There is not a driver out there that wants to hit an animal while on the road. There are, however, unfortunate incidents where animals will make it onto the roads, and you will not be able to prevent the accident from occurring. Drivers in Belleville, IL wonder if they can hold someone accountable for accidents involving animals. They also wonder if the animal’s owner can hold you liable. Thankfully for the driver, as long as you are following proper driving procedures and are not breaking any laws like speeding, for example, you cannot be sued by the owner of the animal if you hit it by accident. Here we will be talking more about liability in automobile accidents involving animals.
Accidentally Hitting a Pet
In cases where someone’s pet in Belleville, IL runs out onto the road and you hit it on accident and it causes damage to your vehicle somehow, you can hold the pet owner liable for the damages. Most places have leash laws that need to be followed in public. Damage to a vehicle, however, is a lot less likely to happen when hitting someone’s pet as most pets that live in people’s homes are too small to cause damage to your vehicle.
Running Into Livestock
You can still hold agricultural property owners liable if their livestock runs out in front of your vehicle and you accidentally hit them. Unlike most pets from homes, livestock is large enough to cause damage to your vehicle, especially cows and horses. The key to liability in these cases is if the property owner should have had a fence set up to prevent their livestock from getting out onto the road. Depending on the area of the property a fence is not always required, if it is and one was not set up, you can hold them accountable, if not it is a lot harder to find them liable since they could claim you were not driving carefully enough.
Hitting Wild Animals
If you accidentally hit a wild animal, there is no person to blame. You can at least collect off of your auto insurance policy in this scenario if your car was damaged in any way. A typical squirrel or raccoon is not going to cause all that much damage when hit, but a deer could cause serious damage to your car if it jumps out into the road in front of you. If you hit a large wild animal, be sure that you contact the accident at your local sheriff’s station so they can keep records of animal accidents in the area.
If you have any more questions about liability in auto accidents involving animals in Belleville, IL, give our team of experts over at the Law Office of Don Carry Collins a call today!