Vehicle Accident Lawyers Respond: Can I Sue After A Car Accident?
In some situations, auto accident litigation may be relatively simple. The cases become more complicated, however, when substantial injuries are involved and there are questionable insurance coverage limits on the other vehicle.
In the event of limited coverage, some attorneys suggest accepting a settlement. However, there are certain cases that might have to be taken to court. At the Bernard Law Group, we explore every avenue of recovery.
When car accidents involve intricate factors, working with a professional who is well acquainted with the law might offer victims a great deal of advantage. Most often, Seattle car attorneys encounter at least one of the four extraordinary circumstances listed below in the most intricate car accident cases. If you were injured in a car accident in Seattle and you have encountered one of the situations below, you might benefit from having a deeper understanding of how they might impact your car accident litigation in the state of Washington.
Most Common Extraordinary Circumstance: Leased Car Accident
Both the operator of the at-fault vehicle and the owner of that vehicle are responsible for anyone injured in an auto accident. If the operator was driving the vehicle with permission, the owners are responsible for the negligence of that person. This is extremely important when the vehicle at fault is leased.
Because so many leased vehicles are on the roads today, it is imperative that an experienced attorney goes beyond the name on the registration to determine the exact owner of the vehicle. Typically the registration of a leased car bears the name of the party who’s renting the vehicle, also known as the lessee, but the actual owner of the vehicle, known as the lessor, is, in most cases, a large company that is required by law to carry unlimited insurance coverage.
When a vehicle accident lawyer with no experience in these cases fails to uncover the actual ownership of the at-fault vehicle, the injured victim is never given an opportunity to recover damages via that additional insurance coverage. It is of extreme importance for the success of your litigation to make sure that these details are thoroughly investigated.
Second Most Common Extraordinary Circumstance: Business Vehicles
Nowadays, it is commonplace to see vehicles displaying company names and brands. However, it is not always easy to identify a business vehicle if it is not sporting its logo on its exterior. If a car accident is caused by a business vehicle that bears no business name, victims are often left unaware that the third party involved is a large company.
Precisely because there is often no way to determine simply by looking at a car or truck that is is, in fact, being operated for a business purpose, attorneys must take part in an in-depth investigation to find out if the vehicle in question was used for business purposes. Why does this matter, you might ask yourself.
It matters because a vehicle that is operated by an employee during the course of his or her employment is also the responsibility of the employer. If the employee was negligent with the vehicle while on the clock, the employer might also be held responsible. For victims of car accidents caused by business vehicles, it is important to verify whether the employer has additional liability coverage that would far exceed that of the driver. Especially if injuries were serious. Additionally, employers may also carry an “excess” insurance policy.
Third Most Common Extraordinary Circumstance: Equipment Or Road Defects
Many car accidents in Seattle happen because of both highway or auto equipment defects.
When expert attorneys are looking into helping a victim, they never rule out these issues, as they might be a factor in an accident.
Some of the defects commonly seen by attorneys include improper road or motor design, irregular maintenance, shoddy construction, insufficient signage, bad lighting, low visibility, etc.
An expert attorney can also help the victim by identifying other issues such as passing lanes that aren’t visible due to improper maintenance as well as other debris or road issues that might have impaired the driver’s visibility.
Poorly placed utility poles, insufficiently trimmed trees and bushes, and other road or sidewalk items may also obstruct the driver’s vision.
Fourth Most Common Extraordinary Circumstance: The Seatbelt Defense
Many at-fault drivers will attempt to use the so-called seatbelt defense to attempt to place the blame for the accident’s injuries on the plaintiff. The reality is that attorneys who are experienced in these kinds of liability cases have the expertise necessary to perform a thorough investigation, obtain all necessary police records, talk to witnesses, and look into the matter closely so that the victim’s rights are upheld.
The reality is that seatbelts are, indeed, an important safety feature and will often prevent serious and even deadly injuries. However, not all personal injuries are prevented by the use of seatbelts alone. As we have seen in many cases over the past years, many accident-related injuries are often caused due to safety features such as airbags and seatbelts.
Having an expert car accident attorney who is aware of this fact on your side can help you look into this matter during your litigation process.
Experienced Lawyers Are a Must
In cases involving vehicular accidents, a routine investigation must be completed. Police records must be obtained, along with witness interviews and photographs of the accident scene and resulting damage. All insurance companies must be contacted promptly to determine available coverage limits. However, victims should never record a statement or sign any document for the insurance company of the at-fault driver before talking to an attorney.
When an auto accident attorney contacts the insurance company and deals with them directly, the insurance adjuster will often be prevented from communicating directly with the victim. As the victim is given time and space to heal from his or her injuries, the attorney makes sure that large corporations aren’t trying to take advantage of them. But in some cases, at-fault drivers do not have insurance coverage. If that is your case, you might make your claim with your insurance company quickly. Taking advantage of your uninsured motorist coverage means that you should never sit on your case for long.
Hurt In A Car Accident In Seattle? Here’s Why You Should Hire The Attorneys At the Bernard Law Group
Often the success of a case rest on the experience of the attorneys involved as well as their willingness to pursue a satisfactory outcome, no matter what.
At the Bernard Law Group, our lawyers have a proven track records in the areas of personal injury, products liability, construction accidents, highway/roadway design defects, drug product litigation, aviation accidents or other areas of negligence.
We explore every possible avenue of recovery for our clients, especially in cases where injuries are substantial and the insurance coverage is inadequate. We understand your need to replace lost wages and future income, to repair the damage to your car, to pay for your medical and rehabilitative expenses, and to be compensated for pain and suffering. We bring that expertise to bear for each of our clients and investigate all areas of recovery to the fullest extent.