Very few events in life create apprehension and confusion like being involved in an auto accident. Many involved parties are lucky to escape with their lives let alone deal with any associated injuries. There is also significant emotional trauma in most situations, and knowing what to do in the aftermath can be difficult. Luckily for most affected individuals, they can turn to an auto accident injury law firm for answers to their questions regarding the process to obtain financial compensation for their injuries. Most injured claimants will have common questions about their case from the very beginning.
Does personal fault matter in an auto accident case?
The answer to this question is generally yes, but it depends on the state of occurrence to some degree. Most states use pure comparative negligence law or modified comparative negligence law. Pure comparative negligence allows all drivers injury compensation regardless of fault level with their comparative negligence percentage being used to discount their claim value. Modified comparative negligence states set a bar for damages for drivers at either 50% or 51% comparative fault assessment. However, states like North Carolina still use the pure contributory negligence law that bars a driver from being compensated for injuries and losses if they are even 1% at fault for causing a collision.
What damages may be included in an accident claim?
Any expenses incurred that cannot be avoided due to the crash can essentially be claimed, but there are primary elements that are included in practically every case. For drivers, damage to their vehicle is the first issue, followed by compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and general damages for pain and suffering and mental anguish dealing with their injuries in the aftermath. Passengers typically have similar claim elements except for a physical property damage claim for a vehicle. These elements can also include all rehabilitation appointments and necessary medical attention for ongoing problems. In addition to these compensatory damages, certain accident cases can also generate punitive damage claims when there is evidence of gross negligence on the part of any particular driver or a vicarious third party such as a vehicle product manufacturer or a shipping contractor when involved in a commercial truck accident. A legal professional for an accident injury law firm can investigate the case for full compensation regarding additional evidence of negligence.
Do I need an attorney to handle the claim?
There are some accident injury claims that are simple and only special compensatory damages are required to be paid by the respondent insurance company or a negligent at-fault party. However, these are rare cases because mental anguish is also claimable when a case goes to court. These are general damages for the most part that courts do not determine as special because there is no actually discreet dollar amount associated with the problems. Pain and suffering for long-term injury issues are included in the general damage component of any claim, and insurance companies work aggressively to reduce these payouts. They may not be included in any settlement offer for those without legal counsel, which means those with serious long-term injuries need an attorney to obtain appropriate whole compensation.
How long will it take for financial compensation payment?
This is a question that varies based on the material facts of an accident case. Some accidents of obvious fault and agreeable damage claims can be settled relatively quickly in some cases. The question is how difficult it will be to obtain whole damages and general damages in
particular. The long-term prognosis of any injury often takes time to determine because some injuries can linger or even be permanent medical conditions. They can also result in a disability determination, which then means that lost wages can apply for a lifetime. Claims can also be impacted by potential future income disagreement between insurance company claims adjusters and plaintiff legal counselors. Another issue is whether or not a case will find its way to trial based on settlement negotiation impasses. Dockets are usually congested, and it can take a while for the case to be scheduled. These are all factors in a timely settlement.
When should I call an attorney?
Every injured party in an auto accident needs legal representation. Drivers are not the only parties who may have problems being properly compensated. Insurance companies are in business for profit, and much of it is generated by reducing and denying accident claims. It is
always best to contact an auto accident injury law firm as soon as possible following an accident of any type because plaintiff attorneys typically do the in-depth investigation needed to build a strong legal case for whole compensation. Evidence can fade quickly, especially when eyewitness testimony is part of the evidence. This is very important when victims have received extensive serious injuries or when drivers are being accused of a technical fault. Your attorney is often a defense attorney as well as a public advocate when cases are being strongly contested.
Contact Our Accident Injury Law Firm
All injured parties from an auto accident need legal counsel even if they do not have a solid case. And if an attorney takes the case, it is a good sign that some amount of compensation is available after all evidence is evaluated. Call our accident injury law firm today and let us put our expertise to work for you in evaluating your claim potential. You only have one opportunity for financial justice, and it is important to make sure the compensation is adequate. This is accomplished with aggressive legal representation from an experienced accident attorney.