Vehicle Accidents


Drivers injured in a car accident may be able to receive compensation for their injuries, including payments for lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering. Whether or not you will receive compensation, however, can depend on who was at fault for the accident, state laws, and what type of car insurance protection you have purchased.

Types of car insurance


Car insurance coverage and laws vary by state, but all states require drivers to purchase minimum car insurance protection. If you have been injured in a vehicular accident the first step is to contact you insurance company and find out what type of coverage you have purchased. Common car insurance options include bodily injury coverage, personal injury protection (PIP), medical coverage, and uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage.

How much compensation will I receive for my car accident?


The amount of compensation you will receive after a car accident will depend on state laws, insurance coverage, and your degree of fault. For instance, certain states (no-fault states) have passed laws which require each driver’s insurance company to pay for injuries to their covered driver, regardless of who was at fault. Other states (at fault states) require the at fault driver’s insurance company to pay for the injury and expenses for the driver who was not at fault.

If you are responsible for your own accident and decide to file a personal injury claim, some states have laws which will reduce or eliminate your right to compensation entirely. For example, contributory states may eliminate your right to receive compensation if you contributed to an accident in any way. Pure comparative negligent states, however, will determine your contribution level and will lower your payments accordingly.

Steps to take after a car accident


If you have been involved in a car accident there are certain steps you should immediately take immediately following the car accident:

  1. Get immediate medical attention and request all appropriate tests.
  2. Contact the police and get a copy of the police report.
  3. Collect photographs, witness statements, witness information, and information about your lost wages.
  4. Contact your insurance company and get information about your insurance policy.
  5. Take notes detailing the car accident.
  6. Return to the scene of the accident and take pictures.
  7. Preserve all physical evidence.
  8. Document all of your injuries with photographs and medical statements from your medical doctors.

Can I file an injury claim for a vehicle accident?


Injured drivers may be able to recover compensation for their losses in a variety of ways. For example, if you live in a no-fault state you will file a claim with your own insurance company. If you live in an at fault state and you were not responsible for the accident, you can file a claim against the at fault driver’s insurance company.

Whether or not you have the right to file a car accident injury claim, however, will depend on the laws of your state. At fault states allow drivers to file an injury claim against the at fault driver, assuming the statute of limitations has not expired. No-fault states, however, only allow car accident injury claims to be filed if certain monetary or injury thresholds are met (state laws vary).

How much is my car accident claim worth?


In some cases, if the court determines the at fault driver was careless or acted with reckless abandon, you may also be able to receive punitive damages. Punitive damages are not used to restore the victim but rather to punish the defendant.

In some cases, if the court determines the at fault driver was careless or acted with reckless abandon, you may also be able to receive punitive damages. Punitive damages are not used to restore the victim but rather to punish the defendant.