When you are injured in an automobile accident, you might wonder how to pay the expenses your insurance does not cover. If the crash was not your fault, the driver who caused it is responsible for your losses.
Although motor vehicle collisions happen all the time, submitting a claim and getting appropriate compensation can be a hassle. Working with a local injury attorney could reduce stress, allow you to focus on your recovery, and result in a substantially more favorable settlement than you could achieve alone.
Contact a Reno auto accident lawyer at Shook & Stone if you suffered injuries in a car, truck, bus, motorcycle, bicycle, or pedestrian crash. Our seasoned legal professionals could investigate the incident, identify all parties with potential liability, and ensure you receive fair compensation for your accident-related losses.
The At-Fault Driver Is Responsible for Damages
Nevada adheres to the traditional system in which the driver who caused the crash is responsible for paying the damages of other involved parties. Everyone who registers a vehicle in Nevada must have liability insurance coverage, and an at-fault driver’s insurer covers the damages up to the policy limits.
If an at-fault driver is uninsured or their policy limits are insufficient to cover an injured person’s losses, an injured driver could turn to their uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. If the injured person does not have this coverage, there could be other sources of insurance that could pay their damages.
A diligent Reno auto accident attorney could investigate the wreck to determine whether others might have liability. In some cases, the at-fault driver’s employer could be liable. The company might have liability if a taxi, Uber, or other rideshare vehicle was involved. A vehicle manufacturer could be responsible if a mechanical problem contributed to the accident.
Comparative Negligence Can Impact Compensation
Accidents are sometimes clearly the fault of one driver, but often, several factors combined lead to a crash. An injured driver or pedestrian might be partially responsible for the accident. In that case, Nevada Revised Statutes § 41.141 limits their damages.
The law says an injured person more than 50 percent responsible for a wreck cannot collect damages. When the driver or pedestrian contributed to the incident but is not primarily responsible, they can collect the portion of their losses attributable to others’ conduct.
Negotiations over allocating responsibility are often fierce. An experienced auto collision lawyer in Reno could ensure a driver bears no more than their fair share of the blame.
Protecting Yourself After an Accident
Getting into a crash is always a shock, and in the immediate aftermath, people react instinctively. Sometimes, their responses after an accident have a negative impact later when they claim damages. Keeping a few basic principles in mind can help preserve and strengthen an accident claim.
People involved in a crash often speak with each other and speculate about how the accident occurred. Their words can be used against them later. While anyone who is able should check on the occupants of other vehicles, it is best not to converse with other involved parties about what happened.
Call Emergency Personnel
Report the accident to the police and request an ambulance if anyone is injured. A police report establishes the time and place of the crash and could provide credible evidence of fault. Drivers should provide their identification and answer basic questions but avoid volunteering information or assuming responsibility if possible.
Get a Medical Evaluation
Seeking medical care as soon as possible after any kind of wreck is critical. If ambulance transportation is offered, it is wise to accept. If an ambulance is unavailable, seek a ride to a hospital or urgent care center as soon as possible. Serious injuries often do not produce symptoms immediately, and a prompt examination is necessary to ensure safety.
In addition, the medical record is evidence linking any injuries to the accident. A delay in seeking treatment allows the at-fault driver’s insurer an opportunity to question whether an injury is real.
Call a Lawyer
Some people choose to handle an auto accident claim by themselves. Engaging a Reno motor vehicle crash attorney is not necessary, but it is helpful and cost-effective. A skilled legal professional could:
- File a lawsuit
- Handle communication with the insurance companies
- Protect a driver’s rights in a crash investigation
- Identify other potentially responsible parties
- Negotiate a favorable settlement
- Prepare a case for trial if necessary
Consult a Reno Auto Accident Attorney After a Crash
Motor vehicle wrecks can cause severe injuries; even a relatively minor crash could cause injuries requiring substantial recovery time. The party responsible for the collision must provide compensation for the harm they caused.
Working with a Reno auto accident lawyer lets you focus on healing from your injuries while ensuring you do not leave money on the table. Call Shook & Stone immediately after an accident to get a qualified attorney working for you.