In the United States, the automobile is a way of life. Most of us drive or ride in a car, bus, truck, or other motor vehicles every day. However, we often forget just how dangerous they can be and how often serious car crashes occur. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; automobile accidents are the cause of one death every 12 to 15 minutes and injure more than 2.5 million people each year. Our Indianapolis auto accident attorneys have seen firsthand, that nearly half of those injured come away with permanent disabilities like brain damage, paralysis, amputation injuries, orthopedic injuries and other serious ailments that significantly and negatively affect the lives of crash victims. In cases where a death results, the family members of those killed suffer both emotionally and, often, financially.
How Our Car Accident Lawyers Can Help Crash Victims
If you have been hurt in a car crash, we want to help. After a collision, you may feel unsure about your future. How will you afford ongoing medical expenses? When can you go back to work? What happens if you can’t work anymore? Who will pay for the help you need around the house? How will you fix or replace your damaged car? Is your case worth taking to court?
These are serious issues, and our legal team is here to help you seek the best solution for the unique circumstances of your case.
We are prepared to find out what really happened in the crash and who was at fault. To do that, we often gather information from you, the police and witnesses about the accident, and we even work with accident reconstruction experts to model the chain of events. In addition to investigating your crash, you can also count on us to deal with the insurance companies and the courts on your behalf to manage your claim. This lets you focus on your recovery and minimize your stress.
What to Do After a Crash
After a car accident, the most important thing to do first is to get out of danger. If the accident is minor, move your car to the side of the road or to a location that is not in traffic. If the accident is more serious or your car cannot be moved, call 911, put on your hazard lights and use a flare, safety triangles or cones to divert traffic around your vehicle until the police or emergency services arrive.
It is a good idea to seek medical attention even if you have no apparent injuries. Some injuries are not immediately noticeable. You may suffer from internal bleeding or a spinal injury, for example, but not realize it until later. Be sure to be evaluated by a doctor as soon as possible after the accident.
Documenting the Crash
The time immediately following a car accident can be crucial for your claim. After calling emergency services and obtaining medical attention, it is imperative to remember two things:
- Do not provide a verbal or written statement to any insurance company.
- Do not admit fault, even if you believe you may have made a mistake.
- In the chaos that follows a crash, you may not be able to see the whole picture. The most important thing is to collect what information you can and let the professionals do their jobs. If the insurance company for the other driver asks for a written or recorded statement, politely refuse. If your own insurer asks for a statement, come see us for a free consultation before providing them with a statement.After the accident, there is some important information you should get and some things to document that could help facilitate your claim. If you are not able to document the scene just after the incident, try to return as soon as possible after seeking medical attention or ask someone to do it for you.
Types of Car Accident Compensation Available for Victims
Most settlements that are initially offered to accident victims by insurance companies do little to cover the financial hardship that they face. But a serious car accident may drastically affect your life, depending on the extent of your injuries. Your injuries may affect your ability to work, in the short-term or long-term, your ability to care for yourself, and your day-to-day quality of life.
Depending on the circumstances of your injury and accident, you may seek compensation for the following types of damages:
- Vehicle Damage
- Pain and Suffering
- Wrongful Death
- And More
Common Causes of Car Crashes
Most collisions are the result of some form of human carelessness or negligence. If you suffered an injury in a wreck caused by someone else’s wrongdoing, that person and their insurer should be held accountable.
Some of the most common types of driver negligence include:
- Distracted Driving. This includes anything that takes your eyes and focus off of the road, especially using a cell phone.
- Drunk Driving. Someone who is driving while intoxicated does not have the same reflexes, judgment, reaction times or control over what they are doing as someone who is sober.
- Drowsy Driving. Drowsy driving can be almost as bad as drunk driving. Fatigue affects your reaction times and reflexes, and someone could literally fall asleep while driving and cause a crash.
- Speeding. Higher speeds mean that it takes longer to stop or react to changes in traffic. If someone is speeding, they may cause a wreck just because they could not stop their vehicle or swerve quickly enough.
- Traffic Violations. Running a red light, failure to yield right-of-way, going the wrong way, not stopping at a stop sign and making an illegal turn are but a few examples of infractions that could cause a crash.
- Vehicle Defects. Vehicle defects, such as defective tires and airbags, can cause serious wrecks or make injuries worse than they otherwise would have been. If you believe that your car’s manufacturer failed to produce a reasonably safe vehicle, you may be able to hold the manufacturer responsible for your injuries.
- Get information from the other driver. Ask to see their driver’s license and proof of insurance, and make sure to write down their name, phone number, and the make, model and color of the vehicle, as well as its license plate number. Use the camera on your phone to take pictures of these documents.
- Get witness information. If there were any witnesses at the scene, get their contact information. Eyewitness testimony can be very important in establishing the facts of a crash.
- Take pictures of the vehicles and scene. Many people have cameras on their phones now, but if that’s not your case, keep a small camera in the glove compartment of your vehicle in case of an accident.
- Report the incident to your insurance company. Do not delay reporting an accident to your insurance company, and be careful in deciding to pay for the damage yourself. The costs may end up being significantly more than they appear at first.
- Get help from an experienced attorney as soon as you can. Immediately after a crash, contact the Sloan Firm for a free consultation about your case. If you wait too long after the accident, witnesses and evidence may disappear. Your attorney can handle all communications with insurance companies for you.
Why You Should Choose Glaser and Ebbs for Your Car Crash Case
At Glaser and Ebbs Attorneys at Law, what matters to you, matters to us. We know that when you have been in a serious car crash, you need someone in your corner fighting for you and helping you through the aftermath. We are ready to listen closely to you and help you address your concerns and fight for you.
We have experience fighting insurance companies and we know very well how they operate. Large insurance companies are profit-driven, so they try to achieve any reduction in claims that they can in order to boost their bottom line. There are several strategies they use to get a case settled at the lowest amount possible. This can create a nightmare for the injured people when the amount an insurer offers does not come close to covering the losses.
With severe injuries, many people are no longer able to function and earn a living, will require extensive medical care, treatment, and rehabilitation, and will suffer extensive economic damages. Lives are forever changed through negligent actions, and the parties involved must be held accountable.
The Indiana Auto Accident Attorneys at Glaser & Ebbs are skilled at representing clients and their family members injured in car crashes. It often takes legal action to receive fair compensation in these cases. If the responsible party is not found, we will help you look for other coverage. Contact Glaser & Ebbs to learn more about your legal rights and options.