Auto Accident Lawsuits & Why You Need an Attorney

You could have been on your way to work or just taking a Sunday drive when you are in a devastating wreck that is not your fault. You many think that most people are too quick to sue but in many cases, you should. You have to recover expenses from lost wages, pain and suffering and damage to your vehicle. Here are the reasons for five common lawsuits filed after auto accidents:

  • Driver Error: This is the most common cause of any kind of wreck. According to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (www.nhtsa.dot.gov) and the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, nearly 80 percent of car crashes are caused by driver inattention.
  • This could be due to several factors:
    1. Failure to yield
    2. Following too closely behind the vehicle
    3. Speeding
    4. Running traffic lights
    5. Passing erroneously

When the wreck is caused by someone else, you are entitled to recover these damages.

  • Driver Distractions: Cell phones have become a necessity for most people and unfortunately, most people can stop talking and texting even when they are driving. This distraction has caused so many wrecks that the state of Tennessee has outlawed texting and driving. California has also recently put a law in place that went effective Jan 1, 2009 banning cell phone use while driving except with the use of a hands free device, and banning texting while driving all together
  • The Road Itself: Sometimes the engineers don’t get it right. They design roads with dangerous curves when there may have been a better way. Or the dangerous curves sneak up on you without warning. Many auto accident victims and their families have successfully sued cities and states for faulty road design.
  • Automobile defects: Unfortunately it took several deaths for Ford Motor Company to realize a defect was causing their rollovers. Many states settled including Oregon, which said SUV manufacturers could be violating consumer protection laws (http://www.doj.state.or.us/releases/2003/rel042403c.shtml).
  • Intoxicated Drivers: Auto accident cause by drunk driver is the most common and perhaps the most traffic reason for an automobile accident. When someone gets behind the wheel of a car under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they take everyone’s lives into their own hands.

Why do you need an attorney if you are in an auto accident?

We all like to think that everyone will do the right thing but that doesn’t always happen. The person who crashed into may say they have insurance and can take care of your medical expenses and damages. But will they? And do they really have insurance? According to the Insurance Information Institute, about 13.8 of all drivers on the road are uninsured. Which means a fair number of car accident with no insurance occur. If they don’t have insurance, who is going to pay for your expenses? You may have to file a lawsuit after car accident to get the damages owed.

The best way to make sure you are protected even during what seems to be a common auto accident is to seek the advice of an attorney. An attorney can negotiate with the insurance company for a fair structured settlement if the other driver was insured. If the other driver was not insured, you may have to sue and collecting compensation off their assets.

If they could not afford car insurance, they likely can not afford to pay a settlement. But if you have a court ruling, if the other driver ever does has any money or other assets, you will be entitled to them to satisfy your claim.


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