According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), someone in the United States is involved in a car accident every 10 seconds. Motor vehicle injury is the prevalent type of case involving Personal Injury. Six states, including Iowa, make the owner of the vehicle responsible for all damages, whether or not the negligent driver has assets or insurance to pay a judgment. One of the greatest sources of civil litigation in the United States is Negligence. Negligence is described as the "failure to exercise the care toward others which a reasonable or prudent person would do in the circumstances, or taking action which such a reasonable person would not. Negligence is accidental…but a crime can also constitute negligence, such as reckless driving. Negligence can result in all types of accidents causing physical and/or property damage," according to the free legal dictionary online. It is VERY important to contact a Personal Injury lawyer as soon as possible if you have been injured in an accident you have not caused. It is also very important to call your insurance company no matter whom or what caused the accident.
Avoiding an Accident
There are many factors involved today in trying to avoid accidents. Much more now than in the past, it is imperative to beware of aggressive, drunk or reckless drivers in addition to standard cautions, such as road and weather conditions. It is important to be extremely cautious. If you are looking at these pages, more than likely you or someone you love has been in an accident and you are seeking information about accidents and Personal Injury lawyers. Reviewing the information on "What to do in case of an injury or accident" may be very beneficial to you. For more detailed information about avoiding an accident, please see the website for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
An experienced Personal Injury attorney knows the law in your state and reviews all the factors in your case, such as the police reports, and talks to the witnesses. Finding who is negligent in a traffic accident is crucial. You may believe you know exactly who or what was negligent, yet may not know which law has been violated. When going into litigation, judges review several factors in determining the requirements that place negligence. All of these factors are known by Personal Injury attorneys, and they understand the importance of little details and will represent you well.
Uninsured or Underinsured Motorists
Although states require insurance on any automobile, many drivers cannot afford adequate insurance or let their insurance lapse and do not carry any insurance at all. Most states now require every driver to have insurance and to have liability insurance in case of an accident. Much too often, the required insurance is insufficient for most accidents when injuries occur. You may have insurance that has "Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist" coverage that will pay for bodily injury if the responsible party does not have the proper insurance to cover all of your damages or injuries. Contacting a competent Personal Injury lawyer as quickly as possible to ensure you are protected t is essential, particularly in the case of uninsured or underinsured motorists.
Hit and run accidents are also usually covered by your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. In this case, your damages and expenses should be covered by your insurance company. DO NOT SETTLE with the other driver's insurance company until you know every detail about what your damages and injuries will cost and review these with your own Personal Injury lawyer. Your underinsured motorist coverage may not provide compensation to pay for the amounts over and above the other driver's insurance if you have settled with them. This is another important reason to contact and review everything with your own Personal Injury lawyer. Also remember that your insurance company will request a credit if you are paid over and above the reported benefits from the other driver's insurance. This includes any stackable uninsured/underinsured insurance allowed by some states. The combination of insurance coverage from several policies or insurance coverage for several vehicles listed on one policy may apply.
Most do not have to learn or understand what No-Fault Insurance is all about. If you live or are traveling in the states of Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, you may be under a No-Fault Insurance Law. Some states, such as Colorado, repealed their No-Fault Insurance law and Florida's law ends in 2006. Since the laws of the state in which the accident occurred determine which driver is responsible for which damages, this is another reason to contact a Personal Injury lawyer as soon as possible to ensure your rights are protected.
There are several types of No-Fault Insurance Laws. In some states, neither driver is considered at fault and each one generally submits claims to their own insurance. Other places, such as Canada, have limits on the ability to file suit for damages. If your damages are above a certain amount, you may file suit. In the United States, there is not a pure no-fault insurance where no one is to blame for any accident. At least two states, Pennsylvania and New Jersey, have "Choice No-Fault Insurance." If you are in an accident with someone who has this type of insurance in that state and they have this insurance, you can not file suit against them and they can not file suite against you. Due to the variety of specific sections of the various laws, deciphering these laws may be complicated. Competent Personal Injury lawyers know these laws and are more qualified to assist you in the recovery of your losses.