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Rear-End Accident Caused by A Brake Check

Oldham & Smith March 2, 2015

Rear-end accidents are the most common auto accidents in the country. They’re ordinarily caused by one vehicle following another vehicle too closely. If a person is found to be tailgating, they’re usually held liable for the accident. Although that might be a presumption, it’s a rebuttable presumption. Rear-ending another vehicle isn’t a strict liability offense. The following driver that hit the vehicle in front of them is permitted to present evidence that they were brake checked, and that the reckless actions of the brake checking driver in front of them was the actual cause of the accident.

The term “brake check” originally came from motor racing. A driver brake checks a following vehicle when they’re driving close together, and the front driver intentionally brakes very abruptly. One of three things happens then. The driver behind also brakes hard, makes a fast evasive maneuver, or crashes into the rear of the car in front.

What Are the Laws on Brake Checking?

There’s a reason that brake checking is against the law. It’s dangerous. If a driver is cited for brake checking and pleads guilty to the offense, the person who crashed into them might use that guilty plea against them in a case involving personal injury and/or property damage.

Witnesses corroborating the brake checking could also be very convincing. Liability for the accident might then be attributed to the brake-checking driver, particularly if their intent was to scare the other driver into backing off rather than letting them know that they’re following too close. The brake checker might argue that the vehicle behind them caused the accident because they were following too close. That would be countered with an argument that there was no reason for the driver in front to slam on their brakes, and had they not slammed on their brakes, the accident never would have occurred.

Contact Oldham & Smith in Tavares, FL

Tailgaters are aggressive, annoying and a fact of life sometimes. The best way to handle them is to get out of their way, and let them pass you. If there’s an accident under those circumstances, they’ll be the person responsible for it.

If you were involved in an accident involving brake checking, feel free to contact us. There’s no charge for an initial consultation, and there are no fees unless we obtain a recovery for you. We’ll be happy to answer any questions that you have.