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Asheville Car Accident Lawyer

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Asheville Car Accident Attorney

Car accidents are one of the most frequent forms of personal injury and can happen to anyone. Being involved in a car accident can be incredibly overwhelming and may leave you with significant property damage or injuries. However, with the help of an Asheville car accident lawyer, you can be awarded the compensation you need to remain financially stable in this trying time.

Car accidents can happen because drivers fail to follow traffic signals, are driving impaired, are speeding, are distracted by another task, or a combination of these reckless or careless behaviors. Car accidents can also happen because of dangerous weather conditions or improperly cared-for roads.

When you or a loved one suffer injuries in a car accident that was not your fault, you deserve compensation. You may be dealing with the costs of medical bills on top of lost income, car repairs, and other issues from your accident. An insurance claim can cover these damages.

Unfortunately, an insurance claim will not always be enough to compensate for the scope of your damages, and a personal injury claim may be necessary. Negotiating both these claims can be frustrating during this time. By working with an experienced Asheville auto accident lawyer, they can handle negotiations for you, enabling you to rest and increasing the chances of maximum compensation.

The Representation and Resources to Benefit Your Claim

A car accident personal injury claim requires evidence, investigation, and strong negotiation. This can be difficult to do when you are recovering from an injury or mourning a loss. A skilled attorney can manage these things on your behalf and has significant experience negotiating insurance and personal injury claims. This increases the likelihood that your claim or claim will succeed.

At Bridgman Gantt Law Offices, we want you to earn the compensation you deserve. We know that this is an incredibly difficult time and that the process of filing a claim can feel overwhelming. We provide you with personalized care, working to understand your unique circumstances and claim. We use our firm’s resources to thoroughly investigate the scene of the accident, gathering essential evidence to determine fault.

Our skilled attorneys can help you understand each step of the claims process so that you know what you are entitled to and the chances of a successful claim. We understand that the compensation from this claim can give you and your family essential financial stability and know the importance of a claim. At Bridgman Gantt, we want to answer your questions and give you the legal guidance you need.

How Is Fault Determined in a Car Accident in North Carolina?

Whether you are filing an insurance claim or a personal injury claim, determining fault is important. The party or parties that are at fault for the accident can be held legally and financially liable for the damages caused. In North Carolina, injured parties can file with the at-fault driver’s insurance and/or file a personal injury against the at-fault driver.

Determining who is at fault for an accident can be complex. Every crash has many varying factors, and it’s likely that multiple parties are partially at fault. The accident has to be thoroughly investigated to determine who is at fault. Evidence that may be useful in these investigations include:

  • Police onsite accident reports
  • Medical documentation from each party’s injuries
  • Eye witness accounts
  • Photo evidence of the accident aftermath
  • Video capture of the crash, such as from CCTV
  • Repair and damage reports for all involved vehicles
  • Accident reconstruction professionals

The contributory negligence system is used in North Carolina. This means that if an injured party is determined to be at all at fault for the accident, they cannot claim compensation for their damages.

One party may be found to be 97% percent liable for the crash, but the injured party who was 3% responsible still cannot obtain coverage due to their fault. Not many states use the contributory negligence system. This system makes it very hard for victims of accidents to get coverage for property damage, medical bills, and lost income.

When you are in an accident in Asheville, NC, it is essential to obtain legal aid from an experienced attorney. An attorney is your greatest chance at limiting your liability and preventing you from being found the 1% liable required to deny you compensation.

Common Types of Car Accidents in Asheville, NC

Different types of car crashes result in different injuries and damages and may require different methods to determine the at-fault party. Some types of car accidents are more likely to result in fatalities, and loved ones may need to file a wrongful death claim for their deceased family member. Common types of accidents include:

  • Hit-and-run collisions. It’s against state law to leave the scene of an accident. Hit-and-run accidents may only result in property damage to empty cars, or they may result in significant injury. An attorney can help injured drivers or those with other damages find the responsible party and hold them liable for those damages or determine other legal options for compensation.
  • Rear-end accidents. Rear-end collisions are among the most commonly occurring accidents. These accidents may seem to have a clear at-fault party, but it is frequently more complicated. These accidents can result in whiplash and other neck and back injuries. Higher-speed rear-ends can also result in traumatic brain injuries.
  • Speeding accidents. Driving above the speed limit or too quickly for the road and weather conditions is reckless driving. It lowers the time a driver has to react to changes on the road while increasing the damage caused by an accident. Speeding accidents can result in sideswipes, rear-ends, head-on collisions, and T-bone accidents. High-speed head-on accidents are among the most fatal types of car accidents.
  • Driving under the influence (DUI) accidents. Driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is illegal. It lowers the ability of a driver to react to road changes and limits their ability to make rational decisions about driving. DUI puts others on the road in significant danger and can result in severe car accidents.
  • Distracted driving accidents. Distracted driving can occur when drivers text, eat, drink, make phone calls, mess with the radio, converse with passengers, or otherwise take actions that take their eyes and focus off the road. This increases the chances of an accident and can result in a distracted driver being held liable for an accident.
  • Fatigued driving accidents. Driving while fatigued can slow a driver’s reaction speed and can also cause drivers to fall asleep at the wheel. Falling asleep at the wheel is more likely to cause a head-on collision, which is more likely to be fatal.
  • Accidents with underinsured and uninsured drivers. An accident with a driver who is underinsured or not insured at all can be more complex. There is required coverage for uninsured motorists in the state, but getting sufficient coverage from that insurance may be hard. A personal injury claim may be the only way for an injured driver to earn compensation from an uninsured driver.
  • Accidents involving pedestrians and bicyclists. Accidents between motor vehicles and pedestrians or cyclists are likely to cause more significant harm to the pedestrians or cyclists. These individuals are more likely to suffer from fatal injuries.
  • Road hazard accidents. Accidents can be the result of potholes, uneven pavement, water drainage issues, or unclear or unreadable road signs and signals. If the accident was caused by road upkeep failure, a private or governmental agency responsible for the road care could be held responsible.
  • Manufacturer defect accidents. Car accidents such as rear-ends or spinout accidents may be caused by defective car parts or manufacturer defects. Brakes, headlights, suspension, tires, or other essential parts of the car may fail or malfunction, causing a crash. These accidents may be the fault of the driver for not fixing a clear issue with their car, the fault of the manufacturer or seller for providing a faulty car component, or a repair or maintenance company that should have caught the issue.

Common Types of Car Accident Injuries in Asheville, NC

The type and severity of a party’s injuries can impact the complexity of an insurance or personal injury claim and how much compensation the claim is worth. Some injuries sustained in a car accident may not manifest until several days after the crash.

For this reason, it’s important to be checked over by a healthcare professional after an accident, even if you don’t feel injured. Traumatic brain injuries frequently have severe consequences but may not show symptoms for several days. A medical professional will be able