Can You Sue Someone for Lying About a Car Accident? | Auto Accident Lawyers

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s likely that you’re considering whether you can actually sue someone for causing the accident.  This might seem straightforward at first glance, but in reality, many defendants are “shady.”  They hide information, twist the facts, and lie outright. So, can you sue someone for lying about the facts in a car accident case

This can be extremely frustrating, as you might have already felt confused and overwhelmed by the prospect of a lawsuit.  With the defendant lying about the car accident, it may feel like the case has become even more complicated.  This isn’t an unreasonable reaction.  After all, conflicting stories in a car accident requires a bit of extra work.  Proving the “truth” isn’t always easy. 

Fear not!  Experienced attorneys can help.  Defendants lie relatively often, so there are strategic tools in place to “suss” out the lies.  If you’d like to learn more before speaking to an attorney, let’s explore the basics.

Why Do People Lie About Car Accidents? 

Though it may seem like the answer is obvious, it’s important to break this down: why do people lie about car accidents? 

At a basic level, defendants lie to avoid liability.  In a lawsuit, liability can lead to a significant damages payout, so defendants will often do whatever it takes to ensure that the court doesn’t find that they are at-fault.  By twisting the factual narrative around the case, the defendant may be attempting to create a new story that paints them in a favorable light. 

There are a number of avenues for the defendant to twist the narrative — for example, the defendant could lie to police at the scene of the accident, and those lying statements will be recorded in the police report.  In many cases, the defendant isn’t considering the lawsuit when making false statements.  When dealing with police, these false statements are made to avoid ticketing, fines, or an arrest. 

If you’re trying to sue someone for injuring you in a car accident, this lying can make you feel frustrated, even overwhelmed.  After all, you might not know how the defendant’s lies are going to impact your case, and how to counter the lies.  Well, don’t worry!  Experienced car accident attorneys are very familiar with handling false statements by defendants, and understand how to draft probing investigative questions to reveal the lies. 

What if Someone is Lying About a Car Accident?  How the Lie Can Impact Your Case. 

Okay, so we know that people often lie about the details of a car accident to try and minimize their role in causing it.  At this point, it’s not unreasonable to think: can you sue someone for lying?  

The answer is no — but that doesn’t mean it isn’t useful.  The defendant’s lies can give you a strategic advantage. 

See, lying about a car accident doesn’t create a lawsuit by itself.  If you can prove that the defendant lied, however, it can “enhance” your case (i.e., easier to undermine the defendant’s narrative, access additional damages, etc.). 

In a typical car accident dispute, one of the major challenges is proving that the defendant is liable for your injuries.  In other words, proving that they are at-fault.  The defendant may attempt to avoid liability by painting a favorable version of the factual narrative.  This may include exaggerations and lies. 

If you can point out discrepancies, there are two major impacts: 1) the court may determine that the defendant’s conduct is egregious enough to justify bonus punitive damages (which can increase your compensation significantly), and 2) it will be much easier to undermine all other statements made by the defendant, as the court will be less likely to believe them. 

Ready to Sue Someone?  Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 for a Free Consultation 

If you’ve been injured in a car accident — whether or not you believe that the defendant is lying about the facts — you should speak to an experienced attorney about your case

Call our team at 1-800-THE-LAW2 to connect to a qualified car accident attorney in just 10 minutes or less.  Consultation is free and confidential, so there’s really no downside to having a conversation. 

We look forward to assisting you. 

Why You Need a Lawyer Even if Your Case is Going to Settle | Injury Accident Lawyers

Many injury victims mistakenly believe that the at-fault party’s insurance company will take care of them, no fuss required. Sadly, this doesn’t usually happen. Insurance companies are for profit. They are in business to make money. If they paid everyone fairly for their claims, their profits would go down. In fact, insurance companies are notorious for engaging in manipulative strategies to avoid having to pay injured parties. 

What Can Claimants Do to Fight for Fair Compensation? 

The best decision you can make is to hire an experienced personal injury attorney. Even if you think that your case will conclude in an “easy settlement,” you still need the knowledge and skillset of a personal injury attorney to maximize the settlement amount.  

Why Do You Need a Lawyer? 

You’re not a trained attorney. That means you don’t know the ins-and-outs of detailed court procedures, let alone have the strategic experience to understand how to properly interrogate witnesses and present evidence in court. 

In fact, this depth of knowledge is considered so crucial, that American courts discourage claimants from moving forward without an attorney. It’s a choice that you’re legally allowed to make, but a foolish one – like swallowing a tube of poison to test whether it will harm you. 

Take the time to heal and recover from your injuries. Focus on your recovery. Do not concern yourself with things that are beyond your experience and training. Unless you’re a personal injury attorney yourself, you simply don’t know how to negotiate a settlement with a hostile insurance company, for example. 

What Are the Responsibilities of Personal Injury Lawyers?

The responsibilities of personal injury attorneys include: 

  • Investigate your injuries and how they happened 
  • Identify the liable parties—if there is more than one, this can maximize your compensation 
  • Hold the right parties accountable for your damages 
  • Collect evidence  
  • Research all applicable insurance policies 
  • Protect you from falling victim to the insurance company’s tactics 
  • Ensure all your damages are accounted for within your demand for compensation 
  • Prepare your case for trial if you don’t receive a reasonable settlement offer  
  • Represent you at trial, if you decide to take your claim to trial

Is it Better to Settle or Go to Trial? 

In general, an out of court settlement is preferable to going to trial. There are many benefits for both parties if they can agree to settle out of court

These benefits include: 

  • Decreased cost overall—it’s more expensive to go to court 
  • Decreased time to resolve the claim—you don’t have to prepare for trial and wait for a court date 
  • More control over the resolution of the claim—you aren’t putting the fate of your case in the hands of a judge or jury 

Injured parties can also avoid the hassle and anxiety of going before a judge and jury, while insurance companies, and sometimes clients, can preserve their reputation by not having the ordeal on a permanent and public court record. Most cases end in a settlement, due to a combination of these benefits.  

That being said, skilled attorneys understand that part of getting a “high” settlement is being ready and able to go to trial, if necessary. The threat of a trial has to be there to maximize the settlement amount

The Settlement Negotiation Process 

During the settlement negotiation, your attorney will be deeply familiar with the strengths and weaknesses of your claim. Typically, settlement negotiations begin after your attorney sends an initial demand letter to the at-fault party or their insurance company. This letter describes in detail:

  • What happened
  • Why you deserve compensation
  • Wow much you are requesting
  • And why  

Once the insurance company or their attorney receives this settlement demand letter, they will reach out to your personal injury attorney and make a counteroffer to the demand letter. This usually begins settlement negotiations. The negotiations can happen in person, at scheduled meetings, over the phone, or via email. The negotiation process can last days, weeks, months, or even longer. It varies from case to case.  

It’s your injury attorney’s responsibility to present you with the personal injury settlement offers, and to provide you with legal advice as to whether it’s an acceptable offer. In the end, YOU are the one who gets to decide if a personal injury settlement offer is acceptable. In the event that you do not receive any acceptable settlement offers, you can elect to move forward towards court litigation. 

Do bear in mind that accident settlements can be reached even after the trial starts. If you do agree to a settlement, you are required to sign a form agreeing not to pursue accident compensation for the same reason, and sometimes, to refrain from disclosing the details of the settlement.  

What Happens at a Settlement Meeting? 

