If a negligent driver caused a sideswipe collision that left you seriously injured, you deserve compensation. The injuries you or a loved one suffered can result in substantial medical costs and lost income. The impact on your life is significant, as are your damages.
How Sideswipe Collisions Occur
When another driver makes contact with the side of your vehicle, the results are generally tragic and devastating.
Such close contact should never occur, and when it does take place, one or more of these behaviors or actions are sometimes the reason why:
- Distracted driving: According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there are three main types of distraction: visual, manual, and cognitive. Texting and driving behind the wheel involve all three forms of distraction. Other distractions include passengers, eating, or reaching for items.
- Drunk driving: Alcohol can impair a driver’s judgment and delay their reaction times. When an impaired driver realizes they are too close to another driver, it is generally too late to avoid a tragic collision.
- Aggressive driving: Impatient drivers who fail to share the road can cause other drivers serious harm. Examples of aggressive driving include speeding, purposely tailgating, and blocking a driver from changing lanes. Aggressive driving can develop quickly into road rage.
- Drowsy driving: A late-night shift, no rest, or an undiagnosed sleep disorder can cause a driver to drift into your lane. A sideswipe collision that results from another person’s inability to stay awake.
There is no way to predict the behavior or reckless actions of another driver. Sharing the road responsibly means obeying all traffic laws and maintaining control of a vehicle.
A sideswipe collision can occur when vehicles travel side by side or in opposite directions. If you experienced a sideswipe collision, think about contacting a car accident lawyer today. The injuries you suffered due to a negligent driver demand justice, and a lawyer can help you pursue it.
Sideswipe Collision and Your Accident Injuries
The severe injuries that resulted from your accident may require a lifetime of expensive medical and personal care. Catastrophic injuries can prevent you from working, which makes paying for such care challenging.
Common types of injuries with long-term costs include:
Spinal cord injury: This catastrophic injury can require millions in medical and personal care throughout a patient’s lifetime. A spinal cord injury is either complete or incomplete, resulting in limited or no movement or sensation.
In addition to home modifications and power chairs for mobility, frequent re-hospitalizations can add to mounting medical costs. When the spinal cord injury results from negligence, a car accident lawyer can help you with a civil claim and lawsuit.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI): A severe brain injury disrupts normal brain function, according to the CDC.
The violent impact of a sideswipe collision can result in a bump, blow, jolt, or penetrating head injury that affects:
- Cognitive skills: Examples include problem-solving and memory issues
- Mobility: Muscle weakness, balance problems, and poor coordination
- Behavior: Changes in personality, mood swings, depression, anger
- Sensation: Hearing, vision, ability to taste or touch
Watching a loved one struggle with relearning basic skills is emotionally difficult. Therapy, rehabilitation, and perhaps a skilled nursing facility are sometimes necessary for their care.
Providing your loved ones with the care they need is costly. If your loved one suffered a TBI due to a reckless driver sideswiping their car, give careful thought to contacting an attorney as soon as possible.
Fractured bones: A sideswipe collision can result in more than a broken arm or leg. With hundreds of bones in the human body, the traumatic impact of such an accident can cause multiple fractured bones. The location of the broken bones within the body and the severity of the fracture can determine your path of recovery.
Surgery, physical therapy, and more can leave you unable to perform simple tasks. Paying for personal care to help with daily needs such as bathing, dressing, and cooking is expensive.
Burns: An especially severe sideswipe collision can result in a vehicle fire. Third-degree burns can result in excruciating pain and require transport to a burn center for treatment.
This level of burns can affect more than your skin. Tendons, muscles, and even bone can experience damage from a third-degree burn. Plastic surgery and protection from dangerous infections are sometimes necessary.
Internal injuries: A sideswipe collision can leave you in a state of shock. This dangerous state of an adrenaline rush may confuse you into assuming you are fine. A diagnosis of an internal injury—like that of internal bleeding—can impact your life forever. Organ damage is just one possible outcome of such an injury if left untreated.
These and other serious injuries set the course for your present and future. The uncertainty of paying your expenses, if you can return to your career, and the extensive costs associated with your care are not fair.
Concentrating on your medical care and treatment is essential for your health. A car accident lawyer familiar with side-swipe cases can protect you from aggressive insurance adjusters by managing your claim and lawsuit.
