By far the most common grounds cited for personal injury litigation across the United States, car accidents account for millions of dollars in damages year. Even if you have enough insurance to cover the financial hit from such an incident, such a claim can do nothing to address the physical and psychological pain auto accidents can result in.
Fortunately, a Bellevue car accident lawyer may be able to help you make up the difference by pursuing a civil lawsuit against or private settlement from the party responsible for your wreck. By working to collect exhaustive evidence of negligence and accurately valuating both economic and non-economic forms of harm, a seasoned personal injury attorney could provide irreplaceable assistance getting the most out of your civil claim.
With very few exceptions, anyone who wants to hold someone else financially accountable for harm they caused through a car crash must prove that the allegedly at-fault driver was legally negligent in some way. In a nutshell, this entails demonstrating through “a preponderance of available evidence” that the defendant breached the responsibility of reasonable care all drivers owe to each other through some reckless or careless act, and that this irresponsible behavior directly caused the incident that led to the injured party’s compensable damages.
In many situations, negligence in car accident cases takes the form of a traffic violation—for example, a driver who T-bones another car because they ran a red light could be considered negligent, as their reckless breach of their duty of care directly led to an accident. Conversely, other forms of negligence like distracted driving may be a bit more subjective, and there may not be a police citation available to help demonstrate fault.
Either way, a Bellevue car accident attorney could work on a plaintiff’s behalf to prove fault for a wreck by collecting, preserving, and effectively presenting evidence like police reports, security camera footage, eyewitness testimony, and more. If necessary, legal counsel could also help contest allegations of comparative negligence leveled against an injured plaintiff, as they could lead to a significant reduction in recoverable damages.
Both economic and non-economic damages may be recoverable following a car accident in Bellevue, including but not limited to:
However, as with any personal injury case, a statute of limitations applies to car accident claims that could impede a plaintiff’s ability to recover compensation if they wait too long to file suit. According to Revised Code of Washington §4.16.080, a prospective plaintiff in Bellevue must start the filing process for a car accident claim—or have a lawyer do so for them—within three years of when they first discovered their accident-related injuries.
In the wake of any serious auto accident, it is important to seek professional medical attention as soon as possible to ensure you did not suffer any life-threatening harm. Once you have a clear picture of your overall condition, your next priority should be contacting legal counsel to discuss whether civil litigation may be warranted.
A knowledgeable Bellevue car accident lawyer could help determine whether you have grounds to file a suit and, if so, work tirelessly to make the most of your claim. Call today to learn more.