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Car Accident Lawyer Serving Waynesville, NC

Car Accident Lawyer Serving Waynesville, NC

Waynesville Auto Accident Attorneys

Car accidents happen in Waynesville and all over western North Carolina every day. Some of these accidents are extremely serious and leave accident victims with severe injuries.

Car accident injuries are not only painful and debilitating, but they’re also very costly to treat. Accident victims are left to pay for these expenses, often at a time when their injuries have left them unable to work.

These are just two of the many ways an accident turns the victim’s life upside down, but there is help. When car crash victims suffer severe injuries and other losses, they can file a personal injury claim to seek compensation. That compensation can help pay for the cost of treatment, make up lost income, cover property damage, and help the accident victim better deal with their injuries.

If you’ve been hurt in a car crash that was someone else’s fault, you should speak to a personal injury lawyer in Waynesville, NC, who can help you pursue the total compensation you may be entitled to.

Contact The Elmore and Smith Law Firm, PC, for a free consultation.

How Our Waynesville Accident Injury Lawyers Can Help You

The Role of Our Accident Injury Attorneys in Waynesville

Insurance companies are notorious for proposing inadequate settlements to accident victims that do not fully account for the cost of their injuries and associated losses. They aim to minimize claim payouts in order to maximize their profits.

When a lawyer represents accident victims, they can interface with the insurance company on behalf of the injured party. An attorney understands how to ensure that an insurance company provides a just and equitable settlement, circumventing any potential tactics employed by these corporations.

Our legal team is ready to meticulously investigate the actual cause of the collision and evaluate the full extent of your losses. They will determine this value based on various factors such as time lost from work, accrued medical expenses, and the degree of pain and suffering endured due to the accident, among others. Furthermore, they will fortify your case with compelling evidence and sound legal argumentation substantiating these compensation claims.

Our attorneys manage all the intricate tasks associated with a claim, enabling you to prioritize your recovery. This may encompass filing a claim, ensuring compliance with crucial deadlines, consulting with industry experts, negotiating with insurance providers, and much more.

What Types of Compensation can be in a Car Accident Claim

In a car accident claim, compensatory damages are the most frequently sought-after type of damages. These damages are intended to recompense you for any losses sustained due to the accident. The compensation can cover:

  1. Medical expenses: This includes emergency transportation, surgical procedures, rehabilitation, therapy, and other related costs.
  2. Lost income: This involves lost wages, salaries, bonuses, and benefits.
  3. Loss of future earning capacity: If the injuries prevent you from earning the same income as before the accident.
  4. Property damage: This covers the cost to repair or replace your vehicle.
  5. Permanent injury and loss of limbs.
  6. Pain and suffering.
  7. Emotional distress.
  8. Loss of consortium.
  9. Loss of enjoyment of life.

In the event that the case proceeds to court without a settlement, the amount of compensation you deserve will be determined by a judge or jury. Your attorney can present evidence of the expenses you have already incurred, as well as future projected costs, to establish the amount of compensation that should be awarded to you.

What You Need to Know About Dealing with Insurance Companies

You should always report the accident to your insurance company immediately. If someone else was at fault for the accident, you may have to deal with the other driver’s insurance company. This is much more challenging than it sounds.

The insurance company is not on your side. They are not looking out for your best interests. Instead, they are looking to maximize their profits as much as possible. To do that, they want to pay as little as they can on your claim – and ideally, nothing if they can get away with it. Don’t let them.

Here are some things to keep in mind when dealing with the insurance company:

  • An insurance adjuster from the at-fault party’s insurance company will likely contact you after the accident. Some don’t even wait until you get home from the hospital. They want to talk to you as soon as possible when you aren’t even aware of the full extent of your injuries. They may try to pressure you into signing a release and possibly even accepting an offer that will not begin to cover the total cost of your injuries.
  • The insurance company may even trick you into accepting fault for the accident. This can give them a reason to deny your claim or offer a meager settlement. The insurance company will hold anything you say against you, and they’ll take your words out of context and twist them for their purposes.
  • To hold your statements against you in the future, the insurance company may also ask you for a recorded message. Never provide this to any insurance company. You are not obligated to, and it can only hurt your case.
  • The insurance company may also ask you to sign a release for your medical records. You should never sign these releases, either. When the insurance company has access to your medical records, they’ll comb through them to find anything that may indicate you suffered from specific injuries or conditions before the accident. They’ll use this information to claim your injuries aren’t due to the accident.
  • Speaking to any insurance company after an accident can easily ruin your case if you don’t understand your rights and what you are legally obligated to provide. This is one of the main reasons it’s so important to speak to a Waynesville car accident lawyer before speaking to any insurance adjuster or representative.

