Even the most careful of teen drivers is at a higher risk of getting involved in an accident than other populations, simply because teens lack substantial experience behind the wheel. They may also be more likely to drive while using a cellphone or other electronic device, drive recklessly, drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or drive while distracted by other teenage passengers. If a teen driver struck your car and you incurred financial losses, you can speak with a personal injury lawyer about your legal rights and options. Auto accident attorneys can file personal injury claims on behalf of Gaithersburg-area residents who have been injured by drivers of any age.
If you’ve recently been the victim of an auto accident, you should consult with an experienced auto accident lawyer serving Gaithersburg . You may be entitled to file a personal injury claim and seek an auto accident settlement for financial, physical, and emotional damages sustained. Here is a guide to identifying your total damages after a car accident.
Emotional DamagesYour auto accident lawyer should seek damages for mental or physical distress when he files your personal injury claim. These damages may compensate for the emotional anguish at the time of the accident, as well as resulting mental pain and suffering after the accident. Examples of such pain and suffering may include depression, anxiety, phobias, insomnia, and stress. Emotional damages are calculated based upon the severity of the symptoms, the type of physical injuries suffered, the circumstances surrounding the car accident, and the likelihood of future mental pain and suffering.
Physical damages refer to any injuries you suffered as a result of the car accident. The damages that you may be awarded in your auto accident settlement will depend upon the severity of the injuries, the location of the injuries, your prognosis for recovery, and the affect that the injuries have on your professional and social relationships. For instance, if you have suffered from extreme, permanent facial scarring, you might be awarded more in physical damages than if you simply suffered from a broken bone. Physical damages include compensation for all medical expenses, including in-home care services.
Financial damages are damages that you suffered due to lost wages, or vehicle repairs that weren’t covered by your auto insurance. If your auto accident injuries were severe enough that you missed work, even for a brief period of time, you might be entitled to recoup your lost wages. If your injuries prevent you from working at all in the future, or prevent you from working in the field in which you’re specifically qualified, you may get a higher auto accident settlement.
It’s a fact – Car and truck accidents often cause injuries. If you are involved in a car or motorcycle crash, it’s important to promptly consult an auto accident lawyer near Gaithersburg to ensure your legal rights are protected. Your personal injury lawyer will work with you to help you determine the facts of the situation and the types of damages you may be awarded in a personal injury lawsuit.
In this video, you will learn more about what to do after an auto accident, as well as what your auto accident lawyer can do for you. Following an accident, all the names and contact information of the individuals involved should be recorded, and statements taken on the scene by a police or other law enforcement official. Even if this process is not followed exactly, your personal injury attorney may be able to follow up with those involved to get the facts needed to present your case.
While most individuals are familiar with accidents involving personal cars, trucks, or motorcycles, public transportation vehicles are also at risk for accidents as well. Bus and train accidents cause the same injuries and hardships that result from car and truck accidents , but seeking compensation is much more difficult without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer serving Rockville. Every time you ride public transportation, the carrier assumes responsibility for your safety. Pedestrians and bicyclists sharing the roads with public transportation also have the right to safe conduct by bus and train operators. Thus, if you are involved in a public transportation accident, you may have the right to sue for compensation to cover lost wages and medical expenses associated with your injury. However, seeking compensation from a public transportation service is not the same as filing a normal personal injury lawsuit following a crash in which everyone involved is a private party. Many municipalities that operate bus, subway, or train systems have special immunities or “notice” requirements in place to limit their liability, or worse, extinguish your claim entirely if all of the special rules are not followed. This is why working with an experienced personal injury lawyer is so important—your lawyer will ensure you follow all necessary regulations and meet any required deadlines to file your case to avoid the most common causes of dismissal and help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Although motorcycle accidents are no more or less common than car and truck accidents, a motorcycle crash is more likely to cause serious injuries than a collision between two passenger vehicles. There are many possible causes of motorcycle accidents, including driver lapses, poor weather and road conditions, and even vehicle limitations that can increase the risk of a motorcycle crash under certain circumstances. If you have been involved in a motorcycle crash near Gaithersburg, it’s best to work with a personal injury lawyer to determine issues such as fault and damages due to help you recover from any injuries you may have sustained.
