Motor Vehicle Accidents
- Photographs of the scene – the resting position of vehicles after the crash, skid marks, debris, witnesses, parties to the crash, and weather depicted in photographs can yield plenty of information which your motor vehicle accident attorney may use to prove or disprove conflicting versions of how an accident happened.
- 911 recordings can provide information and are always available only for a limited time.
- Video recordings, as cameras may have recorded the crash and the video may only be available for a short time. A crash could have been recorded by cameras at an intersection, certain highway locations, and nearby surveillance video.
- Air bag modules, like the “black box” of an airplane, are computers that record and store crash data such as pre-crash vehicle speed, engine speed, throttle position, impact speed, and seatbelt use. This information can be used by an accident reconstruction expert to determine which driver was at fault in a crash. In the event that the car was a total loss, your motor vehicle accident attorney can make sure this information is obtained prior to its destruction.
- Witnesses should be interviewed as soon as possible, for two reasons – memories of events may fade over time, and witnesses could become more difficult to contact due to changing a residence, job, phone number, etc.
- Insurance information for all possible applicable coverage must be promptly investigated as medical bills quickly pile up and could end up in collections if not properly addressed.
As motor vehicle accident attorneys we handle cases involving all types of injuries from automobile accidents – some of the most common injuries are as follows:
- neck, back and spinal cord injuries
- radiculopathy (neurological)
- head injuries
- traumatic brain injuries
- fractures (broken or shattered bones)
- facial injuries
- shoulder, ankle knee, hip, hand and wrist injuries (orthopedic)
- disfigurement and scarring
- catastrophic injuries
- wrongful death
Evidence of Injuries
Evidence of injuries or “damages” must be obtained in order for your motor vehicle accident attorney to prove that compensation should be awarded. The following are some examples of evidence of damages in a car accident case:
- hospital charts
- medical records from treating doctors
- itemized billing statements
- diagnostic imaging such as x-rays, CT and MRI scans
- testimony of treating doctors
- photographs taken during surgical procedures
- photographs of scarring
- testimony of friends, family members or co-workers familiar with your condition both before and after a crash
- photographs of vehicles showing severity of impact
- employment records showing absence from work due to injuries
- social security disability records
Types of Motor Vehicle Accidents
Certain kinds of accidents necessarily require specialized knowledge in the area of personal injury law, such as that of a motor vehicle accident attorney. Some examples are:
- Hit-and-Run: If another car causes an accident and flees the scene, you aren’t necessarily left with no recourse. Depending upon your own automobile insurance coverage, you may be able to receive compensation for your damages through Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist’s coverage. A competent motor vehicle accident attorney will be able to review your policy and advise you as to your options.
- Pedestrians: If you are hit by a car while walking on a sidewalk or in a crosswalk, you do not have the same protection as you do when you are seated inside a car. As a result, injuries to pedestrians are often more severe. Your own car insurance may offer additional coverage to you for your damages, even if you are a pedestrian. This coverage covers not only you, but also your family members who reside with you if they are injured as a result of an automobile or pedestrian accident. Your motor vehicle accident attorney will know how to obtain that additional coverage.
- Trucking Accidents: A crash with a truck, tractor-trailer or “big rig” is often more catastrophic due to the difference in size and weight between trucks and automobiles. Accidents with trucks often occur due to obstructed vision of the driver, driver fatigue, excess cargo, failure to adequately secure cargo, poorly maintained vehicle, driver inattention, and improper training. Many commercial truck operators must have a special license called a Commercial Driver’s License, which requires medical and drug screening. Truck drivers are usually required to keep time logs and undergo drug testing. It is important to obtain these records from the truck driver’s employer, including the hiring records, background checks and the driver’s history as these may be factors that your motor vehicle accident attorney can use to prove that the employer was negligent in hiring an unqualified driver that can cause a motor vehicle accident.
- Motorcycle accidents: A driver or passenger on a motorcycle often suffers more severe injuries due the simple fact that they do not have the protection of a vehicle around them. There are often very careful motorcycle drivers who are injured because of aggressive or careless driving on the part of others. Not wearing a helmet can result in severe head injuries, although many head injuries are often sustained by motorcycle drivers and passengers even with a helmet on. If you were not wearing a helmet and were involved in an accident that does not necessarily mean that a negligent driver is not responsible for your damages. Your motor vehicle accident attorney knows how to handle your case properly.
- Drunk or Impaired Drivers: If you are hit by a drunk or impaired driver, you may be entitled to punitive damages in addition to compensatory damages. Compensatory damages are designed to make someone “whole” again after being injured, but unlike compensatory damages punitive damages are designed to punish and deter reckless conduct like driving while drunk. In some cases, a person or business which served the impaired driver may be liable as well.
Call and schedule your free consultation with a motor vehicle accident attorney. Get your questions answered, and let us see if we can help you. There is absolutely no fee unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you.
Uninsured Motorist Claims
Many people incorrectly believe that their automobile insurance policy provides “full coverage” when in fact they have only the bare minimum coverage required by law.
Sometimes people carry no coverage at all for bodily injury. Quite often insurance premiums are overlooked and the policy lapses, leaving an accident victim without any recourse if they have been injured in a crash. In some instances, a driver may carry bodily injury insurance but is underinsured – meaning they have bodily injury liability insurance but in an amount that will not adequately compensate you.
Uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) motorist claims may also be made in a hit-and-run situation where a driver flees the scene of the crash. As motor vehicle accident attorneys, we always recommend that you make sure to have uninsured/underinsured coverage to protect yourself and your family. Not only can it protect you if you are involved in an automobile accident while you are in your car, but it may also provide coverage if you are a pedestrian.
We have over thirty years of experience as motor vehicle accident attorneys and have helped hundreds of accident victims obtain compensation for their injuries when a driver who caused a crash was either uninsured or underinsured. There are very specific procedures which must be followed when pursuing a claim for uninsured/underinsured motorist benefits. Failure to do so can result in the claim being denied, which could leave you with unpaid medical bills, out-of-pocket expenses, lost wages and little to no compensation for the pain and suffering resulting from your injuries.
Let a motor vehicle accident attorney battle the insurance companies for you and obtain the maximum amount of compensation.