If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident in Lexington that was no fault of your own, you could recover financial compensation for the injuries and property damage that you have suffered.
As standard procedure, stingy insurance companies and defense law firms will try to offer you less than the full amount of compensation you deserve – and nothing at all, if they can get away with it.
Rest assured that you don’t have to fight for compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and other money damages on your own. Let a Lexington car accident lawyer from our experienced team help you seek justice. We have the Kentucky Courage it takes to stand up to big insurance companies – and win.
The Lexington auto accident attorneys at Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer have extensive experience with helping people injured in auto accidents go after the compensation they need and deserve.
Do You Have a Car Accident Claim?
A claim for compensation following a car collision is usually based on the negligence of another driver. Similar to all negligence claims, a successful claim requires the injured party to prove four things:
- The driver who crashed into you owed you a duty of care. This is relatively straightforward, as all drivers owe others on the road a duty to drive safely.
- The other driver breached or violated this duty, usually by failing to operate in a careful manner or by violating traffic laws.
- The other driver’s breach of duty caused the accident – in other words, the accident would not have happened but for the other driver’s negligence.
- You suffered compensable damages from the accident.
To sum it up, the victim must prove that another driver was primarily responsible for causing the accident and the related physical harm and/or property damage.
Even if you were partially responsible for the accident, you could still recover partial money damages, though they would be reduced according to the percentage of your own fault.
Benefits of Hiring a Lawyer for Your Accident Claim
Working with an experienced Lexington auto accident attorney can not only make the accident claim process go much more smoothly, but a lawyer can also help maximize the compensation you receive from your accident claim.
Hiring a Lexington car accident lawyer after suffering injuries means that someone is fighting to get you the compensation you need and deserve while you focus on your physical and emotional recuperation.
A car crash lawyer thoroughly investigates the accident and collects relevant evidence to develop a persuasive case to demonstrate the liability of the other driver or drivers involved. In particular, a lawyer can work with accident reconstructionists and other experts to help build a strong case.
The benefits of having a car accident lawyer
Our Lexington car accident lawyers have extensive experience negotiating with insurance companies and defense lawyers to try to obtain a settlement that provides you with a full range of compensation. Our attorneys in Lexington know the tricks and tactics insurance companies use to avoid paying what is rightfully due. Hiring a lawyer means that you won’t have to settle for less than the compensation you are entitled to.
If it becomes necessary to pursue your accident claim in court, our Lexington auto accident attorneys will make sure that your claim is timely filed and diligently pursued in court. If you get to trial, we are prepared to aggressively and persuasively advocate on your behalf to seek a verdict or judgment in your favor.
What Compensation Can Be Recovered in a Lexington Car Crash Claim?
If you’ve been harmed in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for any personal injury or property damage that you suffered. Compensation for personal injuries usually consists of economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages compensate you for specific, calculable financial losses. Non-economic damages are more subjective losses arising from the impacts to your quality of life.
Economic damages often include:
- Medical expenses, including hospital stays, doctor’s office visits, surgery, medication, therapy and rehabilitation, and medical equipment
- Lost wages due to work missed during your recovery from your injuries
- Lost earning potential, if your injuries cause temporary or permanent disabilities that prevent you from returning to your pre-accident level of work
Non-economic harms/damages often include:
- Pain and suffering, which is the physical and mental distress caused by your injuries
- Loss of quality of life, which is the anguish caused by accident-related disabilities or disfigurements or by your inability to accomplish daily tasks or participate in activities you previously enjoyed
- Loss of companionship and society, which compensates your spouse and/or your immediate family for the negative effects on the household
If you have suffered property damage in a car accident, such as the damage to your vehicle or belongings inside your vehicle, you may also be entitled to compensation to repair or replace your damaged property.
How Is Fault Determined in a Car Accident?
In Kentucky, the comparative fault system governs negligence claims such as those arising from car accidents. This means that it is necessary to determine whether each party involved in a car accident bears some fault for the accident. If someone is found partially at fault for the accident, their potential compensation would be reduced by the percentage share of the fault.
As a result, determining fault is a critical part of any car accident claim. Evidence will be used to determine the fault of each party involved in the accident.
Evidence that is commonly used to determine fault in car accidents includes:
- Police report – If police are called to the scene of the accident, they will typically prepare a report. The report will detail the officer’s investigation of the accident and may offer the officer’s determination of the cause or causes of the accident. The information in the report could prove useful to your case, but keep in mind that the police do not have the final say on civil liability for a crash.
