When you get behind the wheel of a vehicle, you take on the responsibility of operating that vehicle in such a way to keep yourself and those on the road around you safe. Let’s take a look at some of the common factors that can contribute to vehicle accidents on Atlanta roads.
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1. Bad weather
When weather conditions are not ideal—whether it’s simply raining or you’re experiencing harsher conditions, like snow or ice—it’s vital that you reduce your speed. This is true of any kind of vehicle on the road. Under wet conditions, it’s harder to stop quickly. Moreover, in flooding conditions, driving at even a legal speed can cause you to hydroplane.
Your best course of action in adverse weather conditions is to wait it out and stay off the roads. However, since this isn’t always possible, you should increase your following distance and reduce your speed.
2. Driving at night
Even with headlights, driving at night can be tricky. Driving on dimly lit rural roads can make it even trickier. When you have to drive at night, check your vehicle beforehand to ensure that your lights (head, fog, and hazard) are working properly.
Distracted driving is among the most dangerous activities on the road. The most common forms of distracted driving are talking on your cellphone and texting while driving; however, any action done while driving can be a contributing factor. These activities include:
- Putting on makeup
- Changing the radio
- Selecting a new podcast or song
According to the U.S. Department of Transportation and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), roughly 600,000 people use cellphones while driving.
- 48% of distracted drivers answer their phones while driving.
- 24% of distracted drivers make phone calls.
- 35% of distracted drivers send text messages.
- 21% of distracted drivers read text messages.
While you may not like following the speed limit, speed limits were imposed for an important reason: being involved in a crash at increased speeds leads to fatalities. Speeding makes it harder to reach a complete stop. It increases the chance of losing control when making turns, making it much harder to avoid hitting both people and objects that may come into the roadway.
5. Alcohol and drugs
Driving under the influence (DUI) and driving while impaired (DWI) are both common reasons for vehicle accidents. In the case of DUI, it includes:
- Prescription medication (actually prescribed by a doctor)
- Over-the-counter drugs
- Illegal street drugs
If you’re under the influence of any substance, your ability to think coherently could be impaired. If you then operate a vehicle, you’re likely to experience much slower reaction times and risk losing control.
Bottom line: designated drivers save lives.
6. Teenagers driving
Teens behind the wheel are often responsible for motor vehicle accidents due to lack of experience and immaturity. Additionally, teens often drive around their friends, which can lead to distractions. To reduce the likelihood of your teen being involved in an accident, you should carefully monitor their driving habits.
7. Defective vehicles/parts
As hard as automobile manufacturers work to ensure that the vehicles we drive are safe, defects occur, and recalls are issued. However, some defective parts fall through the cracks, and there are often vehicles on the roads that have broken parts.
8. Running stop signs and red lights
Another common reason for car accidents is running stop signs. Stop sign violations are particularly dangerous for motorcyclists and pedestrians as nothing is protecting them from impact. In cases of other vehicles being struck, the crashes are often side-impact crashes and vary in severity depending on the speed of the driver running the stop sign.
Failing to stop at a red light is another common cause of car accidents and can result in side-impact crashes and head-on crashes.
9. Unsafe lane changes and improper turns
Many drivers don’t use their car’s indicator lights (turn signals) or check over their shoulder before changing lanes. If you fail to use your car’s turn signal and make an abrupt lane change, other drivers around you won’t know you’re changing lanes until it’s too late, resulting in a severe crash.
Unsafe lane changes are widespread and dangerous for motorcyclists. Since their vehicles are lower profile, they often make quick maneuvers across lanes.
Other instances of improper turns include turning right at red lights (when signs indicate not to), failing to yield, and not following right-of-way laws.
10. Driving the wrong way
Driving the wrong way on a highway or road is common amongst drunk drivers; however, this isn’t always the case. Driving the wrong way can easily result in head-on collisions. These collisions often result in severe injuries or fatalities.
Having a safe following distance is an essential part of being a responsible driver. A safe driving distance is crucial because it takes more distance than most people think to bring a vehicle to a full stop. In the instance of tailgating, a more forceful driver is attempting to pressure another to drive faster or move over.
These are just some of the instances that can lead to car crashes. If you or a loved one are involved in a car crash, it’s important to have a knowledgeable lawyer by your side to get you the compensation you deserve.