Attorneys generally work through the negotiation process themselves. Usually, your attorney will ask for a settlement amount close to what was initially demanded. The defending party will likely point out a few weaknesses in your case and make a counteroffer. Your accident attorney will then point out weaknesses in their arguments, and will serve up another counteroffer. This offer-counteroffer dynamic will go back and forth until their efforts are exhausted or they reach an agreement for the value of your personal injury claim. Your attorney will let you know when it might be a good idea to accept a settlement offer.  

Speak with an Injury Lawyer Today 

Insurance companies know that claimants with legal representation are serious about getting the compensation they deserve for their injuries. They also know that personal injury lawyers know the true value of their client’s injury claim, so presenting a lowball offer won’t work. So you can increase your chances of a full and fair accident settlement by relying on an experienced personal injury attorney to represent your case. 

Call us at 1-800-THE-LAW2 or fill out our form to get connected to a qualified attorney in your area in just 10 minutes or less. Legal consultation is free, so don’t delay!

How Much Can Someone Sue for a Car Accident? | Lawyers for Car Accidents

Questions this article can help to answer: How much can someone sue for in a car accident? | What is your accident claim worth? | What is the difference between economic damages and non-economic damages? | How much does it cost to sue someone? | Why is my car accident settlement taking so long? | How long does a car accident settlement take? 

Despite safe driving campaigns and the introduction of new safety features, car accidents still occur at an alarming rate. These accidents can vary quite a bit. Some cause little to no injury, while others can lead to life altering injuries. Regardless of the extent of your injuries, you may wonder: “how much money can I sue for in a car accident?” 

We understand. You deserve to be compensated for losses you suffered after an accident. Until you speak to an experienced car accidents attorney, there is no “simple” answer. An accident attorney will listen to the factual narrative, then be able to piece together an estimation of the monetary potential in your case. 

How Much Can Someone Sue for in a Car Accident? 

There really is no limit to how much money you can recover in an auto accident lawsuit. However, that doesn’t mean that you will get as much as you ask. In all accident lawsuits, to secure compensation, you have to be able to prove your damages. If you cannot introduce evidence that supports your argument, you will not get the compensation you seek. 

Proving damages in a car accident case can be difficult, which is why injury victims turn to experienced car accident attorneys for help. Skilled traffic accident lawyers know how to identify all the damages, and also how to assess their true value. Then, to prove those damages, they take steps to gather sufficient evidence. 

Typical Car Accident Settlement Amounts

Car accident settlement amounts depend on many other factors: 

  • What area of the country you are located in  
  • The insurance policies involved and their coverage limits 
  • The assets of the person responsible for your accident 

What is Your Claim Worth? 

The value of your auto accident claim derives from your damages. Most car accident injury victims have both economic and non-economic damages that make up the value of their accident claim.  

Assessing Economic Vs. Non-Economic Damages

What Are Examples of Economic Damages?

Economic damages include: 

  • Lost wages and income 
  • Medical bills and expenses 
  • Property damage 

Economic damages are worth their face value. They are also relatively easy to establish with documentation such as estimates, bills, and receipts. 

What Are Non-Economic Damages?

On the other hand, non-economic damages are quite subjective, don’t have a face value, and lack much evidence other than possible witness testimony. Their value is typically based on the value of your economic damages in some way, such as using a multiplier related to the severity of the injuries suffered. 

What Are Examples of Non-Economic Damages?

Non-economic damages include: 

  • Pain and suffering 
  • Loss of enjoyment of life 
  • Loss of consortium 
  • Scarring and disfigurement  
  • Humiliation 
  • Mental anguish 

How Much Does it Cost to Sue Someone? 

Nothing. 

Zilch. 

Zero. 

NO OUT OF POCKET COSTS. 

That’s right. Experienced car accident attorneys typically work on contingency. What does that mean? That means that you only pay them if, and when, you win compensation in the case. They’ll take a percentage cut of the total compensation, anywhere from 25 to 40 percent, usually. This makes legal assistance extremely accessible in a car accident dispute. You don’t have to pay anything unless you win. And even when you do win, you only pay out of the money that your car accidents attorney has won for you. Really, it’s a win-win situation. 

Why Is My Car Accident Settlement Taking So Long?

Unfortunately, it can be tricky to determine precisely how long a car accident settlement will take to resolve. The person who can best answer this question is your own attorney, as they will know all the details of your case.  

How Long Does a Car Accident Settlement Take? 

Even the simplest of car accident cases can be expected to take several weeks or even months. Complex cases, such as those with multiple at fault parties, victims, or catastrophic injuries, can take a year, or more. That being said, in cases where fault is abundantly clear, a settlement can happen rather quickly. To expedite this process, contact an attorney as soon as you can after realizing you have sustained injuries in a car accident. Being cooperative with your attorney will help speed it along, too.  

Are You Ready to Talk to an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer About Your Claim? 

If you have questions about a potential car accident claim or are ready to secure legal help, call 1-800-THE-LAW2 or complete the form below. Consultation is free, and you’ll get connected to a qualified attorney near you in 10 minutes or less. Don’t delay! Get the help you need. 

How to Choose the Right Accident Lawyer for Your Claim | Accident Attorneys Near You

Being in a car accident can make you feel like your life is in a tailspin, but when you hire an experienced car accident lawyer, you’ll have an advocate and guide through these difficult times. It can, in turn, make the situation much easier to manage. You might have lingering pain and need to seek continued medical care. You might not be sure how to take care of all of your bills, get your car fixed, and all the logistics that come in the aftermath of the motor vehicle collision. It’s easy to get overwhelmed. But how do you choose the “right” lawyer?  Let’s take a peek. 

What Does a Car Accident Lawyer Do? 

A knowledgeable car accident lawyer has a variety of responsibilities, and their skillset empowers your claim in a number of different ways. Their main responsibility, however, shift the burden off your shoulders and to secure a win, and in doing so, maximize your compensation

Car accident lawyers can do the following: 

  • Explain your legal rights and options and provide legal advice in plain language so you can understand 
  • Determine the value of your case 
  • Develop a persuasive legal argument and present it to the other side 
  • Gather and preserve evidence to support your claim 
  • Identify every liable party 
  • Discover ALL available sources of compensation 
  • Ensure that your case is in-sync with procedural requirements 
  • Keep your case moving in a timely manner 
  • Negotiate full and fair settlements 
  • Pursue trial litigation if a settlement can’t be reached 

How Do I Find the Right Car Accident Lawyer? 

Finding the right car accident lawyer begins with searching for lawyers in your area that might be a good fit. This can be extremely difficult, however – many lawyers pay the same marketing companies to setup their websites, and it’s not clear how to differentiate between lawyer services, experience, and advantages. 

As an individual who isn’t intimately familiar with lawyering, and how to choose a lawyer, it can feel like an arbitrary, random process to choose the right lawyer by simply exploring your local options. 

We offer a great alternative. Instead of worrying about which lawyer fits your case, we do the legwork for you. Our lawyers are experienced car accident attorneys who have signed up to take on clients through our platform. They are ready and able to take on cases like yours. When you call in or complete our online form, we connect you to an experienced, skilled local attorney – you don’t have to worry about how to choose. 

What to Look for When Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer 

That being said, even after you’re connected with an attorney, you may still want to determine whether they’re the right one to move forward with. Finding the best accident lawyer for your case really requires that you know what to look for.  So here’s a few aspects to consider: 

Reputation

Were they recommended to you by someone you know? Have they been peer-reviewed? Do they have a proven track record? Are they in good standing with your state’s bar association? Have they ever been disciplined by the bar, and if so, why? 

Practice Experience

How long has the attorney been practicing personal injury law, or more specifically, representing car accident clients? Do they only focus on personal injury or car accident claims, or do they dabble in other areas of the law, too, such as criminal, family, or estate law? How many car accident clients do they represent each year? Have they handled similar cases to yours? The more time they have spent focused on personal injury law, especially in car accidents, the better.  

