A vehicle going the wrong way in a roundabout recently caused a fatal accident in Billings. A 52-year-old woman suffered serious injuries in the car crash and was pronounced dead at the scene. It remains unclear why the apparently at-fault driver was going the wrong way, but authorities did suggest that a medical condition may have been a factor in the collision.

As the investigation unfolds, questions about the true cause of the car accident will certainly be on the minds of the deceased woman’s family members. While the wrong-way driver’s insurance company should be expected to cover certain expenses, insurance companies frequently deny or attempt to minimize negligence on the part of their insured clients in an effort to limit liability.

If a medical condition triggered this crash, family members of the victim may want to investigate whether the driver acted negligently by operating a motor vehicle with knowledge of his condition, or whether the driver was negligent by failing to take medications as prescribed prior to operating the vehicle.

Insurance companies also frequently downplay the effects of emotional distress resulting from the trauma of a car accident. But Montana law provides a broad range of protections for victims of negligence, including compensation for emotional damages.

Accident victims should also be aware that the time period for taking legal action after an accident is limited by law. Insurance companies understand that delays work to their advantage, and accident victims should be careful not to allow stall tactics to impair their legal rights.

The tragedy of a serious car accident takes more than just a financial toll on victims and families. Accident victims in Montana would benefit from being fully aware of their options under our state’s personal injury laws.

Source: KTVQ News, “One person dead in Billings roundabout rollover accident,” June 4, 2012