Understanding Fault Laws in North Carolina

North Carolina is an at-fault, or tort, auto insurance state. This means that injured individuals will have to go through the at-fault party’s insurance company to claim compensation for injuries in a crash. This differs from some other no-fault states, meaning each injured party goes through their own insurance for compensation.

This seems pretty straightforward, but it does become complicated, particularly when more than two vehicles are involved. Each of the liable driver’s insurance companies is responsible for compensating for the portion of the accident the driver was responsible for. Injured parties must establish fault, collect evidence to prove it, and determine the extent of fault each party is responsible for.

Contributory negligence is another complicated aspect of establishing fault in a North Carolina car accident. Under the state’s contributory negligence laws, when an accident victim is even 1% at fault for the accident, they are barred from receiving any compensation for their injuries.

What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Car Accident in Waynesville, NC

The moments immediately following a car accident are scary and confusing. Accident victims are dealing with injuries. Due to the chaos that ensues after a car accident, drivers must know the proper steps to take after an accident.

The first step is to stop and report the accident if there are injuries or property damage. This is the law in North Carolina, and failing to do so could hurt your case later on. North Carolina law also requires you to provide reasonable assistance to anyone injured, such as calling for medical help. If possible, move all vehicles out of the way of traffic so they don’t block the road and cause a secondary accident.

If you need emergency medical assistance, do not refuse it. Now is not the time to act tough. Contact Elmore and Smith Law Firm, PC today!

If you can remain on the scene, the next step is to exchange information with the other drivers. You should exchange your names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, license plate numbers, and insurance information. Consider simply using your phone to take pictures of their documents. While collecting data, also get the names and contact information of anyone who witnessed the accident.

While waiting for the police, take as many pictures as you can, if possible. Be sure to take photos of any injuries, property damage to any vehicle, and any other essential elements of the accident scene. Make sure you take pictures of anything that could indicate how the accident happened, such as skid marks on the road.

Once the police have arrived and taken your statement, you’ve collected all the information you need, and you’ve taken pictures, you must seek medical treatment. This step is necessary in emergencies even before the other steps are completed. Seeking medical attention is essential not only for your health but for your accident claim, too.

After your injuries have been treated and stabilized, you should contact our car accident lawyers in Waynesville as soon as possible.

Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Claims in NC

The term “statute of limitations” refers to the legal deadline for filing a car accident claim. Claims lodged beyond this period are typically ineligible for compensation, depriving accident victims of their rights to seek redress.

In North Carolina, the time limit for initiating a car accident lawsuit is three years from the accident date.

Commencing your car accident claim at the earliest opportunity, despite the seemingly ample duration of three years is crucial. Essential evidence may be lost, witnesses may become unavailable, their recollections may become blurred, and procuring other vital information could prove challenging as time passes. Hence, it is highly advisable to allow your attorney to start working on your case as soon as feasible to optimize the chances of a favorable outcome.

Common Car Accident Injuries

A person can sustain just about any injury in a car crash. Some injuries seen after auto accidents are more common than others. These include:

  • Traumatic brain injuries, including concussions, internal bleeding, skull fractures, and lacerations
  • Neck and back injuries, including whiplash, herniated discs, spinal cord damage, sprains, and strains
  • Burn injuries that require skin grafts and result in scarring
  • Soft tissue injuries in which muscles, tendons, and ligaments are stretched or torn
  • Spinal cord injuries, including herniated discs and paralysis
  • Broken bones

These injuries are often debilitating and can keep a person from working for months, or even years, after the accident. Some accident victims, unfortunately, never fully recover from their injuries.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in Waynesville

Driver negligence is the most common cause of car accidents in Waynesville. Negligence takes many forms. Some of the most common causes of car accidents due to negligence include:

  • Aggressive or reckless driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Fatigued driving
  • Driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol
  • Failure to obey traffic signs or signals
  • Failure to yield the right of way
  • Speeding or driving too fast for the conditions
  • Tailgating
  • Poor road conditions

These are just a few of the most common causes of car accidents in North Carolina.

Talk to Our Waynesville Auto Accident Attorney Now

If you’ve been injured in a car accident that was someone else’s fault, don’t take chances with your injury claim. Trust the experienced car accident lawyers in Waynesville.

At The Elmore and Smith Law Firm, PC, we’re passionate about seeking the total amount of compensation accident victims deserve. In car accident cases, it seems everyone is working against you. We’ll not only work with you, but we’ll fight for you and ensure your rights are upheld throughout the entire process.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help. The consultation is free and comes with no obligations.