Have You Been in a Car Crash? Why You Should Hire a Car Accident Lawyer Each year in the US, over 37,000 people die in road crashes. An additional 2.35 million people are injured or disabled from car accidents. If you have been in a serious car crash, it is important to hire a car accident lawyer. Car accident lawyers can help you recover losses from your accident, as well as help you tackle the hassles that often come with lengthy insurance claims. Making the decision to hire a car accident lawyer can be the difference between justly resolving your case, or losing money to cover damages.
The Benefits of Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer
The fact is car accidents happen every day. Many minor accidents, such as fender benders, are easily resolved without seeking legal guidance. If your accident involves fatalities, serious physical injuries, and significant damage to your vehicle it will benefit you to hire an experienced car accident lawyer for your legal representation. Your lawyer can help you get compensation to cover your losses from damage to your vehicle, medical expenses, and having to take time off from work.
Best Time to Call a Car Accident Lawyer
Generally, it is best to contact a car accident lawyer soon, within a week or two, after the accident occurs. This can save you a lot of money and help you get on track paying for medical expenses and covering lost wages from taking time off. The deadline for filing personal injury claims varies, but acting fast will get you back on the path to recovering from your accident. It is also important to call a car accident lawyer before you make any settlements with the insurance company.
Key Qualities to Look for in a Car Accident Lawyer
Many car accident lawyers cover a range of issues including personal injury, wrongful death, and property damage. When searching for a lawyer look at their experience level with your type of case, location, and their fee structure. You will want to find a lawyer that has extensive knowledge of transportation laws, and knows how to deal with both insurance and health care companies. A great car accident lawyer will be able to effectively settle your case, and come with good references and a solid track record of success.
Prepare for the First Meeting with Your Car Accident Lawyer
Before you hire a car accident lawyer to represent you, you will want to have an initial meeting to discuss your claim and hear how the lawyer plans on going about winning your case. When you meet with a lawyer for the first time it is important to bring documentation relevant to your claim. These documents include:
- Your insurance policy
- Evidence of premium payments
- Information exchanged at the scene of the accident
- Police report from the scene
- Tickets related to the accident
- Photographs of vehicle damage
- Statements from witnesses
- Medical/Psychological records
There also several questions to ask the car accident lawyer before you decide to hire them. Some of the best questions to ask are:
- What experience do you have with this type of injury?
- How much of my accident case will you personally handle?
- How do you structure your fees?
- Do you have a “no-win, no-pay” policy?
- What are the out-of-pocket expenses I need to pay?
- What is the typical settlement rate for cases like mine?
- What percentage of your firm covers car accidents?
After a serious car accident, your life changes dramatically. Don’t fight this battle alone, consider hiring a car accident lawyer to help you win your case and get the compensation you deserve. We will ensure that you get time to recover without worrying about paying medical expenses. Contact us today for a free consultation.
There were more than 116 thousand vehicle accidents in state during 2015, and unfortunately, this number has steadily increased from one year to the next. A big portion of these accidents happened in the major Phoenix area. This is not to say that drivers in Arizona are unsafe; the most cautious drivers can still be involved in an accident caused by someone else’s distracted driving. For example, cell phone use, texting, alcohol and use of mobile apps while driving contribute to many serious and fatal collisions.
Many drivers incorrectly assume that handling a claim following an accident will be easy since they carry insurance. This is not the case; under Arizona law, insurance companies have the right to argue liability. Arizona allows insurance to assign percentage of fault on drivers. From the insurance adjuster perspective, the small manipulation of claims so that small percentages of fault are assigned to victims yields great savings for insurance companies. When this happens, you need an attorney experienced in vehicle accidents to represent you.
When there is a vehicle accident at Arizona, who determines fault? Unfortunately, the answer is not an easy one. Car accident fault in Arizona is typically determined in one of two ways:
The involved parties agree on how the fault should be divided. This is often the case in accidents where fault is obvious such as a rear end accident or one involving running a red light at an intersection, for example.
The accident goes in front of a judge who then determines fault. If this is the case, then it is crucial to hire a skilled accident attorney to evaluate the case, give legal advice, and act as your representation.
An experienced attorney will investigate the details before, during, and after the crash to determine if there is one individual accountable or if there with other contributors. Many factors affect fault determinations. For example, some accidents are the result of poor road visibility, lack of street signs, or poor municipal lighting. These indicate that the city may be at fault. An accident caused by a drunk driver may have been caused by a negligent establishment who over-served and then allowed the patron to drive. Accidents caused by vehicle or equipment malfunctions may implicate the manufacturer.