Poor Road ConditionsMotorcycles are more prone to accidents resulting from poor road and weather conditions than enclosed passenger vehicles. This is because motorcycles are both smaller and less stable than four-wheeled vehicles, and can be easily affected by potholes, cracks, slick conditions, and even debris or obstacles in the road. Driving in poor weather conditions not only further reduces motorcycle stability, but also reduces the visibility of the motorcycle to other motorists, which can increase the risk of a collision.
Distracted driving is a common cause of car and truck crashes, and also a frequent factor involved in motorcycle crashes as well. Car and motorcycle drivers who are distracted from the road, even momentarily, are more likely to cause an accident due to inattention. As a motorcyclist, it’s important to both pay attention to the road at all times and take notice of the drivers around you to determine whether distraction may keep them from noticing you. Car and truck drivers can benefit from avoiding distractions and constantly scanning the area around their vehicle for motorcycles, which can be easy to miss due to their small size and fast movements.
Studies have shown that a driver’s view of a motorcycle may be momentarily obscured by the standard pillars on the left and right edge of a windshield. So a driver who approaches a stop sign, and takes but a quick glance to the left or right, may not see a motorcycle approaching on the boulevard. Similarly, a driver intending to turn left across oncoming traffic, may not see an approaching motorcycle “hidden” behind the left pillar of the windshield.
Taking precautions when riding a motorcycle or sharing the road with motorcycles is the best way to avoid a motorcycle crash. If an accident does occur, contact a motorcycle accident attorney promptly for help with pursuing any personal injury claims.
If you have been hurt in an accident with a commercial truck, your first step should be to contact a truck accident lawyer . Truck accidents often result in personal injury claims, which, if handled promptly and professionally, can allow victims to be compensated for their injuries, expenses, and suffering.
Accidents with large trucks, like eighteen-wheelers or other large freight carriers, can result in catastrophic injuries. While truck drivers are typically pretty careful drivers, large truck crashes still occur. Sadly, semi truck accidents often result in death or very serious injury simply because the vehicles involved are so large. But a personal injury lawsuit can be successful even if the victim experiences a comparatively minor injury, like whiplash. In addition, a personal injury lawyer can help ensure that the truck driver, trucking company, and auto manufacturer are all potentially held liable.
Car accidents affect millions of people each year, and while some accidents are minor, others lead to serious injuries and loss of wages. What factors contribute to these frequent accidents? Distracted driving, including mobile phone use, is a major issue, as is driver fatigue and driving while intoxicated. Whatever the cause of an accident, the steps you take after one occurs can make a big difference in your ability to get compensation for your damage and injuries. After getting any necessary medical attention, be sure to call a lawyer before you consider any settlement offers. Find out more about car accidents in this infographic from Sussman & Simcox: Attorneys at Law. We assist clients with personal injury claims in Gaithersburg, and we can protect your rights throughout the personal injury settlement process. Contact us when you need a lawyer to assist you with a personal injury claim, and please share this information with your friends and family.
A truck accident lawyer regularly handles legal claims from individuals who have suffered serious personal injuries in Gaithersburg and Rockville. When it comes to truck accidents, the law is often even more complicated than it is with average accident injury claims. This complication stems from the fact that truck accidents involve more people, from the truck driver to the company that employs him. Keep reading to find out more about truck accident responsibility.
When a semi-truck accident results in personal injury, numerous parties are almost always involved. Semi-truck accidents can implicate many players, including the driver, the owner of the truck, the company that leased the truck, the vehicle manufacturer, and the shipper or loader of the truck’s cargo. Each party is covered by different insurance, and each insurance company generally has different truck accident attorneys, making such accident claims even more complicated.
To avoid liability, each party will often attempt to blame the others for the accident. A truck accident lawyer can help determine who actually bears legal responsibility for an accident—and who owes compensation. For example, a truck company might claim that an accident was caused by defective brakes. But the brake manufacturer might blame the leasing company, arguing that the organization failed to maintain the brakes properly.
