Car accidents happen often in New Mexico and can be incredibly stressful. Not only can a collision leave you with physical injuries, but it can also subject you to difficult conversations with insurance companies. Still, if the negligent actions of another driver caused your accident, you have the right to seek financial compensation.
The good news is that you don’t have to fight this battle alone. Zinda Law Group’s New Mexico car accident lawyers stand ready to help you through these challenging times.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, contact us for a free consultation regarding your personal injury claim.
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Common Causes of Car Accidents in New Mexico
One recent study found that more than 46,000 traffic accidents were reported on public roadways in New Mexico. These crashes injured close to 20,000 people and killed almost 400, according to New Mexico crash report data.
While many factors can contribute to a collision, some of the most common causes of car accidents in New Mexico include the following:
- Speeding: Driving at excessive speeds is often a contributing factor in car crashes. When motorists speed, they have less time to react, increasing the risk of a collision. In addition, a speeding vehicle will hit another car or truck with more force, often causing severe injuries.
- Impaired driving: Drunk driving may result in weaving in and out of lanes, quickly speeding up or slowing down, swerving, following too closely, or driving without headlamps at night.
- Distracted driving: It may only take seconds for a driver to reply to a text, but those few seconds are enough to cause a fatal crash. If a driver is looking at their phone, they are not focused on the road or other vehicles. Distracted driving is a leading cause of car crashes in New Mexico and nationwide.
- Failing to yield: Many of these accidents happen because a negligent driver fails to yield. When drivers fail to look both ways, slow down, or respect the right-of-way, intersection collisions can seriously injure all involved.
Common Auto Accident Injuries
Car accidents can range from minor fender-benders to high-speed collisions. As a result, a range of injuries can occur.
Some of the most common types of injuries from car accidents include:
- Head and neck injuries: Injuries to the head and neck can range in severity from soft tissue damage, like whiplash, to skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries. It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible if you have a head or neck injury, as untreated injuries can lead to serious long-term problems.
- Scrapes, cuts, and bruises: The second your car hits another object, the items inside your car can go flying and become projectiles that injure you and your passengers. If a windshield breaks, the glass from the windows can cause deep cuts and lacerations that require stitches or more extensive medical treatment. Seatbelts can also cause severe bruising.
- Breaks and fractures: The force generated by car collisions is enough to cause serious broken bones. Drivers are especially susceptible to broken ribs from the impact of the steering wheel. Broken arms and legs are also common in serious car accidents.
- Internal injuries: Common internal injuries include bleeding and organ damage, both of which can be fatal if treatment is delayed.
- Spinal cord injuries: Damage to the spinal cord can result in permanent disability or death, and survivors often require ongoing medical care and treatment.
After being injured in a crash, it’s important to get treatment immediately, follow your doctor’s instructions, and attend all follow-up appointments. Doing so is important for your health and your personal injury case.
Burns, torn meniscus, PTSD, anxiety, scarring, and possible nerve damage
Back and Leg Injuries
Motor Vehicle Collision
Motor Vehicle Collision
What Should I Do After a Car Accident?
After leaving the accident scene, you may feel shaken and overwhelmed as you contemplate your next steps. The below sections outline what you should do in the days and weeks following your accident:
Seek Medical Attention
If you do not receive emergency medical care at the accident scene, see a doctor as soon as possible to determine whether you need treatment. After you leave the doctor’s office or hospital, watch for any additional symptoms that may occur in the days following the crash.
Please don’t ignore any new pain, as you can experience the effects of a car accident several days later. Many injuries can worsen over time if you delay treatment.
Document the Damage From the Accident
Right after an accident, it is easy to feel overwhelmed. You may have been too injured or overwhelmed to take photos at the crash scene.
You should still take photos of the damage to your car and the injuries you suffered in the accident as soon as you can.
Obtain the Police Report
If a law enforcement officer responded to your accident, they would have completed an official report. If you were not given a copy at the accident scene, call the police or sheriff’s department to ask for a copy of the report or how to access it once it is available.
Notify Your Own Insurance Company
After you’ve been in a car accident, your insurance company must be notified, and we can do this for you if you call us immediately. That said, in minor cases where no one is hurt, you can call your insurance company and notify them yourself.
However, if anyone is hurt, it is best to call a car accident lawyer in New Mexico first.
Keep Track of Your Expenses
A car accident can be costly. Hospital bills, lost income from missed work, and automobile repair bills can add up quickly. But you shouldn’t have to pay for any of this if the accident was someone else’s fault.
Save all receipts and paperwork related to your accident. If you are hospitalized and unable to gather the necessary documentation, our team can try to obtain copies while you focus on recovering from your injuries.
You May Be Entitled to Financial Compensation
If you were involved in a car accident caused by another driver, you may be entitled to compensation from the other party’s insurance company. For example, if you were sitting at a red light and were rear-ended, the other driver may be at fault. Of course, the compensation you can recover depends on two main factors: the severity of your injuries and the level of fault of each involved party.
If you only suffered minor injuries that did not require hospitalization, the compensation you seek may be less than if you suffered severe injuries. Please keep in mind that New Mexico is a pure comparative negligence state.
This means that each party may be assigned a percentage of fault, and the compensation you pursue is reduced according to this percentage. So, for example, if an accident is determined to be 10% your fault, then the maximum compensation you can seek is 90% of your losses.
