You probably know exactly what to do after a car accident on public roadways – get medical attention if you need it, call the police to report the crash, and then contact an attorney. Car accidents can be a little bit different when they happen on private property. Most accidents that happen on private lands, such as in a store’s parking lot or parking garage, are minor with no injuries. However, crashes in parking lots and garages can still be quite severe, depending on the size of the parking area and the speeds and forces involved.
If you got hurt in a car accident on private property, you will want to make sure to speak with an attorney as soon as you can. Proving liability can be a different process if the accident happened on private as opposed to public land for a variety of reasons. A well-qualified lawyer can help you understand your rights and pursue compensation.
What is Different About a Car Crash on Private Property?
For the most part, the steps you need to take immediately will not change. Seeking emergency medical care where needed is always the first priority, no matter what. You should still call the police and obtain a police report.
Police may not react to a crash in private the same way they would react to a crash on a public street. They also may not assign fault, or conduct any real investigation beyond a short report based on what they can immediately discern. Your attorney is quite likely to be the one doing the bulk of the investigating, as even if you do get a police report, it probably will not be the most detailed (or even accurate) document.
Informing the owner of the property about the crash can be helpful, as that person may have security footage to offer, but could also backfire – the owner may himself be liable or partially liable. It is highly advisable that you speak with a lawyer first. The owner’s potential liability is another complication of crashes that happen on private land. The design of a private parking structure or lot can contribute to accidents. Blind corners, steep inclines, and other issues can put drivers at heightened risk of getting in crashes. In some cases, your lawyer may want to file a claim against the owner as well as the other driver.
Call a Wisconsin Auto Accidents Attorney
Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd. represents people who were injured by careless drivers, whether the wreck happened on a public road or in a private lot. Our experienced Green Bay auto accident lawyers have the experience needed to conduct a thorough investigation and help you prove your case. Call us at 920-739-7366 for a free consultation.