means that, if you or someone you love has been injured in a left hand turn accident, you will be able to seek the full compensation for the damages you suffered.

For simple crashes that only result in property damage, settlement amounts can range between $5,000 and $50,000. In the case of serious injuries, settlements can be significantly higher.

An experienced personal injury attorney can help you through the claims process and ensure that all your rights are protected.

Need legal help?

If you’ve been injured in a left turn accident and need legal assistance, contact the experienced personal injury lawyers at Niemeyer, Grebel and Kruse. We have years of experience handling car accident cases and are here to help. Call us now for a free consultation – 314-241-1919.


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