Can I Sue After a Car Accident?
Can I Sue After a Car Accident

Can I Sue After a Car Accident?

If you’re asking, “Can I sue after a car accident?” you can. An even more essential question is, “Should I file a lawsuit?” The answer to that depends on several factors, which we’ll explore in this article. If you’ve suffered an injury due to another driver’s negligence, you must speak with a skilled car accident attorney in Johnstown to protect your rights.

Understanding Liability in Car Accidents

There were 6.1 million car accidents reported to police across the US in a recent year. In those crashes, more than five million people suffered injuries serious enough to require medical attention. Many injury victims had to sue after a car accident to obtain the compensation they deserved.

Establishing fault is critical to determining liability in car accident cases. If the other party’s negligent actions, such as speeding, distracted driving, or running a red light, caused the accident and your injuries, they’re liable for your damages. However, proving fault requires evidence.

Determining liability after a car accident is a crucial aspect of any personal injury case, and it’s a car accident lawyer’s job to navigate this process effectively. Here’s how an attorney typically does it.

Investigating the Accident

The first step in determining liability is thoroughly investigating the circumstances leading to the wreck. This may involve gathering evidence such as accident scene pictures, witness statements, surveillance footage, and police reports. The car accident lawyer will carefully review all the evidence to understand what happened and who may be at fault.

Analyzing Traffic Laws

Lawyers are well-versed in traffic laws and regulations, which play a significant role in determining liability. They’ll analyze whether traffic violations, such as speeding, running a red light, or failure to yield, contributed to the accident. Violating traffic laws can be strong evidence of negligence and liability.

Reviewing Medical Records

Your car accident attorney will also review medical records to assess the extent of your injuries and what caused them. Medical records can provide valuable insight into the severity of the injuries and their impact on your life, which can help establish liability.

Determining Legal Responsibility

Liability in Car Accidents

Your lawyer will determine legal responsibility based on the evidence gathered and analyzed. They’ll identify who was negligent and, therefore, liable for the accident and resulting damages. This determination forms the basis of the legal strategy, whether it involves negotiating a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance company or pursuing a personal injury lawsuit.

Your attorney will fight for your rights. They’ll work tirelessly to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries, damages, and losses. They’ll do all they can to hold the negligent parties accountable for their actions.

How an Attorney Will Help You Obtain Compensation

The reason you might sue after a car accident, of course, is to get money to pay for your medical bills and other accident-related expenses. Some steps your car accident lawyer will take to seek that money include the following.

Filing an Insurance Claim

The first step in seeking compensation after a car accident is to file an insurance claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. This process involves submitting documentation of the accident, your injuries, and your damages to the insurance adjuster for review. If liability is clear and your damages are well-documented, you may receive a settlement offer to cover your losses.

Negotiating a Settlement

If you receive that offer, you can negotiate for a higher amount. Insurance adjusters often make lowball offers in the hopes of resolving the claim quickly and for less than it’s worth. By presenting additional evidence, such as medical records, receipts, and expert opinions, your attorney can strengthen your case and increase the likelihood of receiving a fair settlement.

Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

If negotiations with the insurance company fail to result in a satisfactory settlement, your car accident attorney can file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault party. This legal action allows you to seek compensation for your injuries and damages through the court system. A successful lawsuit can result in a judgment awarding you damages for medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and other losses.

Meeting All Deadlines

Knowing the statute of limitations (the time limit for filing a lawsuit) is essential. Different states have different statutes of limitations. In Pennsylvania, for example, the deadline is typically two years from the accident date.

Please file a lawsuit before this deadline to avoid the court dismissing your case and forfeiting your right to seek compensation. Consulting with an attorney will ensure you meet all legal deadlines and requirements.

Factors Affecting the Decision to Sue

Negotiating a Settlement

Deciding whether or not to sue after a car accident requires careful consideration. Please keep the following in mind when making your choice.

The Severity of Your Injuries

The severity of your injuries and the extent of your damages are significant factors in determining whether to sue after a car accident. If you’ve suffered severe injuries that result in substantial medical expenses, lost income, and long-term disability, pursuing legal action may be necessary to recover total compensation for your losses.

Insurance Coverage

The at-fault party’s insurance coverage and policy limits can impact your ability to recover damages through a lawsuit. If they don’t have enough coverage to compensate you for your damages fully, you may need to explore other avenues for compensation. These avenues include underinsured motorist coverage or pursuing a personal injury lawsuit.

Out-of-Pocket Expenses

If you’re facing out-of-pocket expenses for medical treatment, property damage repairs, and other accident-related costs, you should take legal action to recover these losses. An attorney can calculate the total value of your damages and recommend the best course of action.

Future Needs

Also, please consider your future needs and expenses related to the accident. If you need ongoing medical treatment, rehabilitation, or modifications to your home or vehicle, you may need additional compensation to cover these costs. A lawsuit can be your best chance of obtaining that money.

Let a Skilled Car Accident Attorney Guide You Through Your Next Steps

Now that you know you can sue after a car accident, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible to determine whether you should do so. An ethical lawyer will spell out the pros and cons of legal action so you can make the best-informed choice.

If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a car accident in State College, the personal injury attorneys at Marcus & Mack can help you navigate the legal process and seek the compensation you deserve. Contact us today at (814) 238-3480 or through our online form for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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