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Are Drivers Making Left Turns Always Liable in Accidents?

In most cases, drivers who make left-hand turns and then cause accidents with cars approaching from the opposite direction are found to be at fault. These accidents are particularly dangerous, as they often involve hard collisions on the driver’s side of the vehicle.

Most states have laws indicating that drivers making left turns must wait to complete the turn until they can do so safely without interrupting traffic coming from the other direction. To be officially considered at fault, drivers either must have found to be careless in their driving or guilty of some sort of traffic violation. Because left-turn accidents almost always involve failure-to-yield violations, the vehicle turning left is almost always responsible for any crash that occurs.

There are, however, a few exceptions to these general rules. These are at play when any of the following circumstances are present:

  • The vehicle that approached from the opposite direction was speeding to get through an intersection before the light turned red
  • The vehicle that approached from the opposite direction drove in a straight path through a red light
  • The vehicle making the left turn started turning when it was safe, but an unexpected event caused the car to slow or stop traveling or turning

Outside of these few exceptions, a left-turn accident will just about always be considered the fault of the driver who was making the turn. If you have been injured in one of these crashes, work with a knowledgeable Atlanta car accident attorney with McMenamy Law LLC to learn more about your legal options.