Spitzer Law Offices help the injured throughout Ohio & Texas to recover the compensation they deserve.
Americans spend more than one million days in the hospital each year as a result of traffic accident injuries. Even when we take necessary precautions to drive defensively and obey traffic laws, we cannot prevent the negligence of others. Car accidents are an unfortunate part of life, and when they occur, they can cause lasting injuries that affect victims in profound ways. If you or someone you love has been injured in any type of motor vehicle accident, the Spitzer Law Offices has you covered. We are experienced and truly care about helping you obtain the fair compensation you need to recover.
After a Car Accident
If you find yourself involved in a collision, there are specific steps you can take to protect your health and your right to compensation.
If you have been involved in a car accident in Ohio:
- Remain at the scene. Leaving without exchanging driver and insurance information is a crime.
- If possible, pull over to the side of the road.
- If someone is seriously injured or the accident is blocking traffic, call 911.
- Exchange information with the other driver or other parties involved in the collision.
- Take pictures of the scene with your phone.
- Get the contact information of any witnesses.
- Call your insurance company to inform them of the incident.
- Do not admit fault to the insurance company, law enforcement, or the other driver. Apologizing or saying you were to blame could negatively impact your future claim for compensation.
- Seek medical attention. Even if you do not think you are seriously injured, whiplash and other car accident injuries may take hours or days to become apparent. Be sure to see a doctor.
- Take notes and keep all receipts or bills related to your medical treatment.
- Contact an attorney for legal help in seeking a fair settlement or award for your injuries.
Common Causes, Injuries, & Damages in a Car Accident
Car accidents can be caused by a number of things, including distracted driving, impaired driving, mechanical failure, unsafe roadways, and a host of other potentially dangerous issues. Every driver has a duty of care to drive as safely as possible, and when their negligent or wrongful action cause accidents or injury, it is within your right to seek compensation from that driver’s insurance company to cover the costs of your injuries, damage to your vehicle, lost wages, funeral expenses in the case of a wrongful death, and other related costs.
Your hospital and rehabilitation costs alone can be hefty, especially if your injuries are severe. Traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputations, serious burns, or deep lacerations can all lead to an inability to lead your life as you once did. You may be unable to work at the same capacity, suffer a loss of enjoyment when you can no longer perform certain activities, and your family or loved ones may loose and important support system. Seeking damages from the negligent party can help compensate you for these and other losses.
Critical Facts About Car Accidents in Ohio
There are a few essential facts that you should know about the laws and procedures that may affect your car accident case:
- There is a two-year statute of limitations on car accident cases. You must give notice within two years of the incident or lose your right to compensation.
- Ohio is a “fault” state when it comes to car accidents. This means that victims of a crash have the right to hold drivers or others who caused their accidents accountable, typically through third-party insurance claims.
- Under the principle of “comparative negligence,” a victim cannot recover any compensation from the other driver if his or her own negligence contributed to the accident by more than 50%. This means that if half of the blame is found to lie on your shoulders, you may be unable to seek compensation from the other driver’s insurance policy.
- Drivers in Ohio are required to carry insurance coverage for bodily injury and property damage. It is not required that you carry underinsured and uninsured coverage but doing so may help if you are injured in a hit and run accident or if the other driver is uninsured or does not have enough coverage. Underinsured/uninsured coverage can help cover anything that exceeds the negligent driver’s policy.
Frequently Asked Questions
Whose Insurance Do I Call After an Accident?
It is important to report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Provide them with all the information you obtained after the accident, as well as any police and or medical reports. Do not admit fault. Remember, your insurance company is a business, and they may try to pay you less then you are owed in an attempt to protect their own bottom line. They may also try to outright deny your claim. This is where your attorney can step in and help.
Do You Have to Call the Police After a Minor Car Accident?
Because Ohio is a fault state, a police report is an important piece of evidence to help determine who was liable for the accident. Remember, injuries can worsen over time, so even if you feel all right immediately following a crash, you may have actually suffered more extensive, and expensive, harm. Having a police report can help strengthen your claim for compensation and prove liability.
Can I File a Claim if the Other Driver Left the Scene?
Because uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage is not required in Ohio, it may be hard to obtain the full compensation you need after a hit and run accident. In cases where you are unable to obtain the negligent driver’s information, your insurance policy will kick in, and if you do not have uninsured/underinsured coverage, your claim may be denied. Our lawyers at the the Spitzer Law Offices can work with you, standing up to your insurance company on your behalf.
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