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Personal injury claims can come in many forms. The most common type of personal injury claim is a car wreck. If you have been injured in an auto accident, you need to prove two things to win your case. 1.  That someone else was at fault for the accident.  The law calls this “negligence.” 2. That you were injured and required medical treatment.  The law calls this “damages.”  If you can prove fault (negligence) and injury (damages), you are entitled to be compensated for your losses.  Below are a few common questions that people have after they have been in an accident.

What does it mean to settle my claim?

Many auto accident cases settle without a lawsuit.  Some even settle after a lawsuit is filed and before a trial begins.  When you settle your claim against a person who injures you, it means that you are accepting an amount of money in exchange for releasing this person from further legal obligation to pay you, and that you will not sue them.  If you sign a release of claim with an insurance company before you have completed treatment, you will likely be unable to receive money for any treatment after you sign the release.

What happens if I file a lawsuit?

Sometimes insurance companies will not offer a fair amount to make up for your injuries.  In that case, you have the option to file a lawsuit.  If your attorney feels that you need to file a lawsuit, he or she will guide you through the process and give you advice along the way.  The attorney will handle all of the legal procedures involved in the case and present your case to the jury at trial.

What will I get if I win my case?

If you settle your claim, you will receive whatever money you agree to accept from the insurance company or person who caused the accident.  If you win a lawsuit, a jury will assign an amount money for your past medical costs, future medical costs if necessary, damage to your vehicle, reimbursement for transportation costs accumulated for treatment, and for your pain and suffering from your injuries. 

What happens to the person who injured me?

Depending upon the circumstances of the wreck, sometimes you may feel anger or sympathy, or a combination of emotions toward the person who injured you.  You cannot go back in time and change what occurred, so instead, you have to make a monetary claim against the person who caused the accident.  If the person has automobile insurance, their insurance company will provide them with an attorney, and will pay any settlement or jury award up to the limits of their

insurance policy. 

Can I make a claim against my own insurance policy if I have a car wreck?

Maybe.  It depends upon the coverage you have and the facts of the case.  There are times that a person can be injured in a single-car accident and still have a claim.  At other times, the person who hit you may not have insurance or may not have enough insurance.  In those instances, you could also make a claim against your own insurance if you have coverage.

Do I have a certain amount of time to settle or file a lawsuit for my claim?

Yes.  Each state has different statutes of limitations, but you do have a limited amount of time to file suit or settle your claim.  If you go beyond the time limit, your claim will be gone forever. 

Call or email us today for a free consultation to make sure that you are making a claim in time.  Let us see if there is anything that we can do to help you. 

Practicing Attorneys

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