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In 2019, an estimated 2.74 million people were injured in car accidents, leaving victims with significant medical expenses, car repairs, and questions about how to seek the compensation they may deserve. This article is intended to answer some of the common questions about car accidents that victims frequently ask.
The car accident attorneys at Zinda Law Group have experience representing victims and getting the compensation they deserve. Call us today at (800) 863-5312 for a free attorney consultation with a car accident lawyer.
Do I Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident?
It depends on the severity of the accident and if any party sustained injuries. If no one was injured, you may be able to settle the insurance claim without an attorney. However, if you were injured in a car accident, you have the right to recover expenses from medical bills, car repairs, pain and suffering, and time taken off from work due to the injuries you sustained in the accident. A car accident attorney may help you seek compensation from insurance companies who operate to pay you as little as possible.
What Should I Do After a Car Accident?
After a car accident, you may still feel shaken and overwhelmed about what to do next. The below steps outline what you should in the days and weeks following your accident.
Monitor Your Health
If you do not receive medical treatment at the scene of the accident, visit your doctor as soon as possible to determine if you need medical treatment. After you leave the hospital or doctor’s office, be sure to watch for any additional signs or symptoms that occur in the days following the accident. Don’t ignore any signs or symptoms because you can experience the effects of a car accident several days after it happens.
Document Your Damage
As soon as possible, be sure to take photos of the damage to your car and any injuries you sustained in the accident. If any witnesses watched the accident occur, take down their contact information, as their perspective may be able to strengthen your case.
Keep Track of Your Expenses
To help you seek compensation after a car accident, you will need to keep track of your expenses. This could include hospital bills, car repairs, rental cars, or documented time taken off from work due to your injuries.
Obtain the Police Report
If a police officer responded to your accident, he or she will have filled out an accident report. If you were not given a copy at the scene of the accident, call the police department to ask for a copy of the accident report or how to access this report once it becomes available.
Notify Your Insurance Company
After you’ve been in a car accident, your insurance company needs to be notified. In minor cases without any injuries, you can call your insurance company and notify them yourself. However, if any party is injured, it is best to call an experienced car accident lawyer first for a few reasons.
1. You may not be prepared
After a car accident, you may still be upset, confused, and traumatized. When an insurance agent speaks with you, they may ask to record the call, hoping to find evidence that an accident was your fault. These recordings can be used in court to hurt your chances of recovering money from the other party. It is always best to have an attorney speak on your behalf when dealing with insurance companies.
2. You may not know the extent of your injuries
The effects of a car accident can be long-lasting and may not appear right away. The ongoing medical treatment for injuries can be unpredictable and expensive. You won’t know what the future holds immediately after your accident.
3. You may be pressured to settle
Insurance companies want to pay you as little as possible. They may offer you a settlement, or an amount of money that they’ve evaluated the damage to be. However, this may not be the actual value of your case and may be insufficient to cover your expenses, especially with serious and ongoing injuries. A car accident attorney may be able to help ensure you receive a fair car accident settlement.
Do I Need to See a Doctor Even if I Don’t Think I Was Injured?
It is always a good idea to be checked by a medical professional after an accident, even if you don’t believe you were injured. While you may be able to tell if you suffered from an external injury, medical professionals will be able to check for internal injuries such as concussions or other injuries. In some cases, the symptoms of an accident will not appear right away and you may feel fine after an accident but later require medical treatment. Any injuries that a doctor documents will be valuable to prove the extent of your injuries later on.
Read More: Most Common Injuries After a Car Accident
Can I Continue to Drive My Car After an Accident?
It will likely depend on how damaged your car is after an accident and state laws on whether you can drive the car after an accident. If your car is seriously damaged or totaled, you will likely be unable to drive it away from the scene of an accident and need to have the vehicle towed.
In cases with more minor damage, you should check to see if fluids are leaking out of the bottom, if your brake lights and turn signals work, and if the vehicle steering is functioning correctly. If these all appear to be working, then you may be able to drive away from the accident. However, it may still be a good idea to have a mechanic check to see if there is structural or internal damage to the car that you may not otherwise notice.
What if I am Partially Responsible for Causing the Accident?
Even if you believe you may be partially at fault for causing the accident, you may still be entitled to recover money. Each state sets its own rules for determining how to divide and assign fault in an accident. For example, in states that follow a comparative fault law, the fault can be shared between the parties and you may still be able to recover money even if you are found to be partially responsible for causing the accident. Determining fault and recovery can be complicated, but an experienced car accident attorney may help navigate the process for you.
What Compensation MAY I Seek After a Car Accident?
After a car accident, you may be able to seek compensation for medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and pain and suffering. You may also be able to recover the costs for car repairs and rental car expenses while your car is being repaired. If you had to take time off from work due to your injuries, then you may be able to recover the wages you would have earned during that time. It is important that you save receipts and bills related to your car accident to help you seek the compensation you may be entitled to.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire an Attorney?
At Zinda Law Group, we believe that the last thing you should have to worry about after a car accident is paying for an attorney. That’s why we offer 100% free consultations and only get paid if we win your case. Our fee is a percentage of the amount of money that we recover for you.
Read More: Contingency Fees
How Much Time Do I Have to File a Lawsuit?
If you were injured in a car accident and want to file a car accident lawsuit against the other party, you need to be aware of the time limits, or statutes of limitations, that are in place. Each state sets its own time limits, on how much time you have from the date of your accident to file a claim for your injuries. However, it is best to contact a car accident lawyer as soon as possible to help you seek the money you deserve.
What may a Car Accident Lawyer Do for Me?
A car accident lawyer may help ensure you receive proper medical treatment, investigate the accident, interview witnesses, collect crash reports, negotiate with the insurance company, file a lawsuit, and go to trial if necessary. An attorney may also help you determine the damages you are entitled to, which will depend on factors such as the extent of your injuries, the amount of your medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and damage to your vehicle, among other things.
Read More: Why Hiring an Attorney May Help Your Case
Contact a Lawyer Who Handles Car Accident Cases
At Zinda Law Group, our car accident attorneys have helped many crash victims get the compensation they deserved after suffering an injury. We are here to answer any questions you have about your car accident case and want to help our clients seek the compensation they may deserve.
We believe an accident victim should never have to worry about being able to afford excellent legal representation. That is why we offer 100% free consultations, and why you pay nothing unless we win your case. That’s our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.
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