Fatal Police High-Speed Chases
If you or someone you love was injured, or even killed, by one of the cars in a high-speed police chase, what options are available to you for receiving compensation? Who can you hold responsible for the injury? If you are like many people, you may think that the police officer may be liable for the injury. Is this the case? As you can tell, this is a complicated matter, so read on to learn the truth of the matter.
When police are pursuing a fleeing criminal, they may choose to break certain laws, such as running red lights or stop signs or even driving on the wrong side of the road. The law states that police officers are allowed to do these things if they decide they are necessary to fulfill their duty of arresting those who have broken the law.
To help make this safer for the other cars on the road, the rules of the road usually state that other vehicles should pull to the side of the road when police sirens are visible or heard. Regardless of the situation, you should always wait until the emergency response vehicle has passed before you continue driving.
If you or someone you love was injured by a police chase, you probably cannot file a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit against the police officer. Instead, the individual who was fleeing from the police is usually the one who is held liable for any damages. Essentially, the law considers that the individual as the one who initiated the chase, which means they are responsible for any damages caused as a result of the chase. Even if it was the police officer who collided with you, it is the person who initiated the chase who is liable.
Lawsuits filed against these individuals are usually quite successful, as the law does not look kindly on anyone who flees from the police. You can choose to file a lawsuit against the police officer as well, but you should not expect too much. In these situations and other situations where police break the law in order to fulfill their duty, they are almost always protected from prosecution. There is a history of courts siding with the police officer in these kinds of lawsuits.
As is always the case, you should speak with an attorney, like a wrongful death lawyer in Bloomington, IL, to learn what your best option is. Even if the officer is not held responsible, chances are good that you will be compensated for your losses one way or another.
Thank you to Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols for their insight into wrongful death law.