Fee Arrangements

Will they charge a contingency fee or an hourly rate? How much will they charge for legal services? Most personal injury attorneys work under contingency fee arrangements, meaning you pay nothing unless or until they obtain compensation in your case. 

Communication Style and Personality

Do you feel comfortable speaking with them? How do they communicate with clients—phone, email, text? How quickly do they generally get back to clients? Do they have the time to personally handle your case now? Can you see yourself working with them for at least several months or not a year or more? Do you feel understood by them? Do they seem particularly rushed? 

Strategy

What do they see as the best strategy in your case? What do they believe are the strengths and weaknesses in your case? Do they have the professional connections and resources to manage your case? 

Characteristics of an Excellent Car Accident Attorney 

It’s also crucial to look for people-skills in a car accident lawyer. Some may be more important to you than others, but in general, an excellent car accident attorney will

  • Be compassionate and seem genuinely concerned about your situation 
  • Be patient in negotiations 
  • Be easily understood as they are an excellent communicator 
  • Be passionate and driven to obtain financial compensation for your claim 
  • Have extensive knowledge of personal injury law 
  • Have a successful professional record 
  • Provide clear guidance 
  • Be willing to build relationships with clients 
  • Work to understand your goals for your case 
  • Upon their legal advice, allow you to decide whether to settle your claim or proceed to trial 

You may not be able to observe all of these qualities when meeting with them. However, looking at Google reviews or reviews on their website or social media can help you get a feel for the type of attorney they are and could be for you. 

Are You Looking for the Best Car Accident Attorney? 

If you are looking for the best auto accident attorney to help with your claim, look no further – you’ve come to the right place. Call us at 1-800-THE-LAW2 or complete the form below.  We’ll get you connected to a reputable car accident attorney in just 10 minutes or less. Consultation is free, so don’t delay! Get your claim started today so you can get the compensation you deserve for your car accident

Choosing the Best Car Accident Attorney for You

How do you choose the best car accident attorney for you? 

You probably don’t have to look far to find personal injury lawyers near you. Maybe you’ve seen their ads on television, social media, buses, or billboards. But now, it actually matters. You have injuries from a car accident, and you want to hire a lawyer. You might be tempted to call, and hire the first attorney that comes to mind.  

That being said, you should make sure to choose the “best” car accident attorney for you. Remember that the right attorney for your friend or family member may not be the right one for you. Everyone has different needs and communication styles. 

Why You Need a Car Accident Attorney 

First, consider why you need a lawyer in the first place. You may not even realize all the benefits of having one, but learning what they can do for you can help narrow your search. A car accident attorney can: 

  • Manage your car accident claim 
  • Handle communications with the insurance company and their legal team 
  • Collect necessary evidence  
  • Investigate the accident 
  • Determine who is liable for the accident 
  • Negotiate a settlement 
  • File a lawsuit if necessary and litigate the case 
  • Provide guidance and support throughout the entire legal process 

Technically, you don’t HAVE to hire a lawyer to file a car accident claim. However, courts do highly discourage going without an attorney, and for good reason. 

Attorneys know the law and all the procedures, and they know how to push for maximum compensation. Car accident attorneys also typically work on contingency: they only get paid when you do.  So it’s absolutely in your best interest to have legal representation. 

Understanding what a lawyer can do for you can help you know what qualities to look for when hiring one. Since it’s best to have a seasoned car accident lawyer on your side sooner rather than later, start your search as soon as possible after your accident. It’s also a good idea to refrain from speaking with the insurance company until you have an attorney on your side. 

How to Choose the Best Car Accident Attorney 

Choosing the best attorney for your car accident means choosing someone that’s a good fit for you and someone who possesses certain qualities and characteristics.

What are the qualities of the best car accident lawyer? 

Experience  

Good accidents lawyers will have several years of experience in car accident cases, such as those involving: 

In fact, it’s best to choose an attorney whose area of focus is that of motor vehicle accidents. In general, the more focused a lawyer’s practice is, the better the chances of you obtaining the full and fair value of your accident claim. 

Fees 

Speak to your potential attorney about their fee structure. Most car accident attorneys provide free initial consultations, even if you decide not to use their services. In addition, many accident attorneys work only for contingency fees.

How Much Does a Car Accident Lawyer Cost Out of Pocket?

A contingency fee arrangement means you pay them nothing upfront and nothing until they win your car accident case. You owe them nothing if they don’t settle your case or win your lawsuit in court

What Percentage Do Most Injury Lawyers Take?

When and if they do recover money for your car accident damages, they receive payment from those funds. The amount they receive is usually determined by a percentage of the total recovery and is agreed upon when you hire them. Even after paying their fees, it’s worth getting a car accident attorney as nearly all accident victims will receive more compensation with an attorney on their side. 

Communication 

Do you feel like the attorney understands you? And, do you have a good report? How do they handle your questions and concerns along the way? Do you feel at ease talking to them? It’s crucial to feel comfortable talking to the attorney you hire and how they want you to communicate with them going forward. While your ultimate goal is financial compensation for your damages, you should feel supported and at ease during the process. 

Peer Respect and Reputation 

Do your research to determine how others in the legal community view your potential attorney, such as judges, past clients, and other lawyers. How are their online reviews? Have they been disciplined by or reported to the state bar? What professional recognitions or awards have they received?  

A Professional Office 

When you visit the prospective attorney’s office, is it professional? Are the staff courteous and friendly? Is it clean and well-kept? Is it easily accessible? You will likely be in the office several times throughout the course of your case and interacting with the office staff, so this is a crucial part of your decision. Unfortunately, not all car accident lawyers have a professional office. 

Find the Best Auto Accident Attorney Today

If you’re ready to get started choosing the best car accident attorney for your case, call 1-800-THE-LAW2 or complete our contact form. You’ll be connected to reputable attorney in your area within 10 minutes.  During the free consultation, you’ll learn more about the possibilities for your case, as well as next steps.

How Much Does a Car Accident Attorney Cost Out of Pocket? | Auto Accident Lawyers

Questions that this article will help to answer: What is the cost to hire a car accident attorney after a crash | What is a contingency arrangement | How does a contingency arrangement work | What contingency fee percentage should I expect | What are the benefits to hiring a car accident lawyer based on a contingency plan | Why seek assistance after a car crash with a car accident attorney

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, chances are that you’ve at least considered the possibility of working with an attorney. You may have medical bills, lost wages, and property damages, and an attorney can help you recover compensation to cover all these different losses. 

Many injured accident victims avoid legal assistance, fearing that it will be extremely costly. This could not be further from the truth!  In most accident-related cases, it costs nothing to sue, as it is based on a contingency fee arrangement. So you don’t need to worry that you don’t have expendable cash in hand. 

Curious?  Call us at 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get connected to an attorney for a free consultation today. For now, let’s explore some of the basics of hiring a car accident attorney. 

What is the Cost to Hire a Car Accident Attorney After a Crash?

Hiring an attorney for your motor vehicle accident claim does not cost anything up front. First, most personal injury, or accident, law firms offer free consultations to get started. Using this, you can get a fresh, professional perspective on your case. And, know how to best move forward. 

Secondly, in personal injury disputes, attorneys offer “contingency-based” arrangements. This creates a win-win situation for both the injured individual, as well as the attorney. 

What is a Contingency Arrangement?

A contingency basis, or contingency fee arrangement, means that the lawyer gets paid when the job is done, and the client is paid for their pain, suffering, and damages. The American Bar Association defines a contingency fee as, “The lawyer agrees to accept a fixed percentage (often one third) of the recovery, which is the amount finally paid to the client.” 