When to Contact a Car Accident Lawyer
The sudden changes to your life can cause you to lose track of time. Days and weeks pass quickly as you worry about your future.
Contacting a car accident lawyer as soon as possible is important for several reasons:
- Insurance adjusters: An insurance adjuster may contact you before you have a chance to retain a lawyer. Hiring a car accident lawyer before accepting a settlement offer protects you from receiving less compensation than you deserve.
- Collection of evidence: The lawyer you hire needs time to investigate the accident and to determine liability. They must collect evidence as soon after the accident as possible. Witness memories fade, and accident scene photos can become lost; quick action is imperative for proving negligence.
- Statute of limitations: While this depends on the state, California law, for example, allows two years for pursuing a car accident lawsuit. To accident victims, this seems like a long time; however, there are generally no options for pursuing compensation once the deadline passes.
These and other factors can impact your civil case. By contacting a car accident lawyer sooner rather than later, you can start the process toward justice for your unexpected and devastating life changes.
Proactive Approach to Protecting Your Future
Securing the assistance of a car accident attorney is a proactive step to protecting your future. Compensation is never guaranteed, yet it is your right to pursue it.
The decisions you make following your accident can greatly impact your finances and access to future medical care. For example, should your medical condition worsen and your car accident claim is now closed, you may not pursue additional compensation.
Accepting an initial settlement offer without an attorney by your side can jeopardize your legal options. A civil case is complex and difficult to manage alone.
You are not alone when you hire a car accident attorney to stand by your side. The knowledge that you do not need to learn legal details or handle aggressive insurance adjusters can alleviate some of your stress.
Car accident attorneys work to help accident victims in their time of need. Insurance companies are difficult and sometimes reluctant when it comes to the negotiation process. A desire to protect profits generally supersedes the needs of accident victims. This is unfair, and your attorney will firmly fight for the compensation you need and deserve.
If you suffered serious injuries in a sideswipe collision, you may want to contact a car accident attorney today for a free case evaluation.
You Can Afford to Hire an Attorney
The first step toward pursuing a car accident lawsuit is a free, no-obligation case evaluation. If you decide to proceed with a civil case, you may find that the law firm works on a contingency fee basis. With no deposit or retainer needed, you can pursue compensation and pay no legal fees if your case is unsuccessful.
Hiring the right attorney for your specific claim and lawsuit is important for achieving the best possible outcome. Insurance companies protect their best interests and, in some cases, have their own legal teams.
An experienced car accident attorney understands how to negotiate with insurance companies of all sizes. Your lawyer will not stop until they secure a fair settlement for you, and if necessary, they are willing to go to court.
Fighting your case alone is stressful and something you do not need as you recover from your injuries. When it comes to car accident claims and lawsuits, you cannot afford not to contact an Orange County attorney today.
Fatal Sideswipe Collisions
A fatal sideswipe collision that resulted in the loss of a close loved one is extremely tragic. The news of their untimely passing due to the reckless behavior of another driver can turn your world upside down.
A wrongful death lawyer can determine if your relationship with the decedent qualifies you for pursuing a civil case.
The damages that result from a loved one’s death typically include:
- Funeral and burial costs
- Lost wages
- Loss of future income had your loved one survived
- Loss of companionship and support with the home and children
- Loss of inheritance for surviving children
The grief you experience may leave you unable to deal with the complexities involved with a wrongful death case. A lawyer can handle the aggressive insurance adjusters, the reluctant insurance companies and present your case at trial, if necessary.
While they actively fight for you, they will also treat you with compassion during this most upsetting time. Wrongful death lawyers are caring and support grieving families as they mourn for their sudden loss.
Money cannot replace a loved one; however, it can help with unexpected expenses, like the cost of a funeral.
Sideswipe Collisions and Your Future
A sideswipe collision should never occur. Each driver has a responsibility to use care around other drivers. Actions and behaviors that result in bad choices are inexcusable when it comes to the death or harm of others.
The driver responsible for the major changes in your life may face criminal charges. These charges will not impact your civil action. The two areas of law are separate, and no matter the outcome of the criminal case, civil action can still move forward.
Holding the negligent driver accountable for their actions is an important step in ensuring justice is done. Pursuing compensation takes time, but time is usually not on your side following a sideswipe collision. This is why it’s important to act now, and ensure you are properly compensated by the negligent party or parties responsible for your injuries.