Motor Vehicle Accidents and What You Need to Do
Motor vehicle accidents present a greater risk of fatalities according to what caused the accident and the volume of automobiles on the road at the time of the accident. Factors such as moving violations, exhausted driving, distracted driving, and intoxication lead to more and worse accidents. When reviewing personal injury laws, the victim discovers what they need to present an effective case in court.
The laws indicate how long the victims have to start a claim and what deadlines they face. With motor vehicle accidents, several factors can also affect the outcome of the case and determine if the victim receives any compensation for their losses.
Managing the Accident Itself
At any time that an auto accident happens, someone must contact emergency services and law enforcement. Law enforcement assesses the accident and determines what happened and who caused it. An accident report identifies everyone involved in the accident and what role they played in the accident.
Anyone who sustained injuries is taken to a local ER for a medical assessment, and inoperable vehicles are towed away from the scene. Victims of motor vehicle accidents contact Uvalle Law Firm today for information about starting an accident claim.
Collecting Evidence About the Accident
The victim needs evidence related to the accident, too. For example, eyewitness accounts paint a clear picture of the accident and what happened. When bringing a personal injury to court, the claimant needs to build an effective claim against the at-fault driver.
If possible, they should try to get traffic camera footage that shows the accident and what actions lead up to the accident. The attorney could file a motion to get the footage for a complete assessment. It is urgent that the attorney reviews any footage of the accident and
Explaining the Victim’s Injuries
Medical records are the most effective evidence to explain the victim’s injuries. Their records must show all the injuries they sustained during the accident, and some victims will need their doctor to testify and explain how the injuries affect the victim negatively.
Someone who sustained more severe injuries will need to present details to the court about how the injuries have changed their life. For example, if the person develops a disability, the condition could affect how well they support themselves for the rest of their lives. These factors must be presented to the court during the case.
Understanding Comparative Fault Rulings
Comparative fault rulings assign blame to the victim in an auto accident case, and they indicate that the victim committed a moving violation that contributed to the accident. The court assigns a percentage to each moving violation. If the percentage exceeds 50%, the victim’s case is dismissed. If it is less than 50%, the victim’s monetary award is decreased according to the assigned percentage.
When Extra Investigations are Needed
Some motor vehicle accidents such as 18-wheeler accidents require a more extensive investigation. With commercial drivers, the state must determine if they followed all federal regulations.
The Federal Motor Safety Administration releases new regulations each year, and currently, commercial drivers must participate in an 8-hour resting period after they drive 12 to 14 hours. A failure to complete the task could lead to exhausted driving that causes accidents.
The truck itself must be assessed, and the authorities define if there were any underlying causes for the accident such as mechanical failures, faulty parts, or if the driver had an uneven load. The investigation identifies all parties that played a role in causing the accident.
Did the At-Fault Driver Have Insurance?
At-fault drivers should file an insurance claim to cover the victim’s medical costs and repair expenses. If they do not have insurance, the at-fault driver faces significant penalties for failing to purchase and maintain the mandated vehicle liability coverage.
Another issue is having too little insurance, and the at-fault driver that doesn’t have enough coverage to pay for the victim’s expenses. If they don’t have enough insurance, the at-fault driver could face a lawsuit to collect compensation for the victim’s financial losses. An uninsured driver that was intoxicated faces far more serious penalties and will face criminal charges.
Getting Estimates for the Auto Repair Expenses
Auto repair expenses are included in the personal injury claim, and victims need at least three estimates for the repairs just like they would for an insurance claim. The court reviews the information about the repair costs and will choose from the estimates when deciding on a settlement.
If the automobile was a total loss, the victim receives the current market value for the automobile. The condition of the vehicle before the accident is another consideration when assigning value, too. The victim cannot claim any property damage that didn’t happen in the accident. Even with a total loss, they must identify what property damage was caused in the accident and not any existing damage that happened previously.
Did the Victim Lose Wages?
When recovering, some victims may lose wages because they cannot work. The severity of their injuries defines if the victim can return to work after the accident. They will need to get a statement from their employer that shows all wages they lost because of their injuries. If the person can perform light-duty activities, they should work their hours and avoid excessive wage losses.
The personal injury claim is not guaranteed, and some victims will walk away from the case without recovering any lost wages. If they are hospitalized, they can calculate their lost wages according to the total number of days they spend in the hospital.
Motor vehicle accidents generate serious and sometimes life-changing injuries, and the victims must follow strict steps to build a viable case against the defendant. The accident type determines if there are additional steps. For example, 18-wheeler accidents require extensive investigations to pinpoint the exact cause. In the claims, the victims need medical evidence and estimates for their auto repair expenses.
All economic losses must be represented in the claim, and the attorney reviews these losses according to personal injury laws. Personal injury laws allow victims to seek compensation through a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.