When it comes to seeing others in trouble, most of us fall into one of three categories – the people who walk away and do nothing, the ones who look but don’t help, and those who are kind enough to offer assistance.
If you fall into the third category and are unfortunate enough to witness a car accident, you’re going to want to help, being the kind person that you are. Here’s what you should do.
What to Do If You Witness a Car Accident
Don’t Put Yourself in Danger
First and foremost, as much as you want to help, you can’t risk your own life. Before rushing over to the scene, carefully check if there is any fuel on the road close to a naked flame, or if the vehicles may be in a precarious position.
Next, check if you will be subjected to bodily fluids, in particular blood. You can’t put yourself into a situation that could give you some form of infection, or worse.
If it appears that physically you can enter the scene, go ahead and help out.
Whether you’re first on the scene or not, it’s crucial that someone contacts 911. Police, ambulance, and maybe the fire brigade all need to be alerted to the incident. It’s highly likely those involved in the accident are too injured or shocked to have the ability to do this.
Stay around. When the police finally arrive, they’ll need to take your statement. Be very careful not to lay blame on any of those involved, just report the facts as you witnessed them.
Most likely, you’ll be a vital witness to the events. Prior to emergency vehicles arriving, somebody needs to take photographs of the scene. These will be very important later if the incident makes it to court, or there’s an insurance dispute.
Look for things that will be reported or could be misconstrued. Take as many photos as possible of the external and internal scenes. Remember, though, to be sympathetic to any loss of life. Survivors may not appreciate you taking pictures of the deceased.
Hopefully, the people involved in the accident aren’t seriously injured. However, they’ll likely be in some stage of shock. Perhaps some of the best assistance you can give is emotional support. You can do rational thinking for them, something that they may not be able to do themselves right now.
Ensure that they are aware of where they are, what happened, and what they need to do next. Calls to relatives, tow-truck drivers (if required), and insurance companies should be the top priorities after contacting emergency services. It would help if you also reminded them that for these reasons, they should contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Be Prepared To Help Out
You’ve been one in a rare number of people who stop and help in a situation like this. You’ve checked out the scene to ensure it’s safe for you to approach and made sure that emergency services are on the way. Once you’ve seen that injured parties are tended to, take some photographs, and give your statement to those who will need it.
Be prepared to be even more helpful, as later on, you might be contacted to provide witness testimony if the incident becomes a court case. It won’t always be easy to do the right thing, but this will be your time to contribute to the society in some way.
If you’ve been in a car crash, you may have a million worries. How do I get to work now? Will my back ever get better? Is that person going to sue me?
Hiring a lawyer may not be the first thing on your mind but it should be.
Is it worth it to get a lawyer for a car accident? The answer is yes. A lawyer will help you get any money you deserve for medical or other losses. He or she can also protect you from liability.
Here are four reasons why getting a lawyer for a car accident is worthwhile
If you’ve been hurt due to the negligence of someone else, you have a viable claim for compensation. If your car has been damaged, your health endangered, your income impacted, or your emotional health compromised, a lawyer can help you.
Your lawyer will help you put together a claim asking to recover for the damages you have sustained. They can guide you through the complex legal system, talk to insurance companies, and represent your interests.
If there were other people involved in the car accident, they might be seeking compensation as well. They may claim that your behavior contributed to or even caused the accident.
If the police were called to the scene, they may even be looking at criminal charges, especially if they suspect you were drinking or being overly reckless. If there are DUI charges, this is exactly when to get an attorney for a car accident.
You could also be in trouble if you failed to follow basic rules like staying present at the scene or reporting the accident to the DMV.
You need an experienced attorney to protect your interests in these instances. A lawyer can help you in conversations with law enforcement and other lawyers or insurance agencies who may be pursuing claims against you.
If these claims proceed to either civil or criminal court, you need a lawyer who can represent you, such as on you can find at SweetJames.com.
Court filings and proceedings have special rules that must be followed if you want to pursue your claim or defense. If you fail to follow the rules, you can lose your case.
Hire a lawyer who knows their way around a courtroom. Legal fees are worth it when you look at the cost of losing your license or a multimillion-dollar lawsuit.
Many cases never get to court. A good lawyer will negotiate a settlement with the other parties.
