words Al Woods
There are more than six million vehicle accidents each year in the USA. These incidents cause injuries to around three million people, of which two million are permanently injured. Being involved in a traffic accident can be very painful, both physically and ultimately financially. Indeed, the total cost of traffic accidents in the USA each year is almost $900 Billion.
There are a number of causes of vehicle accidents including DUI, driving too fast, or not paying due care and attention. If someone is injured and it is not their fault, they are entitled to claim compensation for the injuries and damage they have sustained. Whether you are the unlucky victim of a traffic accident or the cause of it, it is always highly advisable to seek out sound legal representation. Court proceedings are likely to ensue and you need to ensure that you have the best possible protection. So let’s see what is likely to happen if you accidentally crash into someone else or someone else’s property?
What Will A Victim Claim Compensation For?
A victim of an accident can claim compensation for a range of damages but these damages usually fall under one of two categories: economic damages and non-economic damages. Issues that would be classes as economic damages would be the cost of medical treatment incurred after the accident, the cost of vehicle or property repairs and any subsequent loss of earnings if the victim in the accident is unable to work due to the consequences of the crash. Non-economic damages for which victims may seek restitution cover issues like pain and suffering, physical and emotional trauma, and loss of quality of life. If you have accidentally crashed your vehicle into someone’s vehicle or property, you should be aware of these potential claims against you.
How Can You Prepare Yourself To Defend Against A Claim?
In minor incidents, you probably assume that a solution can be found quickly through the two parties’ insurance companies. In an ideal world, the victim’s insurance company would make reasonable demands on you and your insurance will oblige without too much issue. Commonly however, a satisfactory arrangement cannot be agreed, and you will find yourself facing legal proceedings. In fact there are some lawyers who suggest that you personally should not speak to your insurance company at all. The folks at Tate Law Offices say that insurance companies have all kinds of underhand tricks to stop them from having to pay out, including recording phone calls and using them against you. Insurance companies profits come from paying out as little as possible and know the best way to ensure a favourable outcome for themselves. In order to stop yourself from being taken advantage of, you should find a law firm that specializes in vehicle incidents whose experience will be invaluable.
How Much Are You Likely To Have To Pay Out?
The amount of compensation due is, of course, dependent on the circumstances of the accident and the damage and injuries sustained by the victim. An experienced team of accident lawyers will ensure that the victim and their representatives are not able to take advantage of you and force you to pay out more than is required. It is possible that your legal team will be able to negotiate a satisfactory out of court settlement and if that is not possible then they will prepare your defense for court proceedings. The average payout to the victim of a traffic accident is somewhere between $15,000 and $30,000 but this may be higher or lower depending on the incident. Often the compensation received is around three times the cost of medical bills and takes into account pain and suffering and other non-economic damages.
Unfortunately, traffic accidents are very common and whether or not you are the unfortunate victim or the unlucky cause of an accident, they can be extremely stressful. More often than not accidents are exactly that: accidents. A momentary lapse in concentration, a quick acceleration to make the lights, and before you know it, you have crashed your vehicle. Whilst accidents can cause a great deal of suffering, as long as you do the right things afterward, the damages can be mitigated. The first thing you should do if you have a crash is to seek medical attention for any injuries that you have sustained and then when you have been checked out, seek sound legal representation. Do not feel attacked if somebody makes a claim against you. Understand that you would be advised to do the same if you were in their shoes. Let your lawyers take care of it and focus on your own recovery.