The statistics regarding car accidents are alarming: there are as many as six million car accidents in the United States each year, resulting in 90 deaths per day and three million injuries a year. Even though using a seat belt reduces the risk of death in a car accident by 45 percent, one in seven people do not buckle up when they drive. Impairment, exceeding the speed limit, and driving carelessly or recklessly are the primary causes of car accidents.
Finding the Right Car Accident Attorney for You
If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, seeking professional legal counsel is likely to play a critical role in your ability to obtain the compensation to which you are entitled – and that you will need on your journey toward recovery. In Greenville, the experienced car accident attorneys at Bobby Jones Law, LLC, dedicate their practice to helping clients like you prevail with compensation that covers their complete physical, financial, and emotional damages. Bobby Jones has the experience, legal skills, and resources you’re looking for.
When you need a car accident attorney, you’re looking for experience, and Bobby Jones has more than a decade of impressive experience protecting the legal rights of car accident victims – in dedicated pursuit of their claims’ optimal outcomes. When it comes to car accident claims, there is no substitute for experience, and Bobby is proud to offer his wealth of experience successfully guiding car accident claims toward beneficial resolutions to you.
What makes a great car accident attorney? Legal skill. In addition to experience, you are looking for an attorney with the legal skill to construct your most substantial claim, to negotiate a settlement that supports your best interests deftly, and to be well prepared to head to court if it comes to that. Bobby Jones is a seasoned trial attorney who does not shy away from going to trial when the insurance company involved chooses not to negotiate fair settlement terms in good faith. Many insurance companies are better prepared to negotiate when they recognize you have a skilled litigator on your side. Mr. Jones has recovered millions for his clients in settlements throughout his impressive legal career.
It is challenging to bring your strongest claim without the resources necessary to do so, and at Bobby Jones Law, we have the resources you are looking for. Complicated car accidents often require all the following (and it takes resources to obtain them):
- Extensive investigative efforts focused on obtaining all relevant evidence
- Accident reconstructions that allow you to skillfully support your claim with clear evidentiary information that can be difficult to refute
- Expert testimony that helps solidify your claim and refute any doubts conjured up by the insurance company
Your Car Accident Claim: What to Expect
You’ve been injured by another driver’s negligence, and the path forward is challenging. Knowing what to expect, however, can help. While your claim will be unique to your situation, most car accident claims follow a basic path forward, including:
- Consulting with an experienced car accident attorney
- Gathering all relevant evidence
- Establishing the other driver’s fault in the matter
- Negotiating with the insurance company for the compensation to which you are entitled
- Preparing to move forward toward trial if fair negotiations stall
What to Expect When You Meet with Your Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you may be feeling at your most vulnerable, but you need professional legal guidance. Many people find the experience of contacting an attorney daunting because they aren’t sure what questions to ask or what they need to do in general. You shouldn’t let this dissuade you from setting up an appointment. In truth, your attorney works for you, and he or she is there to help you make the right decisions for you. Toward this end, you can expect the attorney to engage in all the following:
- Asking you questions about the accident, your injuries, and how they’ve affected your life
- Helping you better understand what you can expect moving forward in terms of your car accident claim
- Helping you understand what steps you can take to protect your car accident claim while it processes
- Beginning initial strategizing for your claim (how best to proceed)
If you feel comfortable working with the car accident attorney with whom you consult, and he or she inspires your confidence, you’ve likely found an attorney who is a good fit for you, and it’s time to begin the claims process.
The damages (or losses) you incur as a result of being injured in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence can add up quickly. In addition to property damage to your vehicle, the damages for which you can seek compensation include:
- Your medical expenses, which – if your injuries are severe – may be ongoing and may need to address secondary health issues
- Your lost earnings, which can include an overall decrease in your ability to earn into the future
- Your physical and emotional pain and suffering, which can be one of the more challenging obstacles you’ll need to overcome
Ensuring that your complete damages are well represented in your car accident claim will be vital to your ability to obtain just compensation and to fully regain your health and well-being as a result. This is a critical task best left in the capable hands of your accomplished car accident attorney.
Most Common Types of Car Accidents
Rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accidents. Americans are avid tailgaters—and also happen to be chronically distracted, whether from using a phone, eating, changing radio stations, focusing on the GPS, daydreaming, or other passengers. Rear-end collisions are not typically fatal and generally occur in heavy start and stop traﬃc situations. That being said, rear-end collisions can result in signiﬁcant, long-lasting injuries.
A side-impact collision
Side-impact collisions, also known as T-bone accidents, occur when one car hits another on one side or the other. Side-impact accidents often occur in intersections and can cause signiﬁcant damage to the vehicle involved and result in signiﬁcant injuries to the passengers, particularly those on the side which was struck.
Head-on collisions are among the deadliest type of auto accidents and can occur when two vehicles collide, front-to-front, or when one car strikes a tree, animal, or another stationary object. When snow, rain, ice, fog, or other inclement weather exists, or in cases where one driver is impaired, a head-on collision can occur. Head-on collisions are more likely to cause death or severe injury than any other type of car accident.