It’s rare that anyone negotiates well on their own behalf. You need to hire a lawyer who knows how to negotiate: when to push and when to accept an offer. They will know when you are unlikely to do any better, and when you should hold out.
Is It Worth It to Get a Lawyer for a Car Accident?
If you are questioning is it worth it to get a lawyer for a car accident, think about what is at stake. If you do not negotiate well, you may end up going to court, which is a long and costly process. If you do not know how to represent yourself, you could lose money, your license, or even your freedom.
Whether you pay a lawyer an hourly fee or on a contingency basis to represent you after a car accident, it is almost always worth it.
For more tips on choosing the right attorney for your needs, keep checking back on our blog.
Not all accidents may require the help of a lawyer. This is especially true if the accident is minor and didn’t cause any severe injuries to the victims. But, in some accidents that involve a legal dispute and expensive medical expenses, you don’t want to risk facing the battle without the help of an experienced lawyer.
Although a good legal representation isn’t cheap, it can help you resolve your case smoothly and get you out of the sticky situation. While every person’s accident case is different, the need to hire a lawyer from the best law firms, like Kuvara Law Firm, always comes in handy.
Below are some of the common accidents that require a lawyer
Even if car accidents are common, obtaining compensation for the injuries caused by the accident isn’t an easy matter. For this reason, a lawyer is needed to help you get through your situation.
Here are types of car accidents:
- Rear-End Collision: This kind of car accident usually happens because a driver is too close to another vehicle in front of them and didn’t have time to stop.
If your vehicle was struck from behind, you might suffer whiplash, which may cause damage to your spinal cord, neck, back, or brain. Although whiplash is a minor injury in the past, it’s now recognized as one of the severe injuries, which may cause some long-lasting effects.
- Head-On Accident: This kind of car accident happens on highways where the drivers travel at fast speeds. In other cases, it may result from the drunk driver who enters the highway in another direction.
No matter how the crashes happen, they often result in fatalities and have the potential to be devastating.
- T-Bone Accidents: These accidents can be fatal due to the sides of the most passenger vehicles are more likely to crumble and severely damage the front or rear of the car.
Vehicular accidents involving big commercial vehicles, like huge rigs and semi-truck, tend to have some serious consequences. Typically, the size of such vehicles results in more serious personal injuries, high death frequency, and extensive property damage.
It’s also worth noting that going up against the truck companies as well as their insurers can be challenging. With that said, you’re encouraged to work with a capable lawyer who isn’t afraid to take such companies on and protect your rights.
A lawyer will protect your rights, provide you valuable legal protection, and seek compensation from the insurance company of a truck driver.
Because of the lack of physical protection, some motorcyclists tend to suffer from serious injuries in accidents. Your lawyer will help know the causes of motorcycle accidents that are frequently different from some vehicular accidents.
After a motorcycle accident, you must always retain a lawyer, regardless of your case. There are numerous ways a lawyer can help victims and with the guidance of an experienced lawyer, making it much easier compared when navigating the situation on your own.
If you’re injured in any job-related accident, there’s a chance that you’re entitled to the benefits of workers’ compensation. Lawyers who are experienced in handling workplace claims can evaluate your legal rights and determine which claims you must file. Thus, to recover from the workplace accident, the lawyer can help you get fair workers’ compensation.
If you have incurred severe injuries, most particularly if you’re permanently disabled, you must ensure that your future lost wages and medical bills are included in any settlement. Such claims are expensive for the employers and insurance companies would fight harder to deny the extent of the injuries and liability. For this reason, a lawyer will help fight to get the compensation or file claims you’re entitled to.
Slip and Fall Accident
Another common accident that requires a lawyer is a slip and fall. If this accident happened in a property owned by another business or individual, you need to hire a lawyer.
If you think a slip and fall case is simple, it’s not suited for self-representation. The reason for this is that the fault for slip and fall accidents isn’t clear and the property owners are not in the business to accept legal responsibility for accidents unless liability is very obvious. Another is that it’s common for the slip and fall defendants to argue that the injuries of the plaintiff aren’t as major as they claim.
The first job of a lawyer in a slip and fall case is to get the attention of the insurance company and defendants who couldn’t take self-represented claimants seriously. However, since such cases boil down to the damages and liability, the assistance of a lawyer is crucial.
