Riverside Car Accident Lawyer
Any time you drive a car, you risk getting into an accident. Most people don’t consider the possibility every time they get in their cars, but the truth is that no matter how safely you drive and how careful you may be, you cannot always predict what another motorist is going to do or when an accident is going to happen.
Getting in a car accident is a big change in your plans for the day and may continue to affect your life for days, weeks, or months into the future. Your car is damaged. You have been injured. You are dealing with sudden life changes that you did not expect. It’s an unwelcome interruption and the strain can be overwhelming.
The Riverside car accident attorneys at Ellis Law know that this is a time when you are going through a lot and need help from someone you can count on to fight hard on your behalf.
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Why Ellis Law Is the Firm You Can Trust
We know this is about your life and we take our responsibility seriously.
- Our work ethic and results have earned respect from our peers and our community – we go the extra mile to get you the best recovery.
- Our representation is client-centered and you can access us anytime you need us.
- Our goal is to win for you – we have a 99% client success rate over 25 years.
How a Car Accident Attorney Improves Your Chances of a Successful Claim
You might be tempted to try and handle your claim by yourself to save the money you would otherwise pay an attorney. However, when the insurance companies begin hounding you about settling, making it hard to get the treatment you need, and generally treating you like you are the bad guy, you may come to realize just how beneficial it can be to let everyone know that you have an attorney who will be taking over.
- An attorney will handle all communications.
- An attorney will know to negotiate with an insurance company if you need additional benefits.
- An attorney knows your rights and won’t let an insurance company push you around.
What to Expect After You Are in a Car Accident
You may be a bit sore and kind of in shock right after an accident. If you are not taken to the hospital for evaluation, it is a good idea to seek medical attention soon after the accident because there can be internal injuries that you are not immediately aware of. You want to pay particular attention to anything going on physically or mentally that doesn’t feel right or normal and be sure that you tell a medical professional about it.
You should have contacted your insurance company who will have opened a claim under your own policy. Your insurance company will want to know the name and insurance information about the other driver to let his or her company know that there will be a claim made on your behalf. This is where an experienced car accident attorney can really help. Your attorney will know how to coordinate everything so that you are getting what you need and your claim is moving forward at the same time.
Establishing Responsibility for Causing the Accident
An issue that will need to be addressed pretty quickly is figuring out who is at fault for the accident. You may think the other driver is clearly at fault, for example in a commercial truck accident caused by distracted driving, but that person and his or her insurance company will not be eager to admit they are responsible. They may try to claim that you had some responsibility for causing the accident. You would need to do further investigation, collect additional evidence and make an argument as to why your actions did not contribute to the accident.
In California, you can still partially recover compensation for your injuries and other damages even if you are found to have some fault for an accident. The amount you are able to recover will be reduced by your percentage of fault – which is why it benefits you to minimize any responsibility you might have.
Evaluating the Extent of Your Injuries
Some of your injuries may be obvious right away and others may take time to discover. Some may heal and others may persist. No two people will be affected in exactly the same way. However, there are certain parts of the body that are more commonly injured in car accidents.
- Bruising and minor cuts – Contusions and scrapes are quite common and rarely serious.
- Broken bones – The injuries are treated immediately and usually don’t result in permanent injury.
- Whiplash – Muscles and ligaments get strained as the force of impact throws you forward and back. The result can be quite painful but usually doesn’t result in permanent injury.
- Internal injuries – Pressure from restraints, impacting a hard surface or being crushed in a vehicle can all cause damage to delicate internal organs. Damage can be severe and may not be discovered until it becomes serious.
- Spine injuries – The force of the crash can cause the herniation of discs which can be painful, limit mobility, and may require surgery. Injuries can be slow to heal and may result in permanent impairment.
- Brain injuries – A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can occur when the force from the accident causes your brain to bang about inside your skull damaging nerve tissue and possibly breaking blood vessels. Brain injuries are classified as mild to severe and can result in permanent disability requiring lifetime care.
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) – You might develop prolonged anxiety from the car accident which may include reliving the experience over and over. You may feel agitated and jumpy. Or you may withdraw and avoid anything that could remind you of your experience. Dealing with PTSD may require a combination of therapy and medication with no assurance of resolution.
Settling Your Claim
How and when your claim will settle depends on the issues that need to be agreed on and the people doing the negotiating. You don’t want to settle until you have a good idea of how your injuries will resolve. Once you know the extent of your injuries you will have a better idea of the necessary treatment, how long it will take, and if there will be any permanent damage.
Generally, the insurance company wants to pay you the least amount possible. If you and the insurance company can agree, then you can proceed with a settlement. The process could take a few months or a year or more if you can’t agree and end up filing a lawsuit.
Call Ellis Law for the Right Advice
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, there is no reason not to consult with an attorney. Most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations without obligation. You can gain valuable insight and information that can help you no matter how you decide to proceed. You need to understand how insurance companies try to settle claims so that you can respond in a way that makes them take you seriously.
If you work with Ellis Law, know that the insurance companies are well aware of our reputation for going all out for our clients. Our Riverside personal injury lawyers are prepared to do whatever it takes to get you the best results possible. Call our office 24/7 at (310) 641-3335 or click here to contact us and take advantage of our free claim review.