- Traffic citations or arrests – If a driver is cited for a traffic violation or arrested for a crime, such as reckless driving or DUI, that could also be highly persuasive in assigning fault. Again, moving violations and criminal charges are handled as separate matters from the civil claim.
- Accident scene photos – Photographs can provide important information such as weather and lighting conditions at the time of the accident, traffic controls, skid marks, and the positions of vehicles following the accident. Accident experts can use this information to prepare a reconstruction of what occurred.
- Vehicle damage and repair reports – Damage to the vehicles involved in the accident can also provide insight into how the accident occurred by showing how vehicles were positioned and the speed they were traveling.
- Vehicle data – Some vehicles can provide “black box” data useful to accident reconstruction experts, such as whether and when acceleration or braking was applied.
- Eyewitness statements – Witnesses to an accident can provide critical information, often providing a neutral perspective that can clarify or even contradict the drivers’ accounts.
How Long After a Car Accident Can You Claim Injury?
When you are injured in an accident, you have a limited period of time in which to file a claim in court for compensation for your financial losses. This deadline is called the statute of limitations.
In Kentucky, the statute of limitations for a car accident injury claim is one year. The statute of limitations for a property damage claim is two years. The statute of limitations begins running from the date of the accident.
It is critical to act quickly to assert your claim. Even if you are negotiating a settlement with the other driver, the statute of limitations clock is still running.
Depending on the circumstances, exceptions to the statute of limitations may apply. For example, the limitations period may be paused, or “tolled,” if an unidentified hit-and-run driver crashed into your car and fled the scene. For a minor injured in a car accident, the statute of limitations does not begin to run until you turn 18.
What to Do After a Car Accident to Protect Your Rights
When you are involved in an accident, there are steps you can take in the aftermath to protect your rights and ability to seek compensation for your injuries and losses.
Call 911. Once emergency responders arrive on the scene, stay there until they leave, police tell you that it is okay for you to leave, or EMS transports you to the hospital.
At the scene, collect the contact and insurance information from the other drivers involved in the accident. If police are on the scene, they will likely collect this information in their accident report, which you can later obtain from the police department.
You should also collect the contact information of any eyewitnesses to the accident, in the event they are needed to support your claim for compensation.
If possible and if it is safe to do so, take photographs or videos of the accident scene, including the damage to and positions of the vehicles involved, any skid marks on the road, the traffic controls, and the weather, lighting, and road conditions.
If you decline medical attention at the scene, you should still follow up with a healthcare provider for a thorough medical exam soon after your accident. Injuries can take hours, days, or weeks to start showing pain or other symptoms. Seeking prompt medical treatment can improve your prognosis and reduce your recovery time. It will more firmly establish that your injuries were caused by the car accident.
You should avoid making any admissions of fault or statements to insurance adjusters. Insurance companies use any statements to try to place more blame for the accident on your shoulders and reduce or eliminate the compensation they may have to pay to you.
If It Wasn’t My Fault, What Should I Do Next?
No matter what happens, remain calm and follow the aforementioned steps just as normal. The more evidence you gather, it will be more favorable for your case.
You should hire an experienced and aggressive Lexington car accident attorney who can communicate on your behalf to ensure that your rights and interests are protected.
Common Injury Cases We Handle From Car Accidents
At Morgan. Collins, Yeast & Salyer, we help people in Lexington and throughout Kentucky seek compensation for the injuries that they’ve suffered in a car accident. Serious injuries can cause medical bills and other obligations to pile up.
Some of the common injuries we help clients obtain compensation for following a car accident include:
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue injuries, such as muscle, tendon, and ligament strains, sprains, and tears
- Back and neck injuries
- Joint damage
If you’ve suffered these or other injuries in a vehicle accident that was someone else’s fault, you may be entitled to compensation for your financial losses and other suffering. Our Lexington accident attorneys are ready to fight at the negotiating table and in court to pursue the justice that you deserve.
Talk to a Lexington Car Accident Lawyer Now
If you have been hurt in a car collision, don’t wait another day to start the process of seeking compensation for your ordeal. Contact Morgan, Collins, Yeast & Salyer today to schedule a free consultation with one of our dedicated Lexington car accident attorneys about your legal options.
Contact us by phone or reach out to us online for the Kentucky Courage that you need on your side.