Trucking companies today have a much more difficult time avoiding liability, making it a bit easier for personal injury claims to be properly compensated after a truck accident. These big companies formerly attempted to escape liability by blaming a driver entirely. But new federal laws have made all companies owning trucking permits responsible for an accident involving any truck with its placard. That means that trucking companies can no longer pretend that their drivers are simply independent contractors for whose actions they cannot be held legally liable.
When buying or renewing car insurance, most people naturally look for places to save money. But when you buy insurance, Rockville personal injury attorneys suggest paying special attention to PIP and uninsured motorist coverage.
PIP stands for personal injury protection and is no-fault coverage designed to pay immediate medical expenses and lost wages after an accident. Individuals apply for these benefits from their own insurance companies and they are payable regardless of who caused the accident. Minimum coverage is $2,500 in benefits, which generally covers an emergency room visit, x-rays, some follow-up care, and some time off work. PIP is a great value in that it does not cost very much to add to your auto policy, and each member of your household will then have access to their own $2,500 benefit.
Uninsured motorist coverage protects you if you suffer personal injury in an auto accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver. Like PIP, this benefit is purchased through your own insurance company. It gives you the peace of mind in knowing that if you or other occupants of your car are seriously injured, and the other driver is inadequately insured, there will still be coverage available to pay for your injuries and wages. Given the high cost of medical care, families can be devastated with uncovered hospital or surgical bills after an accident. Insure yourself. The next time you renew your auto insurance make sure you consider raising your uninsured motorist limits.
All personal injury claims in Gaithersburg or surrounding area immediately receive the attention of insurance companies eager to minimize their financial obligations to victims. Once the insured or the injured person opens a claim, an insurance adjuster gets to work to investigate the facts of the accident and try to negotiate settlement of the claim. To protect yourself, make sure you have a good accident attorney to help you navigate insurance company demands. Read on to learn more about what role insurance companies and adjustors play in personal injury cases.
Speak to the Insured Party
An insurance adjustor’s first step is to speak to the individual covered by their insurance policy. If the insured individual has suffered personal injury in a car, truck, boating, or other accident, the adjustor will ask for a recorded statement describing the accident and all injuries.
Request Official Records
Car accidents are generally accompanied by police reports and accident reports drivers file with the state department of motor vehicles. An insurance company will request copies of all these documents as they begin to build their file.
Request Additional Documentation
Once the claim has been filed, the adjustor generally identifies him/herself, explains applicable policy limits, and asks the claimant or claimant’s personal injury attorney to provide documents that may be relevant to the claim. For example, an adjustor may ask for medical bills, medical records, proof of earnings, and proof of property damage.
Investigate Injured Persons
If you are the victim of an accident, the individual who caused your personal injury most likely has his insurance company investigating you. The opposing insurance company will look for any information that might defeat your claim or lower its value. For example, the company may Google you or examine insurance claims databases to see if you have ever filed a personal injury claim before. Adjustors may call your employer to find out how you are doing back at work. They even access accident victims’ Facebook pages to see if they have posts that suggest they are not truly injured.
If you file a personal injury claim in Gaithersburg , your insurance carrier may try to offer a settlement to resolve your case. Many people will be tempted to take early offers put forth by an insurance company, but that may not always be the best idea. Watch this video to learn more.
Insurance companies are profit-driven organizations, and are therefore motivated to reduce their expenses. One key way that these companies try to reduce expenses is by paying out the smallest settlements they can. To ensure that you receive a fair payout from your insurance carrier, rather the sum that they initially offer, consult an attorney with experience in personal injury and insurance claims immediately after an accident, who can give you professional guidance through the claims process.
If you have been wrongfully injured in a car, truck, or motorcycle accident near Gaithersburg, you might consider contacting a personal injury lawyer to help you seek compensation for medical care and other damages. While every personal injury case will be unique depending on the individual circumstances, there are some general procedures that you can expect during a case. Read on to get a closer look at the components of a personal injury case.
