You may be entitled to compensation if you’ve been involved in a car accident. However, the liable party’s insurance company won’t want to pay unless you have a strong claim. You need evidence if you wish to recover the full amount of damages you may be entitled to. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Buffalo, TX, or Cameron, TX, then working with a car accident attorney may be your key to success.
6 Key Elements of a Strong Personal Injury Claim in Buffalo, TX or Cameron, TX
1. An Obviously Liable Party
Cases are typically stronger when it’s clear who was responsible for the accident. Most of the time the police will determine who was liable at the scene, but that doesn’t mean they’re always 100% correct. Your attorney will generally want to do their own investigation into the accident to more accurately determine liability.
The footage from traffic cameras, dash cameras, and security cameras near the accident scene usually comes in very useful when trying to determine liability. If the footage reveals that one party was obviously at fault for the accident, then you may be on the way to building a very strong case. The case may be weaker when liability isn’t clear or when both parties may be partially liable.
2. A Lack of Reasonable Care
People have a responsibility while driving. They must adhere to the rules of the road and drive without recklessness. If the party liable for the accident was obviously being reckless or ignoring traffic signs and road rules, then they’ve breached their duty to exercise reasonable care.
Sometimes an investigation into the accident will reveal that the liable driver was on the phone, intoxicated, or otherwise distracted. Witness statements and footage may reveal the liable party was driving recklessly. The more obvious the liable party’s lack of care is, then the stronger your case may be.
3. A Timeline of Events After the Accident
Keeping a journal of events that occur after the accident may help you strengthen your case. For example, it may be helpful to write about the doctors you visited and the treatment you received if you’re trying to recover compensation for your medical treatment. You should do everything you can to document your journey after the accident to give yourself the best chance of recovering compensation that covers all of your damages.
If you’re struggling emotionally, then it would be a good idea to write it out. This may help you when attempting to recover damages for pain and suffering. If there isn’t a lot of strong evidence that you’re dealing with physical and emotional injuries, then your chances of recovering compensation may be weaker.
4. An Array of Witnesses
Witnesses are often highly useful in a personal injury claim. People who’ve witnessed the accident and those who can put together a timeline of events leading up to the accident may help determine liability.
If you’re seeking a substantial sum for your emotional distress, then testimonies from friends and family may be useful if they can confirm that your daily life has been severely impacted by the accident. Your attorney may also have a network of expert witnesses who can be called in, such as a medical practitioner to testify that your injuries were caused by the accident. Your attorney may also call experts to reconstruct the accident to help show liability.
5. An Experienced Attorney
If you work with an experienced car accident lawyer, then you generally increase your chances of winning your claim. Attempting to represent yourself is always a mistake, as the law is complex and you don’t have the expertise required to build a strong case in your favor. You should work with an attorney who treats every case like it’s going to trial, therefore building you the strongest argument possible to help you recover compensation.
You need someone fighting in your corner here. The attorney you work with also shouldn’t give up until they’ve exhausted every avenue to win you a settlement that covers all of your damages. Finally, they should be experienced enough to know when you should accept a lower settlement to avoid court.
6. A Clear Calculation of Your Damages
You can generally win compensation for economic and non-economic damages after a car accident, and economic damages are the easiest to calculate. Economic damages reimburse you for hospital bills and time off work. You should keep your hospital bills and keep records of work you’ve missed. This should help your attorney calculate your economic damages.
If you’ll need to take time off work in the future, then keep records of your payment history so the amount of income you’ll be missing out on can be calculated. If you require future medical treatment, then ask your medical team for an estimate of how much your treatment will cost going forward.
How Can a Car Accident Attorney Help Me?
1. Help You Document Your Damages
Your attorney may be able to advise you on how best to document your pain and suffering so you can recover non-economic damages. They may also advise on what records you may need to make calculating your economic damages easier.
2. Negotiate on Your Behalf
You’ll generally spend a lot of time negotiating with the liable party’s insurance company to get them to pay out what you’re entitled to in compensation. This is stressful, and you often won’t know the best tactics to use when dealing with these negotiations.
Your attorney can take on these negotiations on your behalf, and they’ll often advise you not to speak to the insurance company at all. It’s best to let your attorney handle it, as lawyers deal with negotiations like this all the time.
3. Navigate Court Procedures
There are certain procedures that must be followed even in cases that don’t go to trial. You usually won’t be knowledgeable on these, so your attorney can take care of it for you. They’ll let you know if there’s any paperwork you must fill out and file, they’ll help you adhere to deadlines, and they’ll help you navigate court customs.
4. Determine Suspect Evidence
The liable party’s attorney will do everything they can to put together a strong case to try and show that their client isn’t liable. If the other attorney uses any evidence that seems suspect, then your attorney will usually attempt to dissect it and reveal why the other side’s evidence doesn’t hold up. Part of building you a strong case is cross-examining the other side’s argument.
5. Defending You at Trial.
There’s a good chance you’ll be able to settle without going to trial. However, sometimes the insurance company will refuse to pay out, leading to the need to go to court. If you do have to enter the courtroom, then your attorney will do everything they can to deliver their argument in a way that gets the judge and jury on your side. However, if they believe your case isn’t strong enough, then they may advise you to take a lower settlement to avoid court.
Are you looking to recover compensation after a car accident in Texas? Contact Brian C. Gutierrez for a free consultation. You deserve the best legal advice possible regarding your case.