Does a driver have a right of way in both lanes of a four lane street?

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Does a driver have a right of way in both lanes of a four lane street?

I was attempting to turn left into a 4 lane street from a parking lot driveway. The driver on my left in the lane closest to me signaled to turn right into the driveway where I was exiting from. The next lane over was clear. So as I slowly moved forward into the lane closest to me then looking if it was clear of traffic in the opposite direction we crashed in the next lane over. I hit the center of his vehicle on his passenger side as he was trying to avoid me. He apologized to me and said he changed his mind. He didnt turn right as he signaled but changed over to the next lane and tried to go straight ahead instead. He told two police officers there that it was his fault. His insurance company says now Im the one who is at fault(I couldnt believe it!) because he has the right of way. It didnt matter if he signaled to turn right or changed his mind. Does he still have the right of way if we crashed in lane that he was not originally driving in? Doesnt he only have the right of way in the lane he was drving in and not in the lane over too? How can a driver have the right of way in both lanes and not be responsible for the controls on his vehicle or drving in a careless manner?

Asked on April 4, 2009 under Accident Law, Hawaii

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

That drivers change their stories when they realize they are liable and have a problem with their self-image and/or recognize their insurance rates will go up is not that uncommon. 

We were not there, and presumably the police did not witness the accident. The other driver's admission of fault -- if recorded by the police -- is very influential but not dispositive.

His insurance company is clearly trying to duck the claim.I trust you have reported the accident to your insurance company and the DMV if required.

Fault is always a matter of proof. If you have collision insurance let your carrier handle it and you'll save a lot of hassle and if the two companies meet and confer on the issue of fault, they'll resolve it and if they agree you were blameless and he was responsible, you'd likely get most if not all the deductible refunded to you.

If you don't have collision, you may have to sue the other driver and he may sue you.


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