Put simply: the attorney gets paid only when the client secures compensation. If the client doesn’t get paid, the attorney doesn’t either. This creates a dynamic where the attorney is incentivized to do the best possible work, and do it efficiently. The more that you, as the injured victim, get through compensation, the more that the attorney gets paid, as they get paid a percentage cut of your total compensation.

How Does a Contingency Arrangement Work? 

The client and attorney agree to the “percentage of the outcome” the attorney will receive once they earn an award for their client. They also agree as to how legal expenses will be handled during litigation. Expenses including:

  • court filing charges
  • travel costs
  • and witness fees

Your attorney will generally pay for these extra expenses, though you’ll want to double-check the client-attorney agreement to ensure that this is the case. You can discuss the details more during the initial consultation.

What Contingency Fee Percentage Should I Expect?

In most personal injury cases, contingency fee percentages hover around 33%. Many agreements are based on a sliding scale percentage, however. The percentage will, therefore, shift depending on:

  • The expected payout
  • How long it takes to resolve the claim
  • And the phase of litigation

For example, if the attorney takes a personal injury case, and is easily able to obtain a satisfactory settlement with insurance adjusters in a brief time, they may only charge 25%. If an attorney needs to litigate and the case begins to take on more time and effort, the percentage due will slide up and move to 33%.  

It is important to note that minimum and maximum contingency fees may vary depending on:

  • State laws in which the client lives
  • Where the attorney practices
  • Extent of the damages
  • Expected recovery amount
  • Complexity of the incident
  • Experience of the attorney

Benefits to Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer Based on a Contingency Plan

Many injury victims struggle with stress and anxiety after an accident. They may have lots of bills to pay that they simply don’t have the money to cover, and post injury lifestyle changes can be difficult to adapt to as well. 

A reliable, experienced attorney can alleviate the stress of dealing with insurance companies and bill collectors. Attorneys have the resources to help you obtain the care you need for your injuries, and even the repair work needed for your vehicle.  

Hiring based on contingency means there will be no immediate out of pocket legal costs and you will not be billed unless the attorney wins the case. A contingency plan motivates the attorney to do their best, because if they do not do their job, they will not get paid. The risk to you is low, but the potential payout can be high.

Seek Assistance After a Car Crash With a Car Accident Attorney

Did you suffer injuries in a car crash? An experienced car accident attorney can help you recover compensation for your injuries. Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to find a car accident attorney in your areaConsultation is free and confidential, so don’t delay!

Four Insurance Company Tricks that Get Car Accident Victims to Settle for Less | Auto Accident Attorneys

Every state in the U.S. requires drivers to provide evidence of financial responsibility before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. Most of the time, this proof of financial responsibility means proof of insurance coverage in the minimum amounts required by law. State lawmakers require this so that if an accident occurs and an at-fault driver injures or kills someone or damages their property, the victim can receive money for their accident-related expenses. It sounds relatively simple and straightforward, as it should be.  

Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get in touch with an experienced auto accident attorney who can help you secure compensation and battle insurance companies.

Tricks Insurance Companies Use

However, insurance companies like to complicate the matter. Why? Because while the very nature of their business is fairly paying car accident claims, doing so doesn’t serve their financial goals.

How Do Insurance Companies Make Money?

Just like any other business, they exist to make money. The more they spend on car accident claims, the less they have in their bank accounts. One of their solutions to this dilemma is to use tricks and tactics that entice car accident victims to settle for less than their claim is worth.  

4 Most Common Tactics Insurance Companies Use

Anyone filing a car insurance claim after an accident, no matter how big or small, should be aware of these unfair and often unethical practices. They should also have an experienced car accident lawyer on their side who can help identify and eliminate these tactics. So how do insurance companies try to trick you? Here are four of their most common tactics:

  1. Swoop and Settle
  2. Recorded Statement
  3. Denying Your Claim
  4. Asking for Additional and Unrelated Medical Records

The Swoop and Settle

Do insurance companies want to settle quickly? Of course, they do, but not for the same reasons you do. You want to settle quickly to pay your bills, make up for lost wages, and move on with your life. They want to settle quickly so that car accident victims don’t have the chance to meet with an auto accident lawyer to learn what their case is really worth or before they have time to realize the full extent of their injuries.  

They want to swoop in, sometimes within days of filing your claim, make you a quick offer, and have you accept. This way, you don’t know that the offer they presented you with was extremely low compared to what you could receive with a lawyer on your side. Once you accept and sign their offer, there’s usually no going back. Don’t accept any settlement offer from the insurance adjuster without speaking to a seasoned car accident attorney. It’s also important to note that you can counter-offer their settlement, but this is usually also best done with an attorney who knows the strengths and weaknesses of your claim.  

The Recorded Statement

When the insurance adjuster calls to speak with you about the accident, they will typically ask your permission to record your statement and answers to their questions. They may make it seem like it’s a requirement or that they can’t process your claim without doing so. However, this isn’t true. You don’t have to agree to or provide a recorded statement. Instead, tell them you are going to discuss your case with an auto accident lawyer first.  

By asking for a recorded statement, they can use what you say against you. They can also ask you leading questions, such as: 

  • “You didn’t see the car coming because you were looking down at your cell phone, right?” 
  • “You were driving home after a long night shift, right?” 

Or they may even just twist what you say. It’s best to hire an auto accident attorney who will speak to the insurance adjuster on your behalf. 

Delaying Your Claim

Another common car insurance company tactic is to simply delay your claim. You file your claim as soon as possible after the accident, and then it seems like nothing is happening. You call to check on the status of your claim, and the adjuster gives you the runaround or other excuses. It’s their hope that you get tired of waiting for them to process your claim, forget about it, and move on or simply agree to settle for less.

What To Do If the Insurance Company Is Stalling

When you have legal representation, the insurance company knows they can’t get away with these delays. Your attorney will ensure that there are no unnecessary delays. 

Asking for Additional and Unrelated Medical Records

The insurance company has a right to see the medical bills and records for which you are asking reimbursement or compensation. They don’t automatically have the right to see your medical records for any dates preceding the car accident. If they get ahold of such information, they could try to use it against you. So, for example, if you sent them medical records from an old back injury, they might try to say your pain and symptoms now can’t be from the car accident you just experienced but rather because of your old back injury. They will use this trick to try to deny or decrease the value of your claim.  

The insurance adjuster may also ask for additional records or information they already have just to delay your claim further.

In a Car Accident? Don’t Fall for Insurance Company Tricks, Hire an Experienced Attorney Instead

Anytime an insurance company can poke holes in your case and twist your words, they will do so.  It benefits them to weaken your claim and get you to settle for less, or even to reject it outright.  

With the help of a qualified motor vehicle accident attorney, you can avoid falling for insurance company tricks.  Attorneys are committed to helping you obtain the monetary compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.  

Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get in touch with an experienced auto accident attorney who can help you secure compensation and battle the insurers.  Consultation is free and confidential, so there’s no barrier to getting started!

Hit by a Skateboarder? You Can Sue | Accident Lawyer

Skateboarder culture has grown and changed many times since its inception, from the iconic 1970s “dude” culture to the “extreme sports” culture of the 1990s. Despite these many changes, skateboarding has always been plagued by risk of serious injury, and in some cases, even death. This isn’t limited to the person skateboarding, it’s possible to seriously hurt others, too. Unfortunately, skateboarders have long embraced these experiences as a rite of passage. This dismissive approach to injury continues to impact skateboarding. For example, wearing a helmet is often discouraged, arguments to this day are made as to why those skateboarding should not wear a helmet! 

