Can You Sue if Someone Hits Your Car?

While nobody expects to be in a motor vehicle accident, these crashes happen every day. And those involved in these accidents often deal with debilitating injuries, excruciating pain, and a slew of medical bills and other expenses that can forever change their lives.

Worse yet, the victims of these crashes may not be able to collect the insurance money they need to help them get the care they require and will have to resort to taking legal action to get the compensation they are entitled to.

However, if you are going through this challenging ordeal, you thankfully do not have to deal with these tragic repercussions on your own. Instead, when you hire an experienced car accident attorney to fight on your behalf; you can focus on what matters most, your healing and recovery, while these lawyers go after the monetary damages you deserve.

Negotiate With the Insurance Company

Before you file a lawsuit for a car crash, you first want to see how much money you can get from the insurance company. However, the insurance company is not there to get you the money you need. They are a business, and like other businesses, they want to make a profit. By offering you less than you need or denying your claim altogether, they will make more money.

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That is why insurance companies and their adjusters are ready to do everything to get you to say something that can hurt your case or use your vulnerability after the accident to get you to accept a settlement that barely covers any of your current expenses, let alone your future needs.

It is in your best interest to leave these negotiations to an experienced car accident lawyer, who can make sure you do not say anything that can impact your claim and pursue the compensation you need. Plus, if the other side is unwilling to settle for a fair amount, these attorneys can take your case to court and fight for maximum damages.

Reasons to Sue Another Motorist

Depending on the circumstances of your accident and what happens with the insurance company, you may decide that you want to pursue a lawsuit against the liable motorist, especially when:

The Expenses You Endured Are Extensive

If the motor vehicle accident resulted in costly car repairs and astronomical medical bills that led to significant financial troubles for you and your family, call a car accident lawyer.

The Insurance Company Won’t Negotiate Fairly

If the insurance company won’t provide you with money to cover all your expenses, then your motor vehicle accident attorney may decide to move away from settlement negotiations and consider a lawsuit. This can also show the other side you are not inclined to accept less than you are entitled to, and you are prepared to fight for all the money you need.

Speak with a knowledgeable car accident attorney as soon as possible after the collision to determine what legal options you have and whether a lawsuit is a good idea. These legal professionals can review your case, determine if you have a viable legal claim, and figure out what legal remedies you have.

The Things You Should Do Before You File a Lawsuit

While the last thing you want to worry about after a car accident is securing evidence and getting people’s contact information, you must understand that the things you do after these crashes can ensure you stay safe and that your legal rights remain protected. That is why following a motor vehicle accident, you should consider doing the following:

#1. Call 911 Immediately

After a car crash, you should call the local authorities immediately. This is the fastest way to get your accident on record and notify the police and medical personnel of the collision and your injuries. Once the police arrive and investigate the accident, they can jot down their findings in their police report. If you decide to pursue legal action, this report can provide you and your attorney with valuable details about what happened and who was at fault.

#2. Get Contact Details

Try to get information from all those involved in the accident, including their names, contact details, insurance information, and driver’s license numbers.

Yet, as you talk to these individuals after the collision, watch what you say. Remember that the insurer will use the statements and comments you make after an accident against you. For these reasons, you should avoid making any definitive statements about the accident, apologizing for what happened, or taking the blame for what occurred.

#3. Gather Evidence from the Area

If the accident scene is safe and you can do so, take as many videos and pictures of the accident scene as you can. This should include photos of your visible injuries, the vehicles in the accident, their placement on the road, the weather conditions, any road defects, skid marks on the street, traffic signs and signals near the area, and any other evidence that can show what happened.

The point of securing all this evidence is to help you establish fault and show that another individual was responsible for your accident. However, if your injuries prevent you from gathering this evidence, do not stress. Once you hire an experienced car accident attorney, these skilled legal professionals can work on obtaining this evidence on your behalf.

#4. Check for Witnesses

If people at the scene saw what happened, get their names and phone numbers. They can often provide you and your lawyer with helpful details regarding the collision that back your claim.

