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motor vehicle accident attorney near me

March 21, 2024

Finding the Best Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney Near Me

Getting into a car accident can be a scary and overwhelming experience. Even minor fender benders can cause injuries and property damage that lead to insurance claims, medical bills, missed work, and legal issues. That’s why it’s important to know your options and legal rights if you’ve been in an auto collision. This article will help you find the best motor vehicle accident attorney near you so you can get the compensation you deserve.

Why You May Need an Attorney After a Car Crash

I know, hiring a lawyer sounds like overkill if your crash seems minor. But here are some good reasons to have a professional on your side:

  • Maximize compensation – Attorneys ensure you get full and fair payment for both economic and non-economic damages. This can mean 10 times more money in your pocket.
  • Handle negotiations – Your lawyer deals with insurance companies so you can focus on recovery not paperwork.
  • Expertise navigating the law – There are complex legal rules like statutes of limitations that impact your rights and ability to file a claim.
  • Level the playing field – Insurance carriers have teams of adjusters and lawyers. You need someone experienced fighting for your best interests.

Trust me, the insurance company won’t tell you what benefits you’re legally entitled to or voluntarily pay your medical bills. Their goal is minimizing payouts, not helping you.

Finding the Best Car Accident Lawyer

Not all attorneys are equal when it comes to winning compensation for auto accident injuries and damages. When researching local car crash lawyers, you want to look for:
Specialization – Find someone who focuses specifically on vehicle injury cases, not a general practice lawyer. Auto insurance claims are a niche area of law that calls for niche expertise.
Resources – Make sure the law firm has the financial resources to undertake expensive litigation if necessary. This shows the lawyer has confidence in the strength of your case.
Verdicts & Settlements – Check out the recent case results your attorney has delivered for past clients. This track record shows their ability to get results.
Client Reviews – Client testimonials shed light on how an attorney treats their clients and their law firm’s customer service. This gives you insight into their communication skills and bedside manner.
The easiest way to find lawyers strong in these areas is checking online legal directories like Avvo, LawInfo, and FindLaw. These sites let you research backgrounds, credentials, case results, and client reviews to identify the best car accident representation near you.

Questions to Ask a Prospective Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney

Once you’ve identified some top contenders, set up free case evaluations to ask further questions like:

  • How many years have you practiced personal injury law?
  • What percentage of your caseload focuses on motor vehicle accidents?
  • What types of damages can I seek compensation for?
  • Who in your office will be handling most of my case?
  • What communication can I expect in regards to my case’s progress?

Pay attention not only to the answers they give but also how much time they take explaining legal concepts in plain English. You want an attorney who is patient, understanding, and takes time making sure you grasp how the claims process works.

Maximizing Compensation in an Auto Injury Claim

Pursuing fair payment for your injuries and losses requires understanding key legal concepts. Here’s a quick primer on factors that determine settlement value:

Economic vs Non-Economic Damages

There are two broad categories of accident injury compensation:
Economic damages cover quantifiable monetary losses like:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income from missed work
  • Loss of future earnings capacity
  • Costs for household services you can no longer perform
  • Repair or replacement costs for damaged property

Non-economic damages relate to intangible injuries like:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Disfigurement or physical impairment
  • Emotional distress

Your attorney will fight to recover full, fair payment for all accident related expenses and impacts.

Contributory Negligence vs Comparative Fault

Even if another driver caused your accident, their insurance carrier will look for ways to pin partial blame on you to reduce payouts. This is done by citing:

  • Failure to yield right of way
  • Ignoring traffic signs or signals
  • Driving aggressively or recklessly
  • Being under the influence of alcohol or drugs

States follow different rules regarding how your actions before an accident impact potential settlements:
Contributory negligence – A few states bar recovery if you bear any fault at all. So even 1% of blame means you get $0 in compensation.
Comparative fault – Most states reduce payouts based on degree of fault. So 20% contributory negligence equals 20% less compensation.
An experienced attorney knows how to fight questionable allegations of partial fault and maximize recovery regardless of these legal nuances.

Insurance Policy Limits

The driver who hit you likely has auto liability insurance with defined maximum payouts that cap potential settlements. Typical caps are:

  • $25,000 per injured person/$50,000 per accident bodily injury liability
  • $10,000 property damage liability

More serious crashes with catastrophic injuries easily exceed basic caps. This is why underinsured and uninsured motorist coverage is so important on your own policy. Stacking multiple insurance policies also boosts available payout limits.
An adept car accident lawyer knows how to identify and pursue extra insurance sources when needed to fully cover your economic and non-economic damages.

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