People need to get a license before they can drive. In Virginia, you must meet certain driver training requirements and take relevant tests before you can legally operate a motor vehicle. These precautionary measures are how the government can ensure drivers know the rules and regulations governing driving.
Remember, driving is not a right. A person only gets a driver’s license because they have learned to drive properly and agreed to follow the rules and regulations. Because driving is a privilege, drivers have a duty to drive safely on the road. Motor vehicle accidents happen because negligent and reckless drivers breach their duty.
When does a driver breach their duty?
Drivers have a duty to exercise reasonable care when driving so they avoid causing damage to people and property on the road. They should never drive when mentally or emotionally impaired, as that can divert their focus and attention. These are the circumstances in which a driver breaches their duty:
- A driver who drives while under the influence of alcohol or any controlled substance
- A driver who drives while distracted
- A driver who tailgates other vehicles
- A driver who ignores stop lights and road signs
- A driver going over the speed limit
- A driver switching lanes without signaling
- A driver driving while under emotional distress or fatigue
When a driver breaches their duty and causes injury, the victim can pursue a personal injury lawsuit against them. Sometimes, however, their negligence or intentional driving misconduct can cause the unexpected death of a person.
Did you lose a loved one because a driver breached their duty?
The statute of limitations for pursuing a wrongful death lawsuit in Virginia is two years from the victim’s date of death. It is not the date of the motor vehicle accident. It might be your only opportunity to hold the driver accountable.