Fighting over Parking Spots Can Be Violent

December 14, 2021

Decent parking spots are hard to find, some people have certain preferences and for then the Earth would stop moving if they were not to get their coveted parking spot. But is your parking spot worth fighting over? No, not at all. But who is to tell this to testosterone-raged drivers (sorry, but it’s mostly the guys) who rush to break each other’s jaws and collar bones, the first opportunity they get. Parking spot fights are nothing to joke about, can be very intense.

The damage sustained by the underdog or, in some cases – both parties, can be enough to require hospitalization or at least emergency medical attention. Bruises and fractures are quite common, and if someone were to trip and fall over, they could sustain a serious brain injury as well. Overall, the possibilities are limitless, depending on the nature of the fight, the damages can be extreme too.

First of all, try to avoid a confrontation when someone shows disorderly conduct, learn to look the other way.

But if you do find yourself in such a situation where you’ve sustained damage after successfully or unsuccessfully attempting to safeguard yourself, seek immediate medical attention, gather evidence, and contact your personal injury attorney to sort this matter.

Read through the whole article to understand the problem at hand.

fighting over parking spots can be violent

The Ethics Of Dibs & Its Legal Standing

Dibs is more like first come, first serve, with a small twist – the person wanting to secure a parking spot may not have their car with them at the moment or they might be saving it for someone they know. For this, they simply place an object like a lawn chair, or something else (noticeable), on the spot and remove it once the other person comes.

More often, it is the second scenario, i.e. saving a spot for someone else rather than using it for yourself at the moment, causes fights over the parking spot. But things don’t have to devolve into a confrontation, especially if the two sides know how to act responsibly. However, when things go bad, they can get out of control.

Is dibs/competitive parking culture legal?

Well, technically, no – even though the practice has been tolerated, sometimes, even endorsed by elected individuals, this does not make it legal in any way. In fact, based on records from police departments across states, this system has led to reckless endangerment and the damages have been very bad too. In some cases, things did not go much beyond an angry social media post, while in other instances, the retaliation was severe.

Fights Over Parking Spots

If things do worsen to the point of a fistfight, then there can be any number of possibilities. Such occurrences are not reserved to parking spaces of residential areas, i.e. curb parking, they can happen in mall car-parks (especially with crowded parking), outside restaurants, and pretty much anywhere else. Maybe two people spotted a parking space simultaneously and headed for it at the same time (as is the case with a crowded mall parking dilemma), and that did not work out well.

In some cases, there is no fight – one side concedes, but they can still retaliate in the absence of the other party. This includes posting on social media to shame the said person or vandalizing the vehicle of that party, i.e. slashing tires, breaking windows, denting the car, spraying over the body frame, breaking the mirrors, and so on.

But in many cases, aggressive action is seen in disputes over street parking and the damage can be rather severe.

Even at the least, bruises and blows are to be expected. In the case of a serious fight, then the chances of sustaining brain injuries will also present themselves, and bone fractures are also not as rare as you’d want them to be. Victims of assault may also bleed and sustain internal injuries leading to internal bleeding. If some object was used in the fight (armed assault), the intensity of damages would escalate accordingly.

In short: car park space fights can get ugly, very ugly.

Compensation For Parking Spot Fight Damages

Now, on to the more practical side of things: if someone has been injured in a car park fight or their vehicle has been vandalized, or both – given that they did not initiate the fight and stayed reasonable throughout, then the damages must be compensated for. Ideally, you should gather evidence of the incident from the moment you gain some control over the situation.

You should be able to get some information about the assaulter, record evidence of the damages sustained by yourself and your vehicle, contact information of any eyewitnesses, surveillance camera footage, and so on. Call the police on the spot and don’t leave until the reporting officers show up – you should provide them your input for the whole situation

parking lot fights attorney

After you’ve filed your report, and gathered firsthand information, seek immediate medical care for your injuries. You should be diagnosed with the damages as soon as possible and see if the injuries go any deeper than causing superficial damage. After the initial checkup and medical care, you should start listing your economic damages, i.e. the medical bills, costs for repairing the car, lost wages (if you were hurt very badly), and so on.

As for the non-economic damages, you’ll have to journal your experiences, note down the details of your ordeal, and even seek input from the people you know. If there was some serious emotional distress, your therapist should also present their observations and expectations in your case. With this information, you’ll be able to demand compensation for your damages.

The exact amount varies with every case but the overall settlement will depend on your:

  • Economic damages
  • Non-economic damages
  • Punitive damages

Seek consultation from an expert attorney to get started with legal action.

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Michael D. Kelly has a diverse background that provides a breadth of legal knowledge that he draws upon in serving his clients. Kelly compiled an excellent academic record during his three years at New England Law in Boston.