Skateboarder Accidents with Pedestrians

This carefree attitude towards safety can put pedestrians at risk. It should come as no surprise that in 2022, we can expect hundreds of thousands of skateboarding-related injuries in the United States alone. If you’ve been injured by a someone on a skateboard, scooter, or electric scooter, we encourage you to speak to a personal injury attorney. They can help you understand your rights and potential next steps. You may be entitled to compensation, so don’t resign yourself to your circumstances. Explore your legal options. 

Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to schedule a free consultation with a personal injury attorney in your area.

A Pedestrian In A Skateboarding Accident 

Imagine that you’re walking down the street, heading to the local corner store for some groceries.  Suddenly, a skateboarder speeds by. In attempting a trick, he recklessly collides with you. The collision causes you to suffer injuries; naturally, you’re upset. After all, shouldn’t the person on the skateboard be riding on the street, and not on a crowded sidewalk designed for pedestrians? 

You may be wondering: Can I sue the skateboarder who hit me? 

Likely yes. But, developing a winning pedestrian injury lawsuit takes more than just a legitimate claim.  To succeed in obtaining compensation, you’ll have to show that the other person was liable and actually caused your injuries. And, you’ll also have to show that you did suffer the injuries that you claim. Lawsuits can be complicated, so you’ll want a seasoned personal injury lawyer by your side throughout these proceedings. 

How Negligence Works 

Most skateboarding accident claims involve “negligence.”  Specifically, the negligence of the skateboarder who hit you. But what does this entail? 

Negligence as a concept is a combination of four elements: duty, breach, causation, and damages. These are put together as follows: if a person violates or breaches their duty towards you and causes injury and damages as a result, then they are liable to you as the victim. This liability leads to financial compensation.

In the skateboarding context, a skateboarder owes a duty of care to others, including pedestrians. They must use their skateboard in such a way that it minimizes the risk of injury to others. If the skateboarder violates this duty, perhaps by recklessly weaving in and out of pedestrian traffic, and as a result collides with you and causes injury, then you could sue them for negligence. 

Proving negligence isn’t always easy. That’s where a skilled and experienced personal injury attorney comes in. They will review your situation and determine whether you have a viable case. After doing so, they’ll come up with the best “strategic plan” for securing compensation from the skateboarder who harmed you.

What To Do If You’re Hit By A Skateboarder 

If you’re injured in a collision with a skateboarder, make sure to secure your health and safety first.  There’s a time and a place for handling legal matters. If you have an actual medical emergency, then do not delay, make your way over to a hospital as soon as possible and get the medical care you need to recover. That being said, if your injuries are not severe and do not require immediate medical attention, then there are important steps you can take to strengthen your impending lawsuit

While at the accident scene, gather as much contact information as you can. Don’t just get the name and contact information of the skateboarder, speak to eyewitnesses and get their information. These witnesses will corroborate your side of the story, increasing the likelihood that you win your case. 

Finally, take photos of both the accident scene and your own injuries. You should also document your injuries over time, taking pictures everyday to show the development of the injury. These photos, along with test results and documentation from your doctor about your condition, will aid your case. 

Find a Personal Injury Lawyer to Help 

Skateboarding injuries happen quite frequently, but the “casual” nature of skateboarding may convince injured persons to simply move on. The truth is, if a skateboarder crashes into you and you suffer injuries, it’s likely that you can sue for damages. To improve your chances of winning the case (and to maximize the compensation you receive), you’ll want to work with a skilled personal injury lawyer who has experience handling skateboarding accident disputes. Contact 1-800-THE-LAW2 today for a free and confidential consultation.

Injured in a Single Vehicle Accident? You Might Be Entitled to Damages

Across the United States, single-vehicle accidents are common. However, when people envision a typical car crash, they often think it involves two vehicles. As a result, one car accident where no one admits fault or no one else is involved is not usually perceived as a legal claim. After all, if the driver who caused harm, the defendant, and the driver who receives the injury, the plaintiff, are not both present during the accident, is it even a legal claim?

What Are the Odds of Having a Single Car Accident?

Single vehicle collisions occur with surprising frequency, and they do not always involve two vehicles. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), in the United States, 9,973 deaths linked to single vehicle collisions occurred in 2019. As such, it is fair to say that single vehicle collisions are a problem area for major and minor car accidents that deserve more attention.

If you have an injury as the result of a single vehicle accident, you may find your case strategy requires a more skillful touch. For free lawyer consultation over the phone, call 1-800-THE-LAW2 and connect to an experienced car accident attorney near you in our network.

Curious about single vehicle collisions? Check out our short video on the subject below, or keep reading!

WATCH THE LATEST VIDEO SHORT FROM 1-800-THE-LAW2: Single Vehicle Accident video on Youtube

https://youtu.be/py9ACmgDQrQ
1800THELAW2 ON YOUTUBE: WATCH SINGLE VEHICLE ACCIDENT VIDEO

When Is a Driver Liable for a Single Vehicle Accident?

In a single-vehicle collision scenario, it’s not always obvious whether someone can be legally liable for injuries. This stands in stark contrast to car accident scenarios where liability is obvious, such as a drunk driver accident. Whereas in DUI cases, there is clearly a driver in the wrong. However, in a single vehicle crash, that is not always the case.

Liability is Not Obvious in a Single Vehicle Accident

To determine liability, a comprehensive evaluation of evidence is necessary. In the early stages of any legal claim, assistance of an experienced car accident attorney is invaluable. As the injured person, you might not realize that you have an actionable claim for damages under the law. An attorney can determine who is potentially liable, and how much they potentially owe you. Naturally, this has an impact on your legal claims for a single car accident. No insurance? If you lack proper insurance coverage, it’s much more critical to work with an attorney, as you won’t have any benefits to fall back on if you don’t sue and recover damages.

What Does It Mean to be in a Single Car Crash?

In a single vehicle crash, there is no driver who collided with your vehicle. Thus, you’ll have to explore other avenues for damages recovery and legal compensation.

Who Can You Sue in a Single Vehicle Collision?

Many victims do not realize that there are many other parties who are potentially liable for their injuries. A few examples are:

What are the Two Collisions that Happen in a Crash?

Here are two examples of one car accident cases where no one admits fault, yet another party is potentially responsible. They are:

Tree Accident Example

For the first example, suppose you have an injury that resulted from a fallen tree while driving. Here’s what happened. The tree was located on City property, and it was poorly maintained. The City made no proper inspections, and thereby allowed the tree to become structurally damaged. As a result of improper maintenance, it fell on a nearby car. Specifically, the tree accident involved your car, the tree, and no other vehicle. If this happened to you, you could sue the City and recover compensation for the one car accident, even though it involved no one else.

DUI Crash Example

In the second example, imagine your injury was a single vehicle collision that resulted from a DUI crash. This is what happened. A drunk driver swerved into your lane, and you suddenly switched lanes to avoid a car reck. In turn, you lost control and crashed your vehicle. Under these circumstances, you can sue the drunk driver despite the fact that they never actually touched your vehicle.

Leaving The Scene Of An Accident

Here’s an important single care collision advice:

If you’ve been in a single vehicle collision, avoid leaving the scene until you can do everything needed to preserve your legal claims. This may involve recording pictures and video evidence of the car crash scene, calling an attorney to help you physically evaluate the situation, and speaking to nearby witnesses to get their contact information. Many times, witnesses are a useful resource to prove that your version of events is correct.