Your immediate priority should be to seek appropriate medical care, though you will want to make sure that your care is well-documented to be sure that all the details are available when you contact an attorney.Attorney Consultation
Most personal injury lawyers will offer a free initial consultation to discuss the viability of your case. If you do decide to pursue a case, your lawyer will gather details about the accident and your injuries or the injuries/wrongful death of a loved one you are representing. Most often, the legal fee in a personal injury cases will be based on a percentage of the settlement or trial verdict, meaning that upfront legal costs are not a factor and should not hold you back from seeking the representation you deserve.
Demand and Negotiation
Once your attorney has assembled all documentation of your injuries and losses, a demand will be made to the defendant’s insurance carrier. Typically, a claims adjustor will review the demand materials sent by your attorney. Negotiations then commence to try and settle the case outside of court. In many cases the claims representative will first request additional information about your health history or wages before completing an evaluation of your claim.
While most personal injury cases settle outside of court, there remain a large number of cases where a settlement may not be reached in negotiation. In these situations, your lawyer will file a lawsuit, which will commence the process of discovery. This process entails the gathering of information through depositions, document collection and review, medical examinations, and other exploration of the liability and injury issues in a case. As discovery is wrapping up, the case may be sent to mediation, which will be followed by a trial if a settlement is still not reached.
Commercial trucks carry an inherent danger on the road, because these vehicles are much more difficult to maneuver than passenger vehicles, and they can cause much more significant property damage and injuries following accidents . In many cases when commercial truck accidents take place, there are a number of factors to consider when determining fault. This article will take a closer look at some of the underlying factors that might increase the risk of accidents involving eighteen wheelers or other heavy equipment. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a commercial truck accident, you should not hesitate to contact a personal injury lawyer near Gaithersburg and Rockville area to explore the details of your case.
Truck drivers often have unrealistic schedules resulting in long days on the road, which can pose a big danger with driver fatigue. Being sleep deprived on the road can reduce reaction times and cause a driver to overlook safety guidelines that might otherwise prevent serious accidents. In June 2014, in a fatal highway accident that made national headlines, a Wal-Mart tractor trailer operator slammed into other vehicles ahead after failing to notice traffic slowing in a construction zone. After the accident, investigators learned that the truck driver had been awake for 28 hours leading up to the accident.
Poor Road Conditions
Bad weather is a risk for any driver, but stopping a big rig on an icy road or controlling the vehicle in windy conditions might be much more difficult for commercial drivers. When weather and other poor road conditions are present, all drivers should be more cautious and aware of trucks on the road.
Aside from driver negligence , failed equipment and inadequate driver training are leading causes of commercial truck accidents. In cases where an equipment failure led to the accident, there may be multiple defendants involved, including the truck manufacturer and the trucking fleet.
Unsafe Driver Practices
Passenger vehicles do have their role in truck accidents, as there are a number of unsafe practices that can limit a commercial driver’s ability to respond in time. Driving in between trucks, passing on the right, and abruptly changing lanes are all habits that could lead to dangerous situations involving larger vehicles.
Truck accidents are often different from other types of auto accidents, as they involve larger vehicles with the potential for severe damage. Thus, truck accident claims require a careful evaluation of the events and factors involved to determine fault and the proper amount of compensation. Knowing what questions your Gaithersburg attorney may ask you when filing a personal injury claim following a truck accident can help you prepare for this process.
What Were the Road Conditions Like?
Road conditions can play a significant role in accident risk , particularly for trucks. Your lawyer will ask you to describe the road conditions at the time of the accident to determine whether factors such as the weather, the lighting conditions, the amount of traffic, visibility and the road conditions justified the trucker’s actions, or whether he failed to compensate for them properly.
Have You Spoken With an Insurance Company?
Insurance companies will often take steps to obtain statements that could be used against your personal injury claim as soon as possible. Therefore, it is best for you to speak with a lawyer before you make any sort of recorded statement over the phone, either for your insurance or the trucker’s insurance. Your lawyer will want to know if you have made such a statement already, as it can affect how your case is presented. If you have not made a statement, your attorney will determine whether a statement is necessary and, if so, how to prepare for it.