If you’re involved in any of those accidents and you’ve incurred major injuries that hinder you from working or doing your usual daily activities, never hesitate to look for a lawyer to help you.
The legal field is complicated and if you don’t understand the laws and regulations, you might end up not getting the justice and fair settlement you deserve. So, before everything becomes worse, let a lawyer do the job for you!
Despite the incredible advancements in technology, transportation, and medicine that have been made in our lifetimes, automobiles remain a deadly machine. Even more worrisome than the high rate of auto accidents is the threat cars and other motor vehicles pose to pedestrians.
One saying that unfortunately continues to hold true is that you’re more likely to get hit by a car while crossing the street than, well, just about anything. Pedestrian accidents remain a major source of injury that can cause serious long term health problems, disabilities, and deaths, including nearly 6,000 deaths each year in the United States.
These types of accidents, which most often involve some sort of negligence on the part of the vehicle operator, also remain a major category of personal injury that we see play out in civil courtrooms across the United States.
The Primary Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Most injuries in pedestrian accidents were completely preventable. Understanding what causes these accidents can help you avoid them.
The National Highway Safety Administration estimated that over 400 pedestrians were killed in 2018 due to distracted driving. This can involve anything from looking at the phone to reaching into the back seat or under the seat for items.
Accidents can also be caused by being distracted by passengers. Regardless of the circumstances that created the distraction, the driver is still responsible for doing their utmost to avoid an accident.
Executing a Left-Hand Turn
According to the New York City Transportation Department, pedestrians are three times more likely to be hit and killed by left-turning drivers than those who are turning right or driving straight ahead. This realization has translated into a number of significant behavioral-related steps, including UPS setting up a navigation system that focuses on right turns.
If all delivery drivers rethink left turns, many pedestrian accidents could be prevented. Only making right turns can avoid accidents and save time.
DUIs or DWIs (driver under the influence and driving while intoxicated) are responsible for over ten thousand deaths in the United States alone. According to the Centers for Disease Control, half of all pedestrian deaths by car involve driver intoxication.
Reduced Visibility at Night
The majority of incidents involving a pedestrian being struck by a motor vehicle occur at nighttime, particularly while the pedestrian is crossing the street on an unmarked crosswalk. This statistic is a sobering reminder to drivers to remain additionally cautious while traveling at night, and for pedestrians to take safety precautions when walking after sundown.
There is no shortage of areas from urban to rural America that lack the necessary road markings to make drivers aware that they should slow for pedestrians. Nevertheless, it is the driver’s responsibility to avoid accidents and stop for pedestrians no matter where they are crossing the street.
For pedestrians, seeking out marked crossings where available is important to ensure your personal safety. You should also make sure to make eye contact with drivers before you cross to make sure they have seen you.
How to Protect Yourself
There are a number of rules you as a pedestrian can follow to lower your risk of being struck by a car while crossing the street, such as:
- Don’t wear headphones if crossing the street
- Wear reflective material on your outer clothing or carry a flashlight when walking at night
- Always cross at marked crosswalks when it’s an option
- Avoid walking in the road and always walk on the sidewalk where available
The Scope of the Risk and Damage is Larger Than We Know
All of these circumstances can take place in the blink of an eye, and many of these accidents are never reported to the authorities. Some accidents may involve a hit-and-run. For others, the victim may not realize the extent of the damage to their body until they’ve waved the driver off.
This is why it is critical that you always collect a driver’s information, including their insurance information. Don’t hesitate to call 911 if you believe you may require medical attention.
What to Do if You’ve Been in an Accident as a Pedestrian
If you have been in an accident where you are hit by a driver, you may want to contact an attorney if you believe you may be owed any damages. The chances are high that you and your attorney will be able to ensure your medical bills are covered and that you will be justly compensated for any additional pain and suffering that was caused by the accident.
Unfortunately, life is not predictable and nobody has the power to see into the future. At any moment your life can take a turn for the worse.
You’re driving along without a care in the world feeling the warmth of the sun on your body. Suddenly, out of nowhere a car crashes into you. Unprepared, you take a hard hit that leaves your vehicle nearly unrecognizable and you shaken and seriously injured. After the police arrive you find you can’t remove yourself from the wreck and are transported by an ambulance to the local hospital. The doctor tells you that your injuries while not life-threatening will leave you unable to walk.