Generally speaking, vehicle accidents are most often caused by driver error, but Phoenix’s comparative negligence laws make it necessary to investigate multiple people and companies since an injured driver is entitled to compensation from all negligent parties. This statue states that someone who is determined to be at fault can also claim another party as a contributor to the accident.
Damage to your vehicle from the accident is not the only thing to worry about following an accident. Punitive damages are often sought against the negligent party to cover pain and suffering, wage loss, and medical expenses. To do so requires a greater burden of proof. Your attorney will be able to collect evidence in favor of your compensation of punitive damages while also defending you against similar accusations.
The Right Kind of Attorney
If you have been involved in a vehicle accident, it is important to find an attorney who specializes in vehicle accidents. This is especially the case when the accident caused injury or a large amount of damage, or if you have been unfairly assigned fault. Accident laws in Arizona are complex and require a skilled attorney who can draw from previous cases similar to your own.
Contact us to learn more about how we can help you overcome the unique challenges faced by victims of vehicle accidents. During our first consultation, we will discuss the specifics of your case, who should rightfully accept fault, and how to move forward in a way that will provide you with rightful compensation.
Getting into a car accident is something that no one ever expects will happen to them. Besides the risk of injury, and the damage to your car, there is a lot of stress that comes along with the ordeal. However, if you know ahead of time the proper steps that you should take, you can make dealing with a car accident a little simpler. To that end, here is what to do if you are in a car accident.
1. Get To Safety – Getting to a safe location is your first priority after getting into a car accident. Car accidents can occur anywhere, and before you can start moving through the next steps, you want as safe a place as possible before proceeding. Pull over to the side of the road, or place some cones around your car to alert other drivers. Once you are safe, move onto the next steps.
2. Call For Assistance – The next thing you will want to do is call for assistance. This includes calling the police to have them file a report, calling an ambulance if anyone has been injured, calling friends or family if you need their help, or calling for road side assistance if you are no longer able to drive your vehicle. It can take a little while for help to arrive, so the sooner you call, the better off you will be.
3. Swap Information – Once you are in a safe place, and any needed help is on the way, you should now go talk to the other drivers involved. You will want to make sure that everyone is okay and begin swapping contact and insurance information. Be sure to get as much information as possible from the other driver and handle the interaction in a professional manner. Both sides are likely on edge, so try to keep your composure to avoid escalating the situation.
4. Take Pictures – While outside your car, you will also want to take pictures of the accident. Photograph your car, any other cars involved, and the surrounding area. Since most cellphones now have cameras built-in, you can easily snap a few quick pictures on your phone for later use. Another quick tip would be to start taking notes, write them down on a piece of paper or in your phone. If there were any witnesses to the accident take down their name, contact information, and make note of what they witnessed. These notes combined with the pictures can be very helpful in re-creating the story of how the accident started and what damages or injuries were caused. If any complications arise later between you and the other drivers, having the proper pictures of evidence of the car accident will be very valuable.
5. Get Medical Attention – If you suspect you sustained any type of injury as a result of the car accident, are concerned about how you feel, or you simply want to be cautious, you should seek immediate medical attention. Even minor injuries can turn worse if left untreated, and you will want to get an official record of any injuries sustained during the accident. When recognizing even the slightest feeling of potential injuries from the accident you should immediately jump to step number 6. The majority of car accidents become drawn out difficult situations because of injuries and medical attention. If you wait too long to get treated, you may not be able to claim the injuries that were a result of the accident.
6. Call Schenk Podolsky, My Arizona Injury Lawyers – It is highly recommended that anyone involved in an accident speak to an attorney. Mesa attorneys Schenk Podolsky, My Arizona Injury Lawyers, offer free consultations on accidents to help assess the situation. If there were injuries involved – on either side – or if the other driver is not insured, Schenk Podolsky, My Arizona Injury Lawyers can assist in making sure you receive any payments that are due to you, and will handle all of the legal work involved so that you don’t have to worry about it. Oftentimes medical treatment for the injuries can be found with low or no out of pocket costs, ensuring the medical fees are paid by the insurance company through a personal injury claim.
If you can follow these 6 simple steps, you should find that your next car accident goes a little bit more smoothly. Getting into an accident is a stressful experience, but with the proper knowledge ahead of time, you can remove at least some of the stress. While this may not make your experience an enjoyable one, it can at least keep it from becoming worse.