Rendering Aid: Are You Responsible To Help?

Law Blog

Getting into an accident can be a very scary and stressful event for all involved. In some cases, one or both of you is uninjured and can walk away from the accident. If you were the uninjured party, it would be easy to assume that you can sue the other driver for the damage.

This is not always the case. If you get out to look at your vehicle at the scene and notice the other driver is bleeding or badly injured, do not be in a rush to leave even if you are in a hurry. Not reporting the other party's injuries can put you on the hook legally, especially if the other person passes away due to injuries. The argument could be made that had you taken the time to call for help, the other person could have survived. In a case like this, you could end up the defendant in a wrongful death lawsuit.

The following are some things you need to know about rendering aid should you get into an accident:

Rendering Aid After an Accident

This area can be somewhat complicated due to all of the different scenarios that can occur within the scope of an accident. In general, you cannot be held liable for not assisting someone who needs aid when they are in your presence. If you see a person collapse while walking across the street, for instance, you cannot be held responsible if you fail to call for help or step in to assist in some way. This is because you had nothing to do with the person who collapsed; you just happened to be there when it happened.

The rules are different, however, if you did something to cause the collapse. If you were the driver in a car that hit an elderly driver who then collapsed while you are talking at the scene, you have a legal duty to render aid. Not doing so could be actionable.

Responsibility for Expenses

One question that you may have is whether or not you will automatically be responsible for expenses if you do not render aid. No, in general you are not automatically held responsible. The law is in place to encourage others to help if the need arises. However, to be responsible for expenses, the case would have to be thoroughly examined to make that determination. The injured party will have to show very clear evidence that your inability to help directly correlates with the extent of his or her injuries or in the case of a death. That can be difficult, but not necessarily impossible. Contact a law office, like Madden Law Firm The, for more help.


15 September 2017

Dealing with Estate Planning When You're Single

Too many single people assume they don't need to plan their estate. My brother fell into this category, and his unexpected passing left our entire family struggling to deal with his home, belongings, and financial accounts. It took nearly three years for the courts to set up a deal because he left no paperwork detailing how he wanted his estate divided. The situation immediately convinced me to work on my own estate, even though I'm still in my early 30's and don't have children or a spouse to worry about. Since it's a little harder to pick beneficiaries and estate managers when you're single, I collected the resources I used for making my own decisions and decided to publish them here on my blog. Use these resources before talking to an estate planning attorney so you're prepared for making hard decisions.