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Wrecks with Wildlife

If you are driving on a rural road in Mississippi, you could have a car accident by colliding with deer or livestock. This is especially true at night. Since the rural roadways of Mississippi are often dimly lighted, it is oftentimes hard to detect the presence of animals on the roadway.

If a deer or other wildlife were to obstruct your right-of-way in Mississippi causing a car collision, it is considered under Mississippi law an "act of God". That means that driver and the passengers are limited in their rights of recovery on the insurance policy covering the vehicle. Usually, they can only recover medical payments and property damage in a full coverage insurance policy.

If the driver is at least partially at fault for the accident, the passengers may be able to collect on the driver's liability coverage. The driver might have not kept his eyes on the road, might have been speeding, or might have engaged in another act that caused the driver from having a car collision with the wildlife. Under those circumstances, the passengers would have a claim for damages for their injuries.

As to livestock, the owners do have special duties to make certain they are not in the roadway. There is generally a presumption that if livestock is in the roadway and causes a car accident, then the owners of the livestock are liable. There are exemptions to this presumption; like a third-party tampering with an owner's fences. Each claim for injuries related to the car accident is specific to each situation's unique set of facts.

If you are involved in a car accident with livestock in Mississippi, it is important that you take certain steps to protect your rights. The biggest problem in a car accident with livestock is that the owner will not accept ownership of the animal. It is important to know who owns the animal so it can be determined who is responsible.