Since environmental hazards and road defects cause many single-vehicle accidents, it is important to record that information in detail. When possible, collect video evidence, take pictures, and write down every detail you observe and remember from the car crash.

Also, be sure to secure medical assistance as soon as possible. Failure to seek timely medical assistance can undermine your legal claims. So, if you are seriously injured, do not delay. Get the medical attention you need.

Contact 1-800-THE-LAW2 For Free Lawyer Consultation Over the Phone

If you had an injury as a result of a single vehicle accident, please call us today. In order to preserve your legal claim, it is important to contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible. Our network of highly skilled auto accident attorneys provide free lawyer consultation over the phone. After investigating the evidence, your lawyer will develop a case strategy that may potentially lead to recovery of damages. Consultations over the phone are confidential.

Call us now to get connected to an experienced car accident attorney in 10 minutes or less. Legal consultation is free and confidential. If you decide to not move forward with the case, there is no commitment.

Distracted Driving Awareness Month

April is distracted driving awareness month, so we feel it’s important to take a moment to explore some basic issues, and to bring the facts to light.

Distracted driving is an issue that doesn’t get enough attention, even though it contributes to so many accidents. Given the widespread use of mobile phones over the last 20 years, car accidents are becoming more common due to inattentive or distracted drivers.

If you are a driver, passenger or pedestrian, you should be aware of the risks posed by distracted drivers, how to avoid them, and what you can do legally if you are injured.

How to Win Your Case

In auto accident cases, you are entitled to damages under certain circumstances. You’ll have to prove that the defendant not only hurt you, but also that he was negligent, reckless, or intentional.

Distracted driving is “negligent” or “reckless” conduct. In other words, the driver who caused your injuries didn’t mean to cause injuries, but he behaved recklessly under the circumstances. Their behavior increased the likelihood that someone would get hurt, and that’s exactly what happened.

For more information on: What is the Difference in Negligent vs. Reckless Driving?

To win a distracted driving case, you have to prove that the driver was distracted while he was driving, and that his behavior wasn’t justified under the circumstances.

Confused? Don’t worry, let’s use a brief example to clarify. 

When It Is Not Considered Distracted Driving  

Let’s say you’re injured in an auto accident. You believe the defendant was distracted while driving, which led to the collision (they weren’t paying attention to the road).

As you investigate the case further, you discover that the defendant-driver had their attention diverted because their passenger had a seizure. The seizure caused the passenger’s arms and hands to enter the driver’s field of view, and even interfere with their use of the steering wheel. The driver had to take a moment to deal with the situation, which distracted them from the road.

In these circumstances, the driver’s distraction would be justified. It would not be unreasonable. It might be a bit harder to win the case, or the damage recovery might be reduced.

On the other hand, suppose the driver was distracted because he was texting friends while driving. This behavior is unreasonable and unjustified, and qualifies as negligence or recklessness under the law, so you might be entitled to damages.

Statistics of Distracted Driving Infographic 

Here at 1-800-THE-LAW2, we have created an infographic to help the public better understand some important facts and statistics of distracted driving. Enjoy!

Click Here to Download

April is national distracted driving awareness month. Distracted Driving Infographic by 1800thelaw2.com

Examples of Distracted Driving 

Distracted driving can take on many forms, including: 

  • Texting while driving 
  • Cell phone use while driving 
  • Talking to other passengers while driving 
  • Inattentiveness (i.e., looking at the sidewalk instead of the road ahead) 
  • And more 

For example, while most people associate cell phone use with distracted driving, a driver can be drawn into conversation with his friend in the passenger seat. This conversation could distract the driver, causing them to make a mistake that leads to an accident.

Suppose the passenger contributed to the accident by distracting the driver. In that case, it may be possible to sue the passenger for damages. For a strategic approach, this makes it easier to secure the maximum possible compensation.

Contact 1-800-THE-LAW2 for a Free Consultation 

If you’ve been in a car accident because of a distracted driver, you may be entitled to significant damages. When pursuing your claim, you’ll want to work with a qualified attorney who can help you from start-to-finish.

Here at 1-800-THE-LAW2, our attorneys are standing by to help you. We have a network of lawyers who are experienced in handling distracted driving cases.

Call us at 1-800-THE-LAW2 for a free and confidential consultation. We’ll connect you to an experienced attorney in 10 minutes or less. 

Can You Recover Damages If You Were Not Wearing A Seatbelt?

If you’ve been injured in a car accident (due to the fault of another driver), but you weren’t wearing a seatbelt, then you may be wondering if you’re legally entitled to sue and recover damages. After all, failing to wear your seatbelt could have contributed significantly to your own injuries, and could be considered negligent behavior.

Whether you’re entitled to damages — and to what degree — depends in large part on the rules of the state in which your case will be litigated. It also depends on the specific facts and circumstances of your accident.

Except for a few states, however, you should be able to sue and recover damages in many no-seatbelt cases. As these cases can be a challenge to litigate, it’s important that you work with an experienced car accident attorney who understands how to navigate the strategic roadblocks. Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get connected to a skilled attorney in our network today for a free legal consultation.

For now, let’s explore how fault works in accidents where both sides engaged in negligent behavior.

Comparative Fault and Contributory Fault Basics

States implement one of three fault doctrines when evaluating how to allocate fault after a car accident. So, if you were not wearing a seatbelt at the time of your accident, one of the following may apply:

Contributory Fault

Under the contributory fault doctrine, if you — the plaintiff — are even 1 percent at-fault for your own injuries, then you are prohibited from suing and recovering damages in a car accident. For example, if you failed to wear a seatbelt, and that failure contributed to your injuries, then the court would preclude you from obtaining any sort of compensation through a lawsuit.

As the contributory fault doctrine is extremely strict and anti-plaintiff, you’ll want to work closely with an attorney to ensure that you do not run afoul of the rule. There may be ways in which you can strategically develop the case (and present the facts) that show you are not responsible for your own injuries, even if you engaged in negligent activity at the time of the accident.

Pure Comparative Fault

Under the pure comparative fault doctrine, you can be 99 percent at-fault for your own injuries and still recover damages. The law would not prevent you from suing and obtaining compensation from the defendant, no matter how fault is allocated. However, it’s important to note that while you can sue and recover damages, those damages will be proportionally reduced by your contribution of fault.

How does this work?

Suppose that you are injured in a car accident in which you were not wearing a seatbelt. The court determines that you were 30 percent at-fault, due to your failure to wear a seatbelt. The total damages is roughly $100,000. You would be entitled to recover 70 percent of the total damages, or $70,000.

As such, even in pure comparative fault states, defendants have much to gain from showing that you were also at-fault — by doing so, they can reduce their damages’ liability to some degree.

Modified Comparative Fault

Under the modified comparative fault doctrine, you can sue and recover damages in a lawsuit against the defendant, but only if you were less than 50 percent at-fault. If you are 50 percent (or more) at-fault, then you will be prohibited from recovering damages entirely.

The modified comparative fault doctrine is thus a mix of pure comparative fault and contributory fault.

For example, suppose that you are injured in a car accident and were not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident. The court finds that you were 60 percent at-fault, as if you had been wearing your seatbelt, you would not have sustained any significant injuries. Under modified comparative fault, you would not be entitled to recover any damages through a lawsuit. If the court found that you were 40 percent at-fault, however, then you would be entitled to recover damages.

Proving that the Defendant “Caused” the Injury

Whatever the particular “doctrine” of fault that applies in your state, you can reduce how much fault the court allocates to you by showing that your negligent acts were not actually connected to the injuries — and that it was the defendant’s negligent acts that caused your injuries.

This can be a bit difficult to understand, so let’s use a brief example for clarity.