Economic damages are those expenses with bills attached to them. After a New Mexico car accident, economic losses could include the following:
- Medical bills
- Physical therapy
- Chiropractor bills
- Dental bills
- Documentation regarding missed work due to your injuries
- Receipts for the repairs or replacement of your vehicle
- Rental car receipts
In addition to economic losses like medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage, you may also be eligible for non-economic damages, including the following:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress or mental anguish
- Loss of consortium or companionship
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Wrongful death of a loved one
A court may also award punitive damages if the at-fault driver’s behavior was particularly egregious, such as in a case involving a drunk driver.
Why You Should Call Car Accident Lawyer In New Mexico Immediately
There are several reasons why contacting a qualified personal injury attorney soon after a car accident is in your best interest:
- You may not be ready to give a recorded statement to the insurance company: After a car accident, you may be upset, confused, and traumatized. When an insurance agent speaks with you, they may ask to record your conversation, hoping you will slip up and say something they can use to blame you for the accident. These recordings can be used against you in court and ruin your chances of obtaining compensation from the liable party. When dealing with insurance companies, having an attorney speak on your behalf is always best.
- You may not know the extent of your injuries: The effects of a car accident can be long-lasting and may not appear immediately. What may have seemed like a minor headache can become a chronic condition. The ongoing medical treatment for serious injuries, like brain and spinal cord trauma, can be unpredictable and expensive. You won’t know what the future holds immediately after your accident.
- The insurance adjuster may pressure you to settle: Insurance companies are notorious for trying to minimize payouts. They may offer you a settlement or the amount of money they’ve assessed for the damage. However, this may be insufficient to cover your expenses and pain and suffering, especially with a serious and ongoing injury. Allow one of our experienced car accident lawyers to fight for you and help you seek a fair settlement.
Common Car Accident Types that We Handle
Our experienced car accident lawyers in New Mexico represent victims of all types of car accident cases. Some of the most common causes of car accidents we see include the following:
- Rear-end collisions
- Single car accidents
- Rollover accidents
- Side-impact collisions
- Head-on collisions
- Sideswipe accidents
- Distracted driving accidents
- Uninsured motorist accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Truck accidents
- Amazon delivery truck accidents
- Door dash accidents
- New Mexico Department of Transportation accidents
- North Central RTD Accidents
- Fatal Car Accidents
Allow One of Our New Mexico Lawyers to Handle Your Car Accident Claim
After an accident, you may wonder how to go about seeking compensation for your injuries. If someone else caused your accident, you can seek compensation through an insurance claim or a civil lawsuit.
Whatever your potential path to compensation looks like, it should begin with speaking to an attorney. An experienced New Mexico auto accident attorney can advise you on the value of your case and craft an effective strategy for pursuing fair compensation.
Once you have chosen an attorney to work with, they can begin researching and investigating your case’s particular facts. This will include things like analyzing any photo or video evidence that might be available, obtaining police reports, and speaking with any witnesses who were present at the scene.
The vast majority of claims will settle long before they make it to the courtroom, which is why this step is extremely important. At this stage, your attorney will frame your claim in the best light possible, minimizing any potential weak points while emphasizing the stronger aspects of your case.
Why Choose Our Law Firm?
Our New Mexico car accident lawyers have helped numerous clients obtain the compensation they deserve. This experience will enable them to help you seek maximum compensation for your injuries.
Here are a few more things that set us apart from other firms:
- Large firm resources: With offices across the Southwest, our personal injury attorneys have access to vast resources that help them obtain maximum compensation for clients. This includes access to accident reconstruction experts, who may be able to help create compelling visuals that demonstrate that the other party in your accident was the at-fault party.
- Small firm attention: Our car accident lawyers are careful not to take on too many cases, so each client receives the attention they deserve. While having access to the resources of a national firm, your New Mexico attorney will also have the localized expertise to create a compelling case.
- Experience with auto insurance companies: With most car accidents, insurance companies will be involved. Insurance companies want to pay out as little as possible, which can often come at the expense of compensation you may deserve. Having an experienced lawyer with you may prevent being taken advantage of by these insurance companies.
Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury Claim After a New Mexico Accident
In cases of vehicle accidents, New Mexicans have a limited amount of time to file a personal injury claim with the court system. Barring unique circumstances, you have a three-year window after the accident date, per New Mexico Statutes.
While three years is a long time, insurance companies expect you to report an accident right away, and time is of the essence for many other reasons.
The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can start gathering and preserving key evidence in your case, and the sooner you can recover compensation. Our experienced New Mexico attorneys encourage anyone hurt in an accident to contact us as soon as possible.
When we accept your case, we will get to work immediately to ensure that all necessary paperwork is filed. We will thoroughly investigate your accident and leave no stone unturned when pursuing compensation for your injuries.
Get Help from Our New Mexico Car Accident Lawyers
The New Mexico car accident attorneys at Zinda Law Group are ready to assist you. Our team will do everything in our power to make the process easy while fighting for maximum compensation in your case.
We believe that accident victims shouldn’t have to worry about the cost of legal representation, which is why we use a no-win no-fee policy; you don’t pay us anything if we don’t win your case.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, call or fill out the online contact form for a free case evaluation with a personal injury lawyer.