Paying for Your Loss
You are in denial about the accident and need the support of family members to keep your spirits up. There are many costs associated with the injuries sustained and after careful consideration, you decide to contact a personal injury attorney. Lost wages, medical-related expenses and car repairs are just the beginning. Since you will not be able to walk, you won’t be able to perform the duties required on your current employment. Living on disability is not going to pay the bills. Personal injury attorneys like the ones found here https://www.psinjury.com/, know what’s involved and how much money you’ll need to cover treatments and new housing arrangements.
Picking Up the Pieces
Your life as you knew it just a few weeks ago is drastically different. Getting up to go to work, playing with the children, and enjoying private intimate moments with your spouse are no longer the same. Instead, you get up from bed assisted, you remain seated and your carefree living is over. On the bright side, you are alive and there are many things you can do despite your immobility. For instance, you can still drive a car. Many people in wheelchairs do it. Once you increase your upper body strength, getting in and out of the wheelchair unassisted is possible.
In order to return to as much of a normal life as possible to need to make modifications to your home. The large settlement you receive using a reputable personal injury attorney from the car accident can help you achieve it. Revamping a kitchen and a bathroom by changing the height of things such as counters, sinks and appliances will allow you to use them. Expanding openings will enable you to move freely throughout the home.
Adapting to Your New Way of Life
Going from an active lifestyle to one that requires a wheelchair 24/7 isn’t easy. However, remaining positive will allow you to do more. You can enjoy hobbies such as woodworking, painting and even grow an indoor garden. Spending time with your loved ones is also possible. You can sit and toss a ball, play board games and cook together. Parks and most recreational facilities have accommodations for wheelchairs, so going to an amusement park is not something you will need to pass up.
Losing the Anger
For many, after a serious accident, it’s hard to lose the anger. After all, if it didn’t happen you would still be able to walk. Accepting the fact that this is your new life and making the most of it will benefit you and your family immensely. They are not responsible for your condition and neither are you. In many cases, along with physical therapy, therapy sessions where you are able to talk to someone can help tremendously. Opening up to someone who’s unbiased will allow you to get it off your chest and find ways to best deal with it. Instead of giving up, become an inspiration to others around you.
Negligent drivers can change your life forever. The good news is that you can adapt. Making changes to your home and your vehicle, and positive thinking will all promote a better quality of life.
One minute, you’re on the road going about your day. BAM! The next thing you know you’re in an accident. Whether the collision was minor or major, it can have a negative impact on you emotionally. From the fear and anxiety experienced during impact to the confusion and chaos that follows (police, ambulances, insurance claims, recovery, etc.), these overwhelming emotions can stick with you for years to come.
Your car gets repaired or replaced, your physical wounds are treated and begin to heal, but the psychological trauma many encounter after a car accident can take a while to dissipate. Fortunately, there are service providers like doctors, medical experts, and attorneys to help you get through some of the physical, financial, and legal obstacles that arise after a car crash. This not only helps to ease your stress and anxiety but allows you to focus your attention on improving your mental wellbeing.
What Might You Experience?
What are some emotional effects you experience from a car accident? While everyone is different, you might expect to feel the following:
- Denial or Shocked – After an accident your mind and body could go into shock. You might feel numb, unable to react emotionally, or even in denial that the event took place.
- Anger or Frustration – Anger and frustration can quickly come about in an accident. You’re upset with the other driver for their actions and the mess it caused.
- Guilt – On the other end of the spectrum, you might find yourself feeling guilty if you believe you were in the wrong. This is especially true if someone got seriously hurt or died.
- Anxiety and Fear – Immediately following an accident the events can trigger fear and anxiety. The loud noise and bright lights from emergency vehicles, the sight of the accident, and wondering what happens next can tie your mind up in knots.
What Should You Do?
If you experience emotional overwhelm after an accident, find comfort in knowing it’s normal. The key to preventing long-term emotional effects after a car accident is to identify your emotions and find healthy ways to soothe them. Some solutions might include:
- Take Deep Breaths – When you feel yourself becoming overwhelmed with rage, anger, anxiety, or fear, pause right where you are, close your eyes, and take deep breaths in and out.