Suppose that you are injured in a car accident, and you weren’t wearing your seatbelt at the time of the collision. The defendant-driver sideswiped you, causing you to sustain multiple fracture injuries on your left side.

Now, the defendant knows that you were not wearing your seatbelt, and they are attempting to paint that you as highly negligent. They want to prove that your failure to wear a seatbelt is what led to severe injury. In truth, however, your failure to wear a seatbelt — though negligent and somewhat irresponsible — is not linked to the injuries you sustained. It is not as though you were flung forward through your window.

Here, the same sideswipe injuries would have occurred had you been wearing your seatbelt. As such, your negligence in failing to wear a seatbelt did not actually contribute to your injuries (and thus, fault cannot be allocated to you in this context).

Contact A Car Accident Attorney In Your Area For A Free Consultation

Here at 1-800-THE-LAW2, we operate a large network of experienced car accident attorneys who are standing by to provide assistance, whether or not you were wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident.

Call us to get connected to a skilled accident lawyer in just 10 minutes or less. Consultation is free and confidential, so there’s no downside to contacting us to schedule an initial consultation.

We look forward to speaking with you.

What NOT to Say After a Car Accident

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, then the law may give you a right of action to sue and recover damages to cover your losses. Oftentimes, however, injured plaintiffs don’t fully understand how their legal claims could be impacted by the statements they make following an accident.

Even basic, amicable conversation (whether with an insurance adjuster, the opposing attorney, or the driver who caused the accident) can lead to disclosures that undermine your claims and prevent you from securing the compensation you deserve.

Of course, you should be careful about the statements that you make, but first-time plaintiffs may not realize what sort of statements qualify as “risky.” As such, it’s important to get in touch with an experienced car accident lawyer who will take over your case and communicate on your behalf. This will prevent any potentially damaging disclosures. Contact 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get connected to a lawyer today for free legal advice.

For now, however, let’s briefly explore some basic issues tied to verbal disclosures.

Disclosures Can Undermine Your Case

Disclosures can undermine your case in a number of different ways:

a) Disclosures that can be interpreted as an “admission of fault” can impact the allocation of fault and liability in the dispute; and
b) Disclosures that lead to an inconsistent interpretation of the facts (surrounding the accident) can weaken the proof of liability, or reduce the potential damages amount available to be claimed.

This may strike some readers as indecipherable “legalese,” so let’s explore a simple example for clarity.

Example

Suppose that you are injured in a car accident. Before you head to the hospital for diagnostic work and treatment for your injuries, you’re able to spend some time at the scene of the accident, speaking with the driver who caused the accident by rear-ending you. In your conversation with them, you apologize for having stepped on the brakes too suddenly, as you thought you saw something on the road — this may have contributed to the rear-end accident itself.

Though it may seem like an unproblematic apology, the truth is that your statements could be used in court to undermine your claims. After all, if you’re arguing that the defendant was liable for your injuries, then they could challenge that by arguing that you actually caused the accident by breaking suddenly, and at an inappropriate time.

Accidents are complicated. Instead of evaluating the accident yourself and speaking about it with others, it’s best to remain quiet about what you “think” happened and consult an attorney first.

Some Evidence Is Inadmissible In Court

If you did happen to accidentally make some statements at the scene of the accident, it’s worth noting that some of them will not be allowed into evidence. This will be significantly to your benefit.

Generally speaking, “hearsay” statements are inadmissible in court. Hearsay statements are those introduced to prove the matter at-hand.

So, for example, if the defendant is trying to prove that you were distracted from the road at the time of the accident and is trying to introduce evidence that you said you were in a heated conversation with your passenger (when they talked to you at the scene of the accident), then that could potentially be inadmissible. It likely qualifies as hearsay — a statement that is only meant to prove the fact.

However, it’s worth noting that there are a number of exceptions to the hearsay rule. Examples include:

A) If the statement was an “excited utterance” that you spontaneously made at the spur of the moment, that can be admitted into evidence;
B) If the statement was clearly against your own interest (i.e., a statement about how you were speeding);
C) If the statement was one that reflected a “present sense impression” of the situation at-hand;
D) And more.

Hearsay and its exceptions can be quite complex and challenging to argue. As such, we encourage you to get in touch with an experienced attorney who understands how to navigate the evidentiary record and ensure that problematic statements are not admitted into evidence.

For A Free Consultation, Contact An Experienced Car Accident Lawyer Near You.

If you’ve been in a car accident, then there are a number of people (and entities) that you’ll be interacting with as you explore your recovery options. These interactions could lead to disclosures that undermine your damages claims, and prevent you from securing the maximum possible compensation. As such, it’s critical that you work with an attorney at an early stage in your case.

Your attorney will act as a “middleman,” ensuring that you can avoid the frustration and hassle of these legal interactions, while also avoiding potentially damaging disclosures.

Here at 1-800-THE-LAW2, our staff is standing by and ready to accept your calls. Contact us to get connected to an experienced car accident lawyer near you.

Get free legal advice now!

How to Write a Victim Impact Statement for a Car Accident | Car Accidents Attorney

Questions and topics this article can help to answer: What is a victim impact statement? | How to write a victim impact statement | Do’s and don’ts of writing a victim impact statement for a car accident | Example of a victim impact statement | Why write a victim impact statement?

When you’re the victim of a car accident, it can have a devastating impact on your life. People experience painful injuries, lifelong physical injuries, trauma, PTSD, anxiety, stress, and more. Additionally, a victim could have lost a friend or loved one who was in the accident with them.

If you’re the victim of a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you may want to pursue a lawsuit against the other party. One factor that can significantly impact your case is a victim impact statement. Keep reading for a full overview of what a victim impact statement for a car accident is, how to write one, some popular tips, and an example statement. Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get connected to experienced car accident attorneys near you today.

What is a Victim Impact Statement?

A victim impact statement is a personally written account of how the car accident affected you. Many times, a serious car accident can have long-standing consequences. It’s an opportunity for a victim to explain the full extent the car accident may have had. For example, a police report may mention that the victim had a broken leg. But, what might not be mentioned is the other consequences, like:

  • Time off of work
  • Hospital bills
  • Cost and time of physiotherapy appointments
  • Canceled vacations or plans
  • Stress, anxiety, or depression when it comes to driving
  • The impact of the injuries and accident on friends and family

Your victim statement is a comprehensive overview of how the individual’s life has changed due to the car accident.

How to Write a Victim Impact Statement

A victim impact statement for a car accident doesn’t need to focus on the details of the accident itself. You shouldn’t feel that this is the time to explain what happened and who is at fault. That will be covered in the legal proceedings. Instead, the victim impact statement should discuss the physical, mental, emotional, and financial impacts you’ve experienced.

What Do You Say in an Impact Statement?

Wrapping up the whole experience in a victim personal statement can feel overwhelming. Here are some tips to walk you through the process of what it should include:

  1. Start with the emotional impact
  2. Transition into your physical injuries and disabilities
  3. Emphasize the financial consequences

Start With the Emotional Impact

You can discuss how you felt that day and how you feel now. You were probably scared and shocked on the day and might still feel anger and fear today. Describe these emotions in as much detail as you can, so the jury can understand just how emotionally traumatizing the car accident was.

Transition Into Your Physical Injuries and Disabilities

After covering the emotions, you can transition into your physical injuries and disabilities. You’ll want to cover how much these injuries hurt, how long and challenging recovery has been, if recovery made you take time off work, time lost with family, friends, hobbies, and other consequences. You may want to wrap this up in a personal story. Some common examples are having to cancel a booked and paid vacation because you were recovering. Or, having to become a burden and reliant on your family members during recovery, which impacted them as much as you. You need to go over these details, so the jury understands the full consequences of your injuries.