When Was the Accident?
Truck accidents and their related personal injury claims must be addressed quickly to prevent accidental or intentional destruction of evidence. Because trucking companies often destroy their records legally after a short period of time, your lawyer must act fast to obtain documentation while it is available. Additionally, some accidents require a physical inspection of the vehicles by a qualified expert to determine such things as point of impact, the condition of the braking system, or whether headlights or brake lights were operational. This inspection must take place before any vehicle repairs begin. Thus, your lawyer will need to know when your accident occurred to determine whether certain types of evidence are still available.
Truck accidents can cause devastating damage in the blink of an eye. Your truck accident attorney serving Gaithersburg and Rockville is on your side when it comes to achieving a personal injury settlement.
If you are in a truck accident, it’s important to take the proper steps in the aftermath to protect your right to compensation. One of the first things you should do is call a truck accident lawyer.
About one-quarter of all deaths caused by truck accidents involve teen drivers. As alarming as this statistic is, it may not necessarily be a surprise, given that teen drivers lack significant driving experience. You can protect your teen by giving him or her ample opportunities to gain driving experience with you in the passenger’s seat. It’s also a good idea to discuss safe driving practices, particularly in close proximity to big rigs. If your teen does become involved in a crash despite these precautions, a truck accident attorney serving Gaithersburg and Rockville can assist you with personal injury claims.
Emphasize the Importance of Distance
One of the issues you can discuss with your teen is the limitations of commercial trucks due to their sheer size and weight. It can be hazardous to drive too closely to the truck, whether your teen is in front of the truck, behind it, or next to it. Explain that trucks require a great deal more distance to slow down and stop as compared to a passenger vehicle, which is why it’s best not to drive too closely to the truck when in front of it. Teens should be aware that if they follow the truck too closely, the truck driver is not likely to know that they’re behind the truck. Finally, a driver following a large truck cannot see the road ahead, and will have no advance warning if there is stopped traffic or other hazards ahead of the truck.
Discuss the Dangers of Blind Spots
New drivers should get into the habit of checking their blind spots each time they switch lanes. This can not only help them avoid merging into another car; it can also remind them that truck drivers have exceptionally large blind spots all around the big rig. It’s advisable to avoid driving alongside a big rig whenever possible. The truck driver may sideswipe the car when changing lanes, unaware that it’s there.
Establish a Zero Tolerance Rule for Distracted Driving
Countless personal injury claims are filed because of distracted drivers. Let your teen know that distracted driving is not acceptable under any circumstances. This will help protect your teen from all types of traffic accidents, including life-threatening collisions with big rigs. Parents might consider installing an app on their teens’ cellphones that prevent them from sending or receiving messages while driving. Even if your teen is a riding as a passenger with another teen driver, they can hold the driver’s cellphone during the trip, so it cannot be a distraction.
A car accident can be upsetting for many reasons. Perhaps your car is the only vehicle you have for getting to and from work. Maybe the other driver is behaving in a belligerent manner. If you have a car accident injury, you might also be in significant physical pain. However, personal injury claims in Gaithersburg necessitate the gathering of all pertinent information relating to your car accident. Should such a circumstance occur, it is important to keep these tips in mind:
Document the Accident
When a car accident happens, contacting the local authorities is critical to the future outcome of your personal injury claim. The responding police officers can record a significant amount of information about your accident, which can prove essential for your car insurance company and personal injury lawyer . As you wait for the authorities to arrive, you should begin documenting the accident as well. Taking photographs of the accident location, car damage, and other relevant facts may serve your claim interests. Getting the personal and insurance information of the other driver is also necessary.
Get Treatment for Your Injuries
Seeing a doctor immediately following your car accident is crucial to both your overall well-being and your financial future. A physician can assess the nature of your injuries and address them. The information he takes down about your condition may also be needed for your personal injury claim. Especially if you suffer extensive injuries that require hospitalization or time away from work, the associated monetary costs may warrant a personal injury claim so that you can recover these losses.
Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer
The other driver and his insurance company may be uncooperative because admitting fault could prove expensive for both of them. As a result, in addition to having to cope with the physical and emotional trauma of your accident, you might also have to deal with conflicting allegations of your role in it. A personal injury lawyer can provide the legal protection you need during such circumstances. Rather than having you engage in frustrating and unproductive discussions with the involved parties, your lawyer can streamline the process and resolve your case as soon as possible so that you can receive your personal injury settlement.
Life following an auto accident can be very confusing, frustrating, and challenging, especially when dealing with insurance companies. If an auto accident victim is having trouble obtaining benefits under his or her uninsured motorist coverage or personal injury protection insurance, then he or she should consult with a personal injury attorney serving Gaithersburg. Auto accident lawyers understand the law regarding personal injury protection insurance, so they can ensure that insurance companies are not taking advantage of their clients.
Personal injury protection insurance is no-fault insurance coverage that compensates auto accident victims for medical expenses, lost wages, and other losses connected with personal injuries from an auto accident. Even though motorists aren’t required to obtain PIP insurance, insurance carriers are legally required to offer that coverage. If a client doesn’t want to purchase PIP coverage, the insurer must have the client sign a waiver stating that PIP was offered and refused. If the victim has uninsured or underinsured coverage, then he or she can collect compensation for personal injuries from their own insurer. A personal injury lawyer can help minimize the stress of working with the insurance company by taking care of the necessary paperwork and working with the insurance company to facilitate payments. A lawyer can also get involved when an insurance carrier refuses payment of full PIP benefits under the argument that the doctor’s billing rates are too high. Our lawyers have successfully handled numerous PIP disputes between clients and their own insurance carriers.
Personal injury claims that stem from auto accidents often involve losses due to whiplash. This is a soft tissue injury that affects the tendons, ligaments, and muscles in your neck. This type of car accident injury develops as a result of the abrupt jerking motions of the neck when the car abruptly stops or starts after an impact. Whiplash can be minor or it may involve significant, chronic pain that leads to lost work time and other financial losses. Talk to your personal injury lawyer about recovering compensation for these losses.
This video explains the symptoms you might experience with whiplashes, such as pain, stiffness, headaches, and muscle spasms. It also discusses why the diagnosis and treatment of whiplash can prove difficult. When filing car accident claims in Gaithersburg, your lawyer can demand compensation for any ongoing medical treatment you may need as a result of whiplash.
A car accident injury can affect your life for years to come. Many victims of auto accidents must cope with chronic pain and ongoing medical treatments, and they often find that they can no longer perform the work they previously did. If you’ve been the victim of a negligent driver, you need the help of an experienced car accident lawyer near Gaithersburg. A personal injury lawyer serving Gaithersburg will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to ensure you receive just compensation. If necessary, your attorney can also file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf.
Not all injuries from a car crash are immediately evident. While you can clearly see lacerations, for example, you might not know that you have internal injuries, such as whiplash. Whiplash, which refers to neck and back pain and stiffness, typically develops within the first two days after a car crash. It sometimes resolves by itself; in other cases, it leads to chronic pain and lost work productivity. It’s a good idea to keep close track of your symptoms in the days and weeks following the crash. Your car accident lawyer will need to know about any additional losses you may have suffered.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Many personal injury claims involve losses caused by a TBI. A TBI may be sustained when the head strikes the dashboard, steering wheel, window or even padded headrest during the collision. A brain injury can cause serious symptoms, such as loss of consciousness, confusion, slurred speech, and seizures. It may also lead to long-term complications, including speech and language impairment, personality and behavioral changes, and memory and other cognitive deficits. Many people who have suffered a TBI find that they can no longer carry out their day-to-day activities.
Lacerations are common injuries among car accident victims. These injuries might be caused by shattering glass, which can cut deep gashes anywhere on the body, including the face.
Let your car accident lawyer know if you’ve been experiencing psychological symptoms following your collision. Many people find that they develop anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following a serious collision. Your Gaithersburg lawyer can demand compensation for the treatment of psychological problems.
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