Suing After a Car Accident – What You Should Know
Millions of car accidents occur each week across the globe and the numbers continue to rise as our population continues to grow. Car accidents can be scary, frustrating, and life changing events. If you were injured in an auto accident that wasn’t your fault, you’re more than likely due money for your injuries, property damage, and expenses. In most cases, you should contact an experienced car accident lawyer to help sue the driver that hit you after your car accident.
If you’re thinking of suing after a car accident, there are some important steps you must take in order to maximize the value of your case:
First, you must obtain the at-fault drivers insurance carrier information. Immediately after your accident you should take pictures at the scene. This includes, his/her drivers license, insurance card, registration, and any photos of the scene you feel will be important in establishing your claim. After you get the other drivers insurance information, the next step is to open a claim with the at-fault drivers insurance carrier.
Making A Car Accident Claim
After you report the accident to the at-fault drivers insurance carrier, they will assign it to a claims adjuster who will make a decision with respect to liability, or who is at fault for the accident. Insurance companies like taking advantage of individuals without lawyers who they tend to see as “easy prey”. They’ll often throw lowball settlement offers in hopes people won’t know any better. This makes it very important to contact a car accident lawyer to discuss the option of suing after your car accident. If the insurance company denies liability or refuses to pay for your damages like medical expenses, property damage, pain and suffering, lost wages, etc., then you will need to file a lawsuit.
After your lawyer thinks your case is ready, he will present a settlement demand to the other parties insurance carrier. The demand will include a summary of facts from the accident, the injuries you have sustained, and the losses you have incurred as a direct result of the other persons negligence. Your lawyer will demand a specific amount of money based on what he/she believes your case is worth. Usually your attorney will ask for a lot more money than he believes the case will settle for. This is because your attorney will negotiate with the insurance company in attempts of settling your case for the highest possible value.
The car accident settlement demand generally depends on the circumstances surrounding your car accident, such as:
- Who was at fault?
- Were you injured? If so, how severely? Is ongoing treatment needed?
- Did you miss work? How much money do you make?
- How much damage was done to your car and other property?
- Is your quality of life negatively affected by your injuries?
How Long After a Car Accident Can You Sue?
The statute of limitations for suing after a car accident is different from state to state, but generally ranges from 1-4 years. For more information on how long you have to get your auto accident lawsuit process started, take a look at our state directory.
If you’re thinking about filing a car accident lawsuit, the best thing to do is speak to a local attorney familiar with your state’s car accident laws. They can advise you on the specifics of your case and give you a good idea what your case may be worth. To book your free case evaluation, simply fill out the form on the top right side of the page, or call our 24 hour legal helpline at 877-810-4067.