#5. Keep Records and Reports

Following the accident, you want to keep copies of all your reports and the bills related to the crash, including car damage bills, medical bills, and other associated expenses. In addition, you will also want to document the time you had to miss from work because of your injuries.

These bills and records can help your attorney understand the full extent of your losses and damages and go after the full compensation you need.

#6. Get to a Doctor

Even if your injuries appear to be minor following a car crash, you should still get to a doctor as soon as possible. Symptoms of many serious injuries, such as brain trauma and spinal cord injuries, can take some time to manifest. Yet, the longer you wait to get these conditions checked out, the more debilitating and fatal they can become.

In addition, getting this prompt medical treatment can also help your legal claim, especially since the insurance company is looking for any reason to deny your case. As a result, when you do not get this treatment shortly after your accident, the insurer will argue that your injuries are not that serious or resulted from a subsequent event.

Fortunately, a doctor can write down details about your accident and injuries in their medical report, providing you with evidence of a direct link between your car crash and the harm you sustained.

File Your Legal Claim Before Time Runs Out

One important thing to understand is that time is of the essence when filing a legal claim following a car accident. This is because of the statute of limitations-which is a law that dictates the amount of time you have to file a legal suit after an alleged offense. If you do not file your case within this allotted time, you cannot recover compensation for your harm losses.

For instance, in California, the statute of limitations to file a legal claim following a car accident is two years. However, exceptions may apply to this rule that can impact this filing period. As a result, you should reach out to an experienced car accident attorney as soon as you can after your car crash. These lawyers can not only promptly review your accident and figure out the maximum amount of time you have to file your case, but they can make sure to file your legal motions with the appropriate court before the statute of limitations runs out.

Financial Damages You May Pursue in a Motor Vehicle Accident Lawsuit

You might be entitled to specific compensation if you suffered injuries in a car accident because of another person’s wrongful, reckless, or negligent actions. In general, this compensation often includes the following types of damages:

Economic Damages

These damages refer to the easily measurable and verifiable losses that result from an accident.

They include:

  • Past and current medical bills related to doctor bills, hospital stay, emergency services such as ambulance rides, surgeries, prescription medications, medical assistive devices, and other costs associated with your care
  • Future medical expenses
  • Lost wages and reduced earning capacity
  • Rehabilitative services such as physical and occupational therapy
  • Replacement domestic care services
  • Personal property damages
  • Other out-of-pocket expenses

Non-Economic Damages

These damages refer to the more personal losses that occur from an accident.

These losses are not easy to quantify and tend to include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Loss of reputation
  • Loss of companionship
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of enjoyment and quality of life
  • Disfigurement
  • Scarring

In addition, depending on the circumstances, victims of a car crash may also recover punitive damages.

How Can an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Help You Go After the Financial Recovery You Deserve?

If you need compensation following your motor vehicle accident due to another person’s wrongful actions, you not only need a solid understanding of the state’s laws but detailed evidence and strong legal arguments proving your case. However, following this debilitating accident, this is probably the last thing on your mind.

Fortunately, with an experienced motor vehicle accident lawyer on your side, you will not have to tackle this complex legal battle alone.

Instead, once you retain an attorney, they can:

  • Go over the facts of the car crash with you in detail, evaluate your legal claim, and determine if you have a valid case.
  • Go over your questions and concerns and help you determine the legal options you should pursue.
  • Thoroughly investigate the incident and secure the evidence needed to show fault and damages.
  • Figure out who caused your accident and hold each party accountable for your losses.
  • Hire experts to validate your claim, including accident re constructionists, doctors, and financial specialists.
  • Handle all the settlement negotiations with the other side and fight for a just settlement offer.
  • Proceed to trial and go after maximum compensation if the other side won’t pay you the money you need.

If a car crash disrupts your life or the life of a family member, do not wait any longer to get the legal help you need. Instead, contact an experienced car accident attorney today for a free case evaluation and find out how this skilled legal team can help you fight for the justice you deserve.

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