Car Accident Lawsuits
Car accidents kill an estimated 1.2 million people worldwide each year, and injure about forty times this number. They are the leading cause of death for people between the ages of 6 and 27. A car accident can occur when your car hits another vehicle, person, animal or a stationary object such as tree or telephone pole. It also can include losing control of your car and subsequent damage to your car. If you have been injured in a car accident an attorney can help you file a personal injury lawsuit.
These vehicle accidents can cause personal injuries. They can occur anywhere and anytime when another person's negligence causes another person injury or loss. The most common type of personal injury claims are from car accidents, which injure thousands of drivers and passengers each year. Many drivers will be involved in a car accident at some point in their life. The most common car accident injuries can include: back injuries, traumatic brain injury, whiplash, internal injuries, neck injuries, lower body injuries, upper body injuries, and post-traumatic stress. Details for these injuries are listed on our car accident injuries page.
Determining Fault for a Car Accident
All states have laws to determine how to operate automobiles. Many of these laws are maintained in the vehicle codes for each state. Other regulations are a result of legislation. There are multiple ways that these laws could be broken and could result in auto accidents.
A car accident might be caused by reckless behavior, negligence or strict liability. Negligence can be intentional (ex. Speeding, running a red light or not using a blinker) or unintentional behavior (ex. changing the radio, or hitting an obstruction in the road). Reckless behavior is complete disregard for another person's safety (drunk driving). Strict liability could result from a defective or recalled product which caused injury (ex. tire malfunction). In this instance, the manufacturer or seller of the product could be liable for the damages. Fault for a car accident can easily be determined if one driver has violated the law according to the state's vehicle code. Often however, multiple drivers might have contributed to the collision. If this is the case then a car accident lawyer who specializes in car accidents could help put together a case to help determine who should pay for injuries and property damages.
Do I need a car accident attorney?
Car accidents are very common. Many car accidents are not serious, but if the accident was serious you may have suffered severe damage to your property or person. Depending on the seriousness of the injury, it might be helpful to hire a personal injury attorney. A lawyer can help gather accident reports, medical and insurance forms and correspond with all parties involved. Car and Traffic accident lawyers can also interview witnesses and document injuries and explain all the legal statutes.
Insurance companies will have a group of adjusters and investigators who want to minimize the amount of money paid to an injured party. A car accident attorney can work for you to maximize the compensation you receive from your car accident case. Compensation for injuries might be calculated based on monetary losses such as medical expenses, property damage, and lost wages. But they also might include non-economic losses such as permanent disabilities, emotional distress and other pain and suffering. The insurance companies may offer an initial settlement amount that will not fully compensate you for your losses. To make sure you receive the full compensation you deserve consult a personal injury lawyer.
If a company was at fault because a defective or recalled product caused the car accident you may be entitled to not only compensatory damages but also punitive damages against the company. A vehicle accident lawyer can help determine if a company was negligent in the manufacturing of a product.
Filing a Car Accident Claim
Coverage varies among insurance companies and the policy you have will determine your coverage. Most car insurance insures you, your property, and other people and property involved in an auto accident which was your fault. There have been various alternatives developed over the past years to determine who will pay for the damages or injuries in a car accident. These strategies have differed from the common law concepts that people who were at fault paid the damages. It is always a wise decision to contact your insurance agency for more information regarding claims.
No Fault and At Fault Liability Laws
The following states have no fault liability laws: District of Columbia, Kansas, Michigan, New York, Florida, Kentucky, Minnesota, North Dakota, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Utah. All other states have at-fault liability laws. These laws require that the person who is responsible for the collision pay the costs for the others involved. Motorists are required to have a minimum amount of liability insurance. In most cases, a claim need only be filed against the guilty driver's vehicle liability insurance company. If the driver is uninsured or underinsured they may not have enough liability coverage to pay for your injuries. Failure to maintain liability insurance is against the law and individuals who cause accidents and do not have proper insurance can be sued and their assets taken to pay for any judgments imposed on them. An expert personal injury attorney for your accident can help develop a case to determine who is at fault and the amount of damages which should be paid.