- Tackle One Thing at a Time – Trying to resolve all your issues after an accident at once will only cause emotional overload. To keep some mental balance, it is recommended that you tackle one thing at a time. Contact the police, take photos of the scene, collect information from the driver, get medical attention, file a claim, talk to a car accident lawyer, and then dedicate time to healing. Pusch & Nguyen has been my choice for a long time!
- Find Healthy Outlets – After a traumatic experience, it can take some time to get over. When you find yourself getting overwhelmed or going back to that dark space, it is important to have healthy outlets. This might be talking with a friend or relative, taking a walk outside, reading a good book, getting a massage, or spending time with your children.
- Know When to Get Help – Sometimes your emotions are too much for you to control on your own. If you start experiencing prolonged periods of sadness, anger, or anxiety, it is highly recommended that you seek help from a mental health professional, mentor, or spiritual advisor. Sometimes, talking to a third party can help you feel better while also giving you the tools you need to overcome your emotions.
Though accidents happen all the time, it’s not something a person grows accustomed to. When you’re involved in an accident, a plethora of emotions from happy to sad can overcome you at once. While time may heal some wounds, others take longer to recover from. Start by knowing what’s going on emotionally, then take healthy steps towards releasing those emotions, if that isn’t effective, seek help from a mental health expert.
Being involved in a car accident causes a lot of physical and emotional trauma to the victims. The possibility of losing income doesn’t make it any easier. Did you know that as a vehicle accident victim, you have the right to be compensated? You may also be able to claim several types of damages in a lawsuit. This article talks about the types of accidents and compensation you may get after an auto accident. Let’s take a look.
Common Types Of Auto Accidents
There are many different types of accidents that can occur when driving. As you can see from this image these are the most common ones.
When an accident occurs, it’s time to look into what types of compensation you may need to consider. Let’s look into this further.
Types Of Auto Accident Compensation
1. Medical Expenses
Anyone who goes through a car accident is likely to accumulate hospital bills depending on the injury. Injuries could range from minor cuts and bruises, to paralysis and even a permanent disability.
However, some injuries may not cause physical symptoms initially, or may not require hospital visits down the road. That’s why any accident survivor must go through a medical examination to determine if injury has occurred.
Medical expenses that arise from car accidents include:
- Physical or cognitive therapy (if brain injury is evident).
- Ambulance fees.
- Healthcare consultation fees.
- Medical aids such as crutches and heat pads.
- Permanent disability.
- In-home services (even if not medical).
If your doctor advises that you require additional medical treatment or therapy when your claim is settled, your attorney may calculate the possible costs. Doctors and health care providers can help with these estimates. If a motorist is responsible for the death of another motorist, the bereaved family can file a claim for wrongful death. They can also claim other medical costs incurred between the time of the accident and death.
2. Loss of Income
This type of claim includes payment for the time you were unable to work while recuperating due to the accident. A full-body recovery requires rest so the body can completely heal. Brain injuries also require a mental rest.
Accident victims might be unable to return to work for weeks and even months, depending on the type of injury. Those whose jobs require a lot of physical activity may still be restricted when they return to work and may not be able to earn as they did before.
You may also gain compensation for any future loss of wages as well. It becomes devastating for family members and other dependents when an accident victim can’t return to work in the future. For example, if a surgeon is involved in an accident that causes nerve damage in his hands, he’s likely not going to be able to continue his job. He can sue for the loss of his future income.
If the victim is below working-age, they could sue for compensation because permanent disability will restrict them from getting any meaningful employment as adults.
3. Property Damages
All cars are designed to offer the first line of protection to the occupants in case of an accident. Automobiles are strategically designed to endure the force of impact. However, in some extreme cases, the car is severely damaged and written off after an accident.
In most cases, the car has to be repaired. The value of the vehicle also decreases after an accident. To recover fair damages to your car or any other property, you need to take steps to protect your claim’s value. It’d be best if you documented the scene of the accident, including vehicle and personal property damage. Take photos if possible.
Also, keep all receipts related to the accident, including:
- Towing costs, interior, and body repairs.
- Rental car expenses.
- Parking fees and expenses.
- Mileage reimbursement for travel to and from medical appointments.
- Transportation costs to and from medical appointments for those who can’t drive.
