You might believe that if a car crashes into yours while you are following it, you are immediately to blame, but this isn’t always the case. Brake checking contributes to a substantial share of these automobile accidents. So, you might be wondering if brake checking is illegal.

What Exactly Constitutes “Brake Checking”?

When a driver purposely slams on their brakes to frighten, annoy, or intimidate the driving behind them, this is known as brake checking. To avoid being rear-ended, the driver who is the target of a brake check is frequently obliged to abruptly brake or swerve into a nearby lane.

Many times, the driver in the rear does not have enough time or space to maneuver and slams into the car in front of them. A brake check victim may not be able to stop in time due to traffic behind them. This might result in frustrating situations when both sides assert that they have been wronged and argue over who is to blame.


is brake checking someone illegal

An aggressive motorist would probably be at least partially at fault if they deliberately cut you off and brake-checked you. You might be held partially or entirely accountable in particular situations for failing to keep a safe following distance or to stop your car in time. Yet, it might be possible to show that you had no chance of avoiding the collision if the evidence is convincing enough.

Is Brake Checking Illegal?

Brake checks are unsafe and against the law. This reckless driving may cause serious injuries or fatalities, but it may also put a financial strain on you if your car is damaged and your insurance premiums go up.

The negative effects of brake-checking a tailgater outweigh the benefits by a wide margin. If you brake-check the opposing driver, you risk getting charged with unsafe driving, suffering serious injuries, and being held accountable for the collision.

Brake checking is seen as reckless driving, which is prohibited under strict legislation.

Yes, the driver who is speeding and tailgating is certainly operating their vehicle dangerously, but brake slamming them is also dangerous because it increases the likelihood of a collision from the back. Drivers tend to start paying more attention to the driver in the car behind them than to the road in front of them when they start brake-checking the vehicle in front of them, which increases the risk of an accident.

Is brake checking illegal in all states, it seems only 11 states have specific prohibitions against aggressive driving, including Indiana.

Aggressive Brake Checking

Road rage is the main factor in brake-checking accidents. Young drivers frequently brake-check their friends to tease or make jokes, which often results in serious accidents. Due to their youth and immaturity, brake checking may cause serious damage.

Many people who brake check believe that the rear driver is always at fault in a crash. After all, if the driver in the rear had been more alert or hadn’t been following so closely, they would have been able to stop in time.

No matter what, brake testing is always done on purpose. This makes it simple to identify who was in charge at the time of the accident. Even while it can seem like a straightforward legal problem, any of the drivers could be held accountable, and this is why brake checking is illegal.

When adjusting your brakes, be aware that you can scare the driver in the back of you, which might cause them to swerve, crash, or at the least, come to a painfully quick halt and injure them. Brake checking is irresponsible driving, which a court will hold you accountable for because it is targeted and forceful.

Finding the responsible party is greatly influenced by the facts of the car accident.

The law does not approach the situation in such a straightforward manner. Even if you are the front automobile in a rear-end collision, you may still be held accountable, especially if brake checking is present.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) – Brake Checking

What is the Point of Brake Checking?

Tailgating is risky and inconvenient. Brake checking could seem like a sensible option if you are unable to change lanes or feel that you shouldn’t be required to. Some drivers use the assumption that the rear vehicle is always at fault in rear-end collisions to justify their behavior.

They do it for a variety of reasons. And determining the cause can be challenging. The following are a few possible explanations: indicating to steer clear of the tailboard, road fury, personal concerns, insurance fraud, or confusing the other driver.

Should you Brake Check a Tailgater?

Do nothing when you initially become aware that someone is tailgating you! If the tailgater doesn’t receive the message and slows down, keep going at the same speed. Don’t speed up or slow down to accommodate the strain of tailgating!

It is generally advisable to let the tailgating driver pass you if they are making you uncomfortable and won’t back off. If you can switch lanes, do so; if not, find a safe spot to pull over so the driver who is tailgating you can pass.

Instead of wondering if brake-checking is illegal, instead, stay on the right side of the law and follow the above guidelines.

Is Brake Checking Safe?

Brake checking is an aggressive driving technique that can be extremely risky and cause catastrophic injuries. Additionally, it might leave the brake checker with the financial burden of covering both automobile repairs as well as their medical expenses.


For more than 50 years, our team of skilled personal injury attorneys has successfully defended hundreds of clients. Speak with one of our attorneys today. We are prepared to assist with your questions about why brake checking is illegal.

Contact Shea & Shea to schedule a free consultation if you need a personal injury attorney right away.

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