A car accident lawyer knows that accidents can happen, regardless of how careful of a driver you may be. Below is some straightforward insight that every car accident victim should know. Car accidents have the potential to result in catastrophic personal injury and loss. If you or someone you love was seriously hurt in a car wreck, know that you are not alone. There are legal professionals available to help during a time when it seems like you are unable to get through. Philadelphia car accident lawyers can represent victims to help them obtain the maximum compensation for their medical bills, loss of earnings, and other damages.
Be Prepared: Steps to Take Prior to an Accident
Because accidents are unpredictable, Philadelphia car accident lawyers recommend taking steps to be prepared by carrying the necessary items in your vehicle.
- Maintain a Car Accident Checklist in your vehicle to refer to if you are in an accident
- Have your driver’s license, insurance card, and vehicle registration available in your vehicle
- Store a well-stocked safety kit in your car
Steps To Follow After a Car Accident
Secure the Accident Scene
Car accident lawyers in PA encourage that it’s very important to stay at the scene of the accident to obtain the information you need, especially if you are considering a Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit. Halt your vehicle by pulling over to safety off the road to a safe area. Turn on your hazard lights to help make the accident visible. Turn off your car’s ignition, as this will reduce the chances of a fire. If possible, exit your vehicle and wait for assistance away from the roadside to avoid any injuries from a subsequent crash with your disabled vehicle.
Check For Injury
Check yourself and others for injury. Contact 911 for any medical emergencies. Do not move if you are seriously injured unless your safety is in immediate danger. You should contact the police to get a record of the accident. Be sure to let the police officer know about any suspected injuries.
Collect information and evidence from the other driver and scene, including:
- The driver’s full name, address, driver’s license number, and contact information
- The driver’s insurance company name, policy number, and phone number
- Pictures of visible injuries, damage to both vehicles, street signs, debris in the road, and contributing factors of the accident
Gather as much information and evidence as you can before leaving the scene. A Philadelphia car accident lawyer recommends documenting the following information:
- The registration number and model of all vehicles involved.
- What are the driving conditions? Was the road slick from recent rain or snow?
- Are there missing street signs, are stop lights working properly?
- Is there a pothole or hazards on the road?
- If there are witnesses nearby, ask for their name and contact information.
Never admit fault, even if you think you may be responsible, as there could be contributing variables that you weren’t aware of at the time. Your lawyer, like a car accident attorney Los Angeles residents trust from Glotzer & Leib, LLP, can investigate further to determine liability and how much compensation you are fairly owed based on your injuries, property damage, and financial loss.
Full or Limited Tort: How Pennsylvania Car Insurance Affects Your Compensation following an Accident
Pennsylvania drivers can choose between full or limited tort car insurance. Car accident lawyers in PA explain that these insurance options affect your ability to collect compensation from a Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit.
Limited Tort Car Insurance
Many cost-conscious Pennsylvania drivers view limited tort insurance as an appealing option. Often, the premium cost of limited tort policies is less than full tort insurance policies. However, limited tort insurance significantly limits your ability to seek compensation through a Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit. Drivers with limited tort insurance waive their right to recover compensation for pain and suffering
Injuries following a car accident, such as whiplash, concussions, or neck and back injuries can take weeks or months to fully heal and cause the accident victim to suffer a great deal of pain. These injuries may also affect the person’s ability to enjoy activities they used to enjoy. For example, an avid golf player may no longer be able to play his sport after a debilitating back injury. Other injuries may leave a victim permanently disfigured, or cause traumatic emotional damage, such as PTSD. These damages can’t be viewed on a spreadsheet of medical costs but are certainly real and have a major impact on a victim’s life. Philadelphia car accident lawyers explain that driver who select limited tort insurance give up their rights to pursue compensation for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering.
Car accident lawyers in PA explain that there are a few exceptions that allow drivers to sue for pain and suffering under limited tort insurance. The first exception is if the victim suffers a serious injury. In Pennsylvania, a serious injury is defined as limb loss, permanent disfigurement, serious impairment, or an injury that prevents the victim from returning to work.
Other exceptions allowing a driver to sue for pain and suffering include:
- The at-fault driver was operating the vehicle under the influence
- The driver’s vehicle is registered in another state
- The driver does not carry car insurance
- The driver intended to hurt the victim
Advantages of Full-Tort Insurance
Philadelphia car accident lawyers recommend that drivers select full tort coverage on their car insurance. The savings on car insurance premiums with limited tort cannot compare to the cost of a car accident injury that has life altering impacts.
In many cases, the full effect of car accident injuries can take weeks or months to be fully apparent. Complications are common and can be expensive. Full-tort coverage is the way to protect yourself and your loved ones from the serious financial impacts of a car accident.
Choosing the Best Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer for You
After a serious car accident, car accident lawyers in PA can help injured victims by filing a claim against the insurance company and, if needed, filing a Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit. When choosing which Philadelphia car accident lawyer to hire you learn about the firm and ask questions to determine if the firm is a good fit for your case.
Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer in PA – Questions to Ask
What Steps Should I take to Protect My Car Accident Case?
An experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer can recommend specific steps to help protect your case. These steps may include preserving evidence, staying off social media, or not making statements to insurance companies. The Wieand Law Firm has worked with many car accident clients and works proactively to protect their case and get them the maximum compensation for their injuries.
Are there deadlines I need to be aware of?
A car accident lawyer in PA will be aware of any statutes of limitations or deadlines regarding your Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit. In Pennsylvania, you typically have two years to file a lawsuit after a car accident injury. Ask your lawyer how he will keep you apprised of deadlines during your lawsuit and keep you informed of your case’s status.
Why are You the Best Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer for My Case?
Don’t be afraid to ask a potential attorney why they are a good fit for your case. This will give the lawyer an opportunity to explain their credentials and their plan for representing you. Choosing the right car accident lawyer in PA for your case will have a big impact on whether you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries. Selecting an experienced personal injury attorneys Philadelphia trusts at the Wieand Law Firm can help you feel confident that your case is in good hands.
What Damages Can I Recover?
Every Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit is different, and the damages can vary greatly among cases. A Philadelphia car accident lawyer should be able to listen to your situation and outline the damages that you may be entitled to based on the accident and your injuries.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire Your Law Firm?
It’s crucial to understand the fees involved when hiring a Philadelphia car accident lawyer. The lawyers at the Wieand Law Firm work on a contingency fee basis for these types of cases. This means that client pay no upfront costs, and attorney’s fees are collected as a portion of the final settlement or verdict that they win for your case. Our car accident lawyers in PA offer a free consultation to evaluate your case and will thoroughly review the contingence fee agreement with you to answer any questions you may have.
Best Ways to Recover Damages After a Car Wreck
Filing a claim or initiating a Pennsylvania car accident lawsuit after an accident can be both complicating and time-consuming. However, car accident lawyers in PA have some helpful tips to make the process more manageable. By following this advice, you may be more likely to recover the maximum compensation for the damages you suffered.
Document Accident Details
Accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. A serious accident with injuries can be overwhelming as you try to soak in and understand what has occurred. It’s crucial to document events and your insight to what happened while everything is fresh in your memory. You can write down information in a notepad, take pictures, or create a voice memo to help document the accident.
- Weather conditions
- Position of skid marks
- Street names
- Signage or traffic light colors
Follow Through with Medical Care for Your Injuries
In 2020, 43% of Pennsylvania motor vehicle accidents resulted in injuries. Seeking medical care after an accident is crucial. Adrenaline can initially mask injuries, and a full workup is important to make sure that any injuries from the accident are treated and documented.
Following the advice and follow-up care instructions from your physician is important for several reasons. First, it will help you feel better sooner. Second, adhering to medical care instructions can build a more robust insurance claim. An insurance company will be more apt to take your injury claim seriously if you can demonstrate that your injuries required care and that you closely followed the treatment plan.
Watch What You Say
Insurance companies will look for inconsistencies in your statements and use them against you to deny or diminish the value of your claim. The best way to avoid this is to consult with a Philadelphia car accident lawyer prior to making any statements to an insurance company. Your lawyer may advise to notify the at-fault’s driver of the accident via a written letter that includes basic accident details only. Afterwards, your attorney can handle communication with the insurance company.
Car accident lawyers in PA recommend avoiding social media following an accident. Insurance companies are notorious for using evidence from social media to deny or reduce claims. Talk with the attorneys at the Wieand Law Firm about the precautions you should take following social media use after a car accident.
How Much is My Car Accident Claim Worth?
In 2021, the Insurance Information Institute (III) listed the average value of a car accident claim with bodily injury as $22,734. However, this means very little when it comes to how much your personal claim is worth. The reality is that there is no “average” claim when dealing with the unique, specific circumstances of an individual accident. At the Wieand Law Firm, we understand that your accident affects you, as an individual, in different ways than it may have affected another person. Therefore, we take a holistic view of each accident and client to understand the true damages.
Our car accident lawyers in PA will work with your medical professionals, economists, accident reconstructionist, and other experts as needed to support your claim and seek the best possible results. We consider all the following when evaluating the type of damages in a car accident:
- Medical expenses, rehabilitation, supplies, medication, and medical travel costs.
- Loss of income from missed work
- Loss of future income from inability to return to work
- Emotional trauma, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life
- Property damage from the accident
Each of the above factors should be carefully considered when assigning a value to your claim. While physical and emotional recovery after an accident is paramount, we understand that medical bills will start to accumulate and demand your attention. Car accident lawyers in PA can help negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance companies or pursue a PA car accident lawsuit to help you get the money you deserve.
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Contact Car Accident Lawyers in PA at the Wieand Law Firm
The Wieand Law Firm, LLC represent victims who have been seriously injured in a Pennsylvania auto accident. A Philadelphia car accident lawyer at our firm offers a free, no obligation case evaluation to discuss your situation and how we may be able to help.
Because we believe that all injured victims should have access to qualified, experienced legal representation from a car accident lawyers in PA, we offer our services on a contingence fee basis. This means that you can focus on recovery without worrying about paying costly, hourly lawyer fees. We only earn a fee if we win money for your claim. Call 215-666-7777 or sent us message via the online form to connect directly to an attorney.