You can claim property loss claims separately from the bodily injury claims so that you can purchase a new vehicle or replace personal property.
4. Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering are defined by law as mental or physical distress that may cause one to seek damages in a lawsuit. The type of injury determines these types of injuries, the seriousness of the pain caused, and the prognosis of future pain resulting from the injury.
Pain and suffering may also be mental or emotional damages emanating from the accident, like stress or anxiety. Some states allow one to include pain and suffering damages for a general loss of enjoyment of life.
Not all states award pain and suffering damages in the same way. Some allow a jury to deduce that there must be some pain and suffering associated with bodily injury. In contrast, others require a certain period of consciousness during the damage to file the claim.
However, note that if the injury and pain are as a result of medical malpractice, there’ll be a cap on how much compensation you can receive.
An accident victim may recover a few types of damages after a car accident impacts his/her life and those around them. You can file claims for medical expenses, loss of income, property damages, and pain and suffering. Don’t delay seeking legal counsel.
Summer is almost here, which means it’s time for you, your family and friends to plan your next summer road trips. While you may have already worked out every detail of your interstate trip, let’s admit that things may not always go as planned. One of those things you least expect but could happen is a car accident.
Driving on unfamiliar roads in strange cities could put you in such an unexpected car mishap. As they say, even the safest and most experienced driver runs the risk of being involved in car accidents, especially when traveling to new places.
Hence, if you travel by car across the country, consider preparing yourself for such an event. It will be a good idea to know in advance what to do when caught in an out-of-state car accident.
What is an out-of-state car accident?
As the name suggests, out-of-state car accidents are car mishaps that occur in a state outside your living vicinity.
To illustrate, say, you are a resident of Las Vegas (Nevada), and you embark on a road trip to San Diego (California). Somehow, you got into a car accident in San Diego with another car whose driver is a resident of Salt Lake City (Utah). Such a situation is what we call an out-of-state car accident.
The thing with out-of-state car accidents is that there are disparities in the applicable laws governing these two different states. Every State in the US has different laws that govern injury claims. Corollary to it, in enforcing your rights and claiming recovery for a car accident, the accident’s location has a huge impact on the case.
What should I immediately do in case of an out-of-state car accident?
Like any car accident, the first thing you should do is to call emergency services. Call 911 immediately.
When able, take photographs of the damages to both vehicles and report it to the authorities. Note that in making a report, you must not admit to anything, even if you think you may have significantly contributed to the accident.
On a later note, consider getting a thorough check-up from a physician for injuries or pains you may subsequently suffer because of the accident. However, if the accident occurred in a graver state, seek emergency services immediately, and have yourself checked and confined to the nearest hospital.
Briefly, the procedures mentioned above are the general, immediate, and less complicated responses to car accidents. However, the case is different when it comes to handling the technical and legal procedures of out-of-state car accidents. These more complicated parts often refer to the filing of personal injury claims, and sometimes, to the filing of insurance claims.
Where to file a personal injury suit after an out-of-state car accident?
As a general rule, if you are injured in a car accident, you may file a suit for compensation in the State where the defendant resides, or in the State where the accident occurred.
Given the earlier scenario, you can, therefore, sue the defendant driver in Utah (his State of residence) or California (the place of the accident). The law does not allow you to file a lawsuit against the defendant in your home state unless the defendant consents to it. Consequently, you are only limited to filing a personal injury suit in Utah or California.
It is worthy to note that the place where you sue a defendant determines which State’s laws apply to the case. If you decide to sue the defendant in California (the site of the accident), which is a tort state, Californian laws shall apply to the cases. The law of the place where the accident occurred shall, thus, govern.
All these may be too technical for an ordinary person. However, with the aid of car accident lawyers in the San Diego area, you will be able to claim reparation from the defendant applying San Diego’s comparative fault state laws with more convenience. You only have to look for the experienced lawyers in the area to handle your case. These attorneys will ably represent you before an arbitrator or a jury to be able to recover compensation on your behalf.
Not only that, but these lawyers will also be able to guide you through strict technical rules you might not know of. For instance, each State has different statutes of limitations for filing personal injury claims. You could lose your claim based on a technicality for failure to observe the statute of limitations. Thankfully, your lawyer can guide you through this.