Multi-vehicle collisions are those which involve at least three cars and often occur on busy freeways and highways. Multi-vehicle car accidents are extremely dangerous and, like head-on collisions, are more likely to cause death or serious injury. Multi-vehicle accidents are becoming more common across the United States—most likely due to increased traﬃc and congested highways.
Typical Injuries Sustained in a Car Accident
Some car accident injuries can resolve within a matter of days with no medical treatment at all. In contrast, more severe injuries can cause long-term or permanent injuries, including partial or total disability. Some factors which impact the severity of the injuries sustained include whether the person was wearing a seat belt, where the car was struck (front, rear, or side), the speed the car or cars were traveling at the time of the impact, whether the car had airbags, and which direction the victim was facing (straight ahead, or the body and/or head turned in another direction).
Impact injuries are those resulting when a body part hits a car part—such as the knee striking the dashboard.
Penetrating injuries are cuts and abrasions caused by shattering glass or loose objects which ﬂy through the air at the time of impact.
A whiplash injury is most likely to occur when a person is struck from the rear, while the more severe head, chest, and spinal cord injuries can occur in high-speed, side-collision, or head-on collision.
Dealing with Insurance Following a Car Accident
Insurance companies are well-known for being diﬃcult to deal with following a car accident. After all, despite the insurance commercials we commonly see, the goal of insurance companies is to pay out as little as possible, thereby increasing their annual ﬁnancial bottom line. While the right decision to make following your South Carolina car accident is to contact an experienced car injury attorney, in the interim, it is important that you do not give your insurance company a recorded statement (these statements are often used later to minimize your recovery), and that you not accept the ﬁrst oﬀer from the insurance company.
Often insurance companies will oﬀer a low settlement amount very soon after the accident, and just as often, victims of a car accident accept this oﬀer, thinking they will not get a better one. Unfortunately, the injuries from the accident turn out to be considerably worse than initially thought, leaving the victim to pay medical expenses related to the accident out of their own pocket.
Common Tactics Employed by Car insurance Companies
As established, the insurance company is not on your side, and an early settlement offer is not likely to be in your best interest. Still, there are other common tactics that insurance companies like to turn to in their efforts to keep their settlements low and their profits high.
Sometimes, insurance companies will simply deny valid claims out of hand. The idea is to offload any claimants who are too discouraged to keep fighting. Don’t be fooled by the insurance company’s bravado. Simply denying your claim does not negate it – only the court can do that. If your experienced car accident attorney believes you have a strong claim, the court can decide the rest.
The insurance company may attempt to cast doubt on your claim by denying the extent of your injuries and/or by denying their policyholder’s fault in the matter. While this may scare some claimants off, you shouldn’t let it affect you. The extent of your damages is not difficult to prove (via medical records and medical bills), and the evidence gathered at the scene will help your car accident attorney establish fault in your claim. It’s important to note that, in South Carolina, even if you are deemed to share fault in the accident that leaves you injured, you will not be denied the right to seek compensation for the percentage of damages the other driver is responsible for (as long as you, yourself, are not responsible for more than 50 percent).
Complicating the Process
Car accident claims are complicated and lengthy in general. If the insurance company takes it upon itself to complicate the process, it can discourage even the heartiest claimants. The best path forward is sticking to your guns and doing what it takes to ensure that you are justly compensated. It’s worth pointing out that the law takes a dim view of insurance companies that get up to these types of tactics (and there are specific laws against these practices).
What You Can Do to Protect Your Car Accident Claim
Again, your car accident claim will be unique to your situation, but there are several steps that all car accident victims can take to help protect their claims (as applicable and in accordance with your ability at the time). These include the following:
- Pull your car as far out of the line of traffic as you can
- Call 911
- Render aid if someone is injured at the scene and you are able to provide assistance
- Wait for the authorities to arrive
- Accept the medical attention you need at the scene, and if none is offered, obtain the medical attention you need as soon as possible after you leave the scene
- Keep your comments about the car accident to yourself (the insurance company can twist your words for their gain)
- if the police ask you direct questions about the accident, answer them to the best of your ability (as succinctly and honestly as possible)
- Collect evidence at the scene in the form of as many pictures from as many angles and perspectives as you can manage and in the form of eyewitness testimonies (including contact information)
- Write out your recollections about how the accident happened in as much detail as you can (capturing your memories in this way can keep them fresh and can prove to be a valuable tool in your car accident claim)
- Consult with a dedicated car accident attorney as soon after the accident as you are able
- Carefully follow your medical team’s advice and instructions – in service of your health and to help demonstrate that you take your injuries as seriously as the car insurance company needs to take them
It’s Time to Consult with a Dedicated Greenville Car Accident Attorney
The accomplished Greenville car accident attorneys at Bobby Jones Law, LLC have the experience, legal expertise, and drive that you’re looking for, and we’re standing by to help. To learn more, please don’t wait to reach out to our dedicated legal team by contacting or calling us at 864-432-1514 for a free, no-obligation consultation today.