Being injured in a car wreck can send your life into a tailspin. Physical injuries, property damage and even mental trauma stemming from the wreck may affect you for months afterward. Filing a lawsuit against the negligent party can help you recover compensation for medical bills and lost wages, but since every case is unique, you may want to be aware of a few factors that can affect how quickly you receive any compensation.
- Insurance Company Interference
When a driver is at fault for an accident, his or her insurance company may try to downplay the negligence or extent of your injuries. They may also offer you a reduced amount for your totaled vehicle or coax you to settle for an amount that is far less than what your claim is actually worth. While most car accident settlements usually take a few months to resolve, insurance company interference may cause it to drag on longer.
- Questions of Liability
When a car accident occurs, one of the first questions that usually arises is who was at fault. This may be difficult to prove in some cases, and one of the best ways to do so is to retrieve police and witness reports to submit to your attorney. If you are found to be partially at fault for the accident, you may receive a reduced amount that subtracts that percentage from the value of your damages.
- No-Fault Laws
If you live in a state that operates under no-fault car insurance laws, then your ability to sue for damages may be somewhat limited. In these states, each driver is covered under his or her own insurance and requires what is called Personal Injury Protection. In the event of an accident, this coverage pays for your medical bills and your ability to file a lawsuit may not be possible. States that operate under no-fault laws do so to reduce frivolous car accident claims. Your attorney can advise you on how to proceed if you reside in a no-fault state.
- The Extent of Resulting Damages
When a car accident happens, you may have only a few injuries, those that are not apparent until days or weeks later, or catastrophic physical trauma that will change your life forever. In most cases, the more damages you incurred, the greater the value of your case and the longer it may take to resolve it in court.
When you are injured in a car accident, you may not know where to turn for assistance in the aftermath, but help is available.