Applying this to the above example, California has a two-year period within which you file a personal injury suit. Utah, on the other hand, has four years for filing a lawsuit. These are essential periods for filing that you must carefully observe. Since California laws were applied to the example, the personal injury suit must be filed within two years from the date of the accident. Otherwise, your claim will forever be barred.
Where to file an auto insurance claim?
Most often than not, car insurance providers will likely cover you regardless of where you are in the United States for as long as you qualify for recovery. Hence, if you get into an accident in any state outside your home state, you need not worry as much since your car insurance policy will cover you nonetheless.
Fortunately, car insurance policies extend coverage beyond state lines. Consequently, when you file a claim for an out-of-state car accident, such a claim goes through the same process as filing for an in-state car accident.
Nevertheless, no matter how simple this procedure may be, we still deem it wise to consult an attorney first to guide you through the process and better explain the legal repercussions of your options and decisions.
Car accidents, by itself, are complicated occurrences. Out-of-state car accidents are all the more difficult since there are many factors we need to consider in such an event. State laws are not uniform. As such, they vary in application. Fortunately, we have learned a few basics of what to do when caught in an out-of-state car accident. Remember, however, that if things are a bit too much to handle, you can always entrust technical procedures to reliable car accident attorneys in the area.
Kevin Moore is a Law student and contributing writer for various magazines, sites, and law publications. When he’s off duty from school and work duties, Kevin loves to hop from one historical museum to another to get his cultural fix.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 36,560 Americans were killed in automobile accidents in 2019. Although car accident fatalities have been trending down in recent years, accidents are still an all too common part of American life.
Here, we’ll list the five most common types of car accidents and how severe they are
1. Rear-End Collisions
Rear-end collisions, also known as fender benders, occur when one car crashes into the back of a vehicle in front of it. Often, these collisions are very minor, with both cars moving at a low speed when the collision occurs. In other instances, they can be severe, like when a vehicle stops suddenly while traveling at high speed.
If damage to the vehicles is minor and superficial, you may be able to handle the situation amicably without going to court. However, if damage to either vehicle is severe or if anyone has been injured (whiplash is a common injury with fender benders), you may want to hire a car accident lawyer.
2. Side Impact Collisions
Also called T-bones, side-impact collisions are just what they sound like. They occur when a vehicle crashes into the side of another vehicle. They’re common at intersections or in parking lots.
As with rear-end collisions, this type of car accident can range from fairly minor to severe. In parking lot collisions, both vehicles are usually traveling slowly and can quickly brake upon impact. In other cases, severe injuries can occur.
If you have been in a car accident with severe injuries, it’s best to consult a legal professional. You’ll want to focus on your recovery while having peace of mind that your case is in good hands.
3. Single Car Accidents
As the name suggests, these accidents involve only one vehicle. One of the most common reasons for single car accidents is bad weather, such as a car slipping on ice and going off the road. Other reasons include collisions with debris that have fallen onto the road and collisions with deer animals.
Single car accidents vary from minor to severe. If the only affects you and your vehicle, you will be able to handle the situation with your insurance company alone. However, if pedestrian injuries or property damage occurs, you should hire a lawyer.
4. Vehicle Rollovers
Unsurprisingly, vehicle rollovers are one of the most fatal types of car accidents. They occur when a vehicle flips over, landing on its roof or side. They typically involve only one vehicle. One common cause is taking sharp turns at high speed.
Some vehicles are more prone to rollovers than others, such as SUVs, which have a high center of gravity. Vehicle rollovers often lead to severe or fatal injuries, including brain damage and spinal cord injuries.
5. Hit and Run Accidents
Unfortunately, hit and run incidents are fairly common. These occur when a driver flees the scene of the crash before the other driver can speak to them and exchange contact and insurance information.
It can be very hard to find an individual who has fled the scene of a crash. It’s a good idea to hire a lawyer to assist with collecting evidence, such as statements from eyewitnesses or surveillance footage. Depending on the severity of the crash, you may be entitled to compensation if you are the victim of a hit and run.
Many Americans will be involved in an automobile accident at a point in their lives. Most will be fortunate enough that it will be minor. Knowing the types of accidents and why they occur will help you guard yourself against them.
If the accident involves severe damages or injuries, hire a car accident lawyer to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.