Uniformity in state laws and traffic codes regarding stop signs?

by JAB
(Dallas, Texas)

In the State of Texas, the traffic code dictates that if a collision occurs at a two-way stop intersection, the driver with the stop sign is at fault, no matter how much the other driver contributed to the accident.

This inflexible code rule has the unintended consequence of providing a good living to unscrupulous plaintiffs' attorneys who take advantage of the rule to fleece insurance companies.

Is this rule uniform in all 50 states, or do some states require police to actually try to determine how an accident occurred, instead of automatically blaming the driver with the stop sign? Thanks for your help.

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "Uniformity in state laws and traffic codes regarding stop signs?":

JAB (Dallas. TX):

The implication of your letter is that you have dealt with a substantial number of plaintiffs' attorneys. Moreover, you have come to the conclusion they are all unscrupulous.

Let's consider a hypothetical. Let's say you were the victim of an intersection crash. Let's also say the driver who crashed into you ran a stop sign. Unfortunately, it was alleged you contributed to the crash in some way.

In the crash, you sustained a neck injury requiring extended medical and chiropractic treatment. You hired an attorney, and after examining the facts, your attorney informed you she wouldn't be able to settle your case for enough to pay your medical and chiropractic bills, your lost wages, and for your pain and suffering.

Your attorney believed your contribution to the crash was enough to diminish the amount of your settlement, and thus your corresponding compensation wouldn't be enough to cover your bills.

The point is, plaintiffs' attorneys are retained to provide vigorous representation for their clients. If you were injured, you would want your attorney to do everything reasonably possible to secure the largest settlement possible.

While each state has its own laws, most traffic laws require drivers who arrive at an intersection at approximately the same time to let the driver on the right proceed first thorough the intersection.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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