Emphasize the Financial Consequences

Lastly, you’ll want to emphasize the financial consequences. This will help the jury decide the amount of accident compensation you and your family may deserve. You can cover how much this accident cost you in terms of:

  • Healthcare and recovery costs
  • Wages lost at work
  • And more

How Do You Write a Good Impact Statement?

The Do’s & Don’ts Of Writing A Victim Impact Statement for a Car Accident

While writing your victim statement, try to keep these common do’s and dont’s in mind:

  • Do: Write in “I feel” and “I believe” statements rather than definitive “The defendant did…” statements. You should only include what you believe to be true, as the defendant can question the legitimacy of your statements.
  • Don’t: Use this as an opportunity to go over the details of the accident and lay blame on the defendant.
  • Do: Express your emotions clearly, add details, and paint a picture of what you’ve been through.
  • Don’t: Mention the type of punishment you think or want the defendant to receive.
  • Do: Have someone review your statement for proper spelling and grammar.
  • Don’t: Swear in your statement; it can cause the jury to see you in a negative light.
  • Do: Staple and include related paperwork that can help verify your statements, such as receipts.

Example of A Victim Impact Statement

Your Honor,

On August 25, 2021, at the intersection of Fir Street and 96th Avenue in San Diego, California, I was in a car accident with Mr. Smith. The accident happened at approximately 2:00 in the afternoon. My car was totaled as a result of the accident and I walked away with a broken arm.

That day, I had left work for a brief period to go to a routine doctor’s appointment. It was easily the most shocking and traumatizing experience of my life having a car ram into the side of my driver’s door. I couldn’t get out of the car and I sat there shocked with my arm pinned under the wheel. The paramedics arrived on the scene and were able to pull me out. I remember screaming in pain like I have never screamed before. I was taken to the hospital and informed I had broken my arm.

It took nine weeks for me to fix my broken arm. I had to cancel a vacation I had booked for Mexico. I also had to move into my parent’s home, so my mom could take care of me. I became a burden to those I love most, needing help eating, changing my clothes, showering, and more. I couldn’t even go to the grocery store and take my debit card out of my wallet to pay for my groceries. I needed someone to come with me everywhere I went. I felt helpless, useless, and an annoyance to everyone.

During my recovery, I had to take a leave of absence from work, losing nine weeks of wages. The hospital bills alone were tremendous, but I have also been in six months of physiotherapy. Not only are those appointments expensive, but they take up my time every week.

Today, I still don’t have full use of my arm. There’s a dull pain that shoots down my arm constantly. More importantly, I haven’t driven a car since the accident. I still have trouble getting into a car. I experience flashbacks and sometimes have panic attacks.

This accident has shattered me in every single way – financially, mentally, physically, and emotionally. I don’t know when I will be the same again, but it’s quite possible I’ve been changed forever. I ask the court to consider the full impact this accident has had on my life when deciding on a settlement. The jury needs to understand that I am not who I used to be and it’s been hard to reconcile that for myself, my family, and my friends.

Thank you for listening to me today.

Why Write A Victim Impact Statement?

One benefit of a victim personal impact letter is that writing it and reading it aloud can feel very therapeutic. It allows the victim to feel heard, and to tell their side of the story to the person who caused the accident, or to the court.

What Is the Purpose of an Impact Statement for Court?

The point of the victim impact statement is for the individual to present a more complete picture of how the car accident changed their lives, either for the short term or the long term. A victim impact statement adds a personal touch to your auto accident lawsuit. It’s an opportunity to speak to the jury, so you can get the compensation you deserve.

Find an Accident Lawyer Near You Today

If you’ve been in a car accident, consider getting legal representation so you and your family can get the maximum compensation for your injuries. Our experienced car accident lawyers have helped thousands of injured drivers get their rightful compensation. We’ll help you in every step of the process, including your victim impact statement for your car accident. Contact us today for a free consultation.

How to Determine Fault in a Car Accident | Car Accident Lawyers

Fault or liability in a car accident is dependent on determining whose carelessness or negligence is to blame for the accident.

After an auto accident there are two defenses that need to be weighed. They determine the degree to which either driver is at fault for the crash, as well as how much monetary compensation each driver will provide to cover damages. The two defenses are:

  1. Comparative negligence
  2. Contributory negligence

Comparative Negligence

Essentially comparative negligence ascribes a percentage of the blame to both parties.

For example if Jane and John get into an accident, John may claim that Jane rear-ended him in a collision, and therefore owes him compensation for the damage to his vehicle.

Jane may counter with a comparative negligence defense, stating that John was illegally double-parked and his car should have never been in her lane, saddling him with some of the responsibility.

When the case reaches trial the jury may find that John sustained $10,000 worth of damages to his car, but was also 40% liable for the accident. Comparative negligence rules deem that Jane must pay John $6,000 in damages ($10,000 less the 40% he is responsible for).

Contributory Negligence

Contributory negligence which is followed in Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia and Washington D.C, states that if the defendant can prove any percentage of liability on the plaintiffs behalf, the plaintiff loses all rights to compensation.

Were you hurt in a car accident? If so, you may have a legitimate legal claim. We encourage you to speak with an auto accident lawyer as soon as possible. Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 to get connected to experienced, local accident attorneys near you.

Determining Fault in a Car Accident in the United States

Whether your state follows contributory negligence rules or comparative negligence rules, there are do’s and don’ts of fault accident laws. They are:

Stick to the Facts

Even if you really believe that it was your fault, keep it to yourself. Stick to the facts in your conversations with the other driver and the passengers.

Resist any desire to admit that the accident was your fault. If the other parties or witnesses try to provoke you into admitting wrongdoing, step away until the authorities arrive. The last thing you want is to be caught on video or tape admitting fault, apologizing, or recounting any wrongdoing on your part.

Stay Calm

Remain calm and respectful at the scene of the accident. Whether or not the accident was your fault, try to help any victims and respect the other party. Keeping the situation under control signals to witnesses and authorities that you are responsible and will ultimately help determine who is at fault more easily.

Gather Physical Evidence of the Accident

Gather evidence at the scene with your phone. Take pictures of the accident, as well as videos. Look for street signs or the layout of the roadways and document everything you can. This will help your insurance company, and your attorney, determine who is at fault.

Filing a Police Report

Police don’t always come to the site of car accidents. If your collision is big enough, an officer will probably have to make some sort of official report. Be sure to get the names of officers at the scene, the precinct number, and even their badge number. Ask them how to get access to a copy of the report when it is ready. The report will definitely be a factor in determining who is at fault by the insurance companies on all sides.

Insurance Companies and Investigations

Insurance companies will carry out their own investigations, but the more information you can provide, the better the chance of a favorable outcome. If dealing with insurance companies is too intimidating for you, consider hiring an attorney to represent you.

Determining Car Accident Fault by Location of Damage

The type of accident and the position of cars also give clues as to who may be at fault. For example, rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of accidents and the vehicle in the rear is usually at fault. This is because vehicles are supposed to leave enough room between their own car and the vehicle directly in front to navigate safely away from a dangerous situation. If the front car stops suddenly and the rear car still ends up hitting it, they probably weren’t driving safely.

Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer

If you’re worried about having to pay damages after an auto accident, a lawyer could help you sift through your case and identify the proper evidence to prove fault. Remember there are two types of negligence that you could claim, and an experienced car accident attorney can help you get the compensation you deserve. Call 1-800-THE-LAW2 for a free consultation with a qualified accident attorney near you.