According to the Italian law, Any person who has been injured and suffered damages (provided that he is not responsible) at the time of the accident is entitled to compensation for all damages. However in some situations no one is clearly responsible for the accident and so the assumption will be that the accident was caused evenly by the fault of both sides. and therefore it is likely that liability will be apportioned on a 50/50 basis (50% of the damages suffered).

 

Driver involved in a road accident

 

1. If you speak Italian, fill out the accident declaration form called modulo di constatazione amichevole CID / CAI. Otherwise contact immediately the Police to report the accident in order for them prepare a report on the incident. It is very important to contact immediately any witnesses at the scene and ask at least for their personal details (name last name, date of birth and  address) and if possible, a statement about what happened. If this is not possible, write down at least the license plates of vehicles that were present at the scene. In road accidents where no people were injured however there is damage to the vehicles only, it is mandatory to submit the names of the witnesses that were present at the accident.

It is also advisable to photograph the vehicles and license plates and any other picture that may be relevant to the scene of the accident, of course do not take pictures without permission of other people faces and/or bodies as this is not permitted according to the Italian privacy law.

 

2. If you are driving a rented car, contact the rental company and report the damage caused to the vehicle.

 

3. In the event of physical injuries, even minor ones, contact immediately the nearest emergency room in order to document the injuries that were caused in the accident. It is important to have all the copies of the hospital documents, including the medical exams and treatments (medicine, X rays, therapies,  etc.). Contact immediately an Italian Lawyer to ensure that your rights are protected regardless your call to the car rental company

 

4. Unfortunately, in Italy, many people, including the police do not speak or understand English. Therefore it is recommended to hire an Italian lawyer in the early stages in order to assist and accompany the client throughout the whole process.

In certain cases a road accident has also criminal consequences and therefore it is important to file a complaint within three months from the date of accident (the complaint may be done at a police or Carabinieri station but the assistance of a lawyer, even if not mandatory is highly  recommended).

Furthermore, the lawyer will assist the client in finding and appointing a  medical examiner in order to quantify the damages and compensation.

 

5. According to Italian Law, in cases of minor injuries, indemnity tables are used in order to determine the proper compensations

 

6. In cases of severe injuries , the court in Italy will decide the on the compensation amount on the basis of 'right and good' (Ex aequo et bono), however, the judge's decision is usually based on compensation parameters that were already established in past cases and by other courts

 

Passenger involved in an accident

 

A passenger that was injured in an accident is always entitled to compensation regardless of the liability of those involved in the road accident, except in cases where it is proven that the driver was unable to avoid the accident in any way.

These rules are designed to fully protect the passenger vehicle in accordance with EU traffic guidelines.

The passenger is entitled to claim and receive compensation for damages caused to property (e.g. a broken cell phone) and physical injuries directly from the insurance company of the vehicle in which the passenger was staying at the time of the accident, without having to prove which of the drivers did cause the accident. However, the passenger will have to provide evidence and a causal connection to the damage (body / property) caused to him as a result of the road accident in which he was involved. However, the passenger will be asked to provide evidence to injuries and damage to property that was caused to him during the car accident

 

In many cases, insurance companies will try to limit or reduce the right to compensation (even without any proof), claiming that the passenger did not wear seat belts and / or did not use them properly (wearing the seat belt under the armpit instead of the shoulder, etc.).

The reason behind  such arguments is to to reduce the compensation amount by trying to introduce the element of negligence attributed to the passenger, thereby reducing the level of compensation. Therefore, the passenger will be required to prove by any means at his disposal (even by using witnesses) that he did wear the safety belt properly at the time of the incident.

 

Death cases

 

The sort of compensation in cases of fatal road accident in favor of relatives, spouses and other relatives, including damages for loss to the fetus or fetal damage, are numerous and complex and require precise and thorough examination according to the specific case.

 

The legal team at Caroli and Di Bitonto will be happy to assist you and provide you with a specific legal advice and representation with regards to the compensation that you are entitled to in cases of road accident or any other accidents that you were involved in in Italy.

 

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By Lucrezia Caroli | Caroli & Di Bitonto Law Firm 31/10/2017

Road accident in Italy - What should you do

 

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