Winning a car accident claim depends largely on the lawyer you hire. Learn about auto crashes and the role of a car accident lawyer in Bridgeport, CT.
In the United States, motor vehicle accidents remain one of the leading causes of unnatural deaths. Unfortunately, car accidents happen when drivers least expect it, and most times, they are avoidable. This is why the crucial factor in most collisions is negligence. A negligent driver fails to uphold their duty of care to other road uses, and as such, causes a traffic accident.
When this happens, it gives rise to an accident claim against such an at-fault driver. An accident victim who desires to pursue a personal injury claim would face many hurdles from insurance companies who do not like to pay compensation. The best way to beat the odds is by hiring a personal injury lawyer.
An attorney is your best option if you desire the maximum compensation. At Jacobs & Wallace, our attorneys have decades of experience helping crash victims in Bridgeport, Connecticut, get the justice they deserve. So contact us immediately after an accident you did not cause.
What Are the Leading Causes of Car Accidents in Connecticut?
The number of fatal accidents in Connecticut keeps increasing. According to a report, in 2019, 254 people died in traffic accidents, and the number went up to 310 in 2020. Another report by the Office of Legislative Research showed that between June 2016 and June 2021, there were 501,320 total crashes in Connecticut. 121,708 resulted in at least one possible suspected minor, suspected serious, or fatal injury.
In addition, 1,120 people died, 5,141 were suspected of having sustained severe injuries, and 47,597 were suspected of having suffered minor injuries during these five years. So what causes these injuries? Below are some of the common causes of vehicle accidents in Bridgeport, Connecticut.
Distracted drivers are one of the leading causes of auto accidents. Distracted driving accidents occur when a driver does an act that takes their focus off the road. The distraction could be mental, visual, or manual.
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol causes automobile accidents. In Connecticut, drunk drivers are people with 0.08% blood alcohol content or above. When it is more than this, the chances of crashing increase as alcohol affects the cognitive ability and reduces reaction time.
Driving over the speed limit causes a motor vehicle collision. Speeding like drunk driving reduces reaction time. As such, you cannot stop in time to avoid a collision.
Also known as following too closely, tailgating occurs when vehicles fail to keep adequate space between each other. It is one of the common causes of rear-end collisions. Drivers can avoid it by keeping at least three seconds of space between themselves.
Disobeying Traffic Rules
Drivers who run red lights also contribute to the crashes in Connecticut. A common example of this is running red lights, failure to maintain lanes, taking turns illegally, etc. A driver who causes an accident by disobeying traffic rules will face a citation from the police in addition to the accident claim the injured person will file.
Other known causes of car accidents in Connecticut are adverse weather conditions, mechanical failure, bad roads, reckless driving, etc.
What Are the Types of Injuries Sustained in Car Accidents?
Car accident victims can suffer minor injuries, severe or catastrophic injuries, or fatal injuries. Injured victims do not survive fatal injuries, hence the name. Those with minor injuries can recover with or without medical treatment. But it is advisable to get medical attention, especially if you desire to pursue a personal injury claim.
Those with severe or catastrophic injuries need medical attention as soon as possible. Not getting treated may aggravate the injury, which in turn may affect your chance of getting fair compensation. So, rather than worrying about medical costs, get treated and then hire an auto accident attorney to help you recover the money spent.
Examples of the common injuries sustained in an automobile accident are:
- Traumatic brain injuries (can result in brain damage)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Nerve and joint damage
- Internal injury or bleeding
- Soft tissue injuries
- Back and neck injuries
Keep in mind that your medical record for treating your injuries is a piece of vital evidence for your compensation claim.
What Are the Steps to Take After an Accident?
What you do after an automobile accident plays a key role in how your Bridgeport personal injury claim would go. As such, our experienced car accident lawyers recommend you do the following:
- Stay at the accident scene and call 911 from your cell phone. Leaving the scene of an accident will affect your auto accident claim as the victim. So wait until the first responders arrive.
- Check for injuries on yourself and others involved in the crash. You may be unable to do this if you're badly injured. If the latter is the case, try not to move and wait for help to arrive.
- Get medical treatment for your injuries, and ensure you stick with the treatment plan prescribed by your doctor.
- Get evidence from the accident scene. Ensure to get photos of the vehicles and injuries, video footage, if any, and get witness statements and their contact information.
- Contact an experienced attorney and get legal advice on the steps to get financial compensation.
How Can I Get Compensation After a Car Accident?
Personal injury victims have two options available to them in their compensation claims. They can either file an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit. The insurance claim is against the responsible party's insurer. The injury lawsuit is before a court of law. It would help if you worked with an experienced lawyer to get maximum compensation in either case.
A lawyer with extensive experience is crucial because insurance companies have a legal team who will not go easy on you. They will do all they can to throw out your claim or offer you a lowball settlement. So, work with a law office that is well-versed in personal injury law.
If your claim or lawsuit succeeds, you can expect to get the following compensation.
It covers the calculable losses suffered in the accident. This includes medical bills, lost wages, property damage, vehicle repair, out-of-pocket expenses, etc. Economic damages are easy to prove as long as you have the receipts of all the transactions.
It covers intangible losses, that is, losses from the accident that have no fixed dollar value. Unlike economic damages, non-economic damages are hard to calculate. However, accident lawyers have a formula for arriving at an amount. This compensation type covers emotional distress, physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, etc.
Unlike economic and non-economic damages, punitive damages are not compensatory. Instead, it punishes the at-fault driver for the injury the victim suffered. However, the fault party must have been grossly negligent for the injured person to get the award. Note that insurance companies do not award punitive damages; only courts do. Hence, you need an experienced trial lawyer to get it.
Is It Worth Getting a Lawyer for a Car Accident?
Often, injury victims shy away from hiring a personal injury law firm to handle their cases. They believe since they are not filing a lawsuit, they can handle negotiations with the insurance company alone. While this is true, we've seen victims get cheated of what they are entitled to as a result. This is because they lack the experience and the legal knowledge lawyers in auto accident practice have.
A lawyer knows when the strength and weaknesses of a car accident claim and will advise you on when to accept or reject a settlement offer. In addition, they will coach you on what to say to avoid hurting your case. Furthermore, an experienced car accident lawyer will investigate your case and get all the pieces of evidence needed to win. Lastly, accident lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don't pay them until they win.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney at Jacobs & Wallace Today!
Jacobs & Wallace is a reputable law firm serving Bridgeport. Our lawyers see you as a real person who suffered an injustice. As such, we will use our decades of experience and extensive legal resources to get you the maximum personal injury compensation. With us, you don't have to worry about legal costs as we work on a contingency fee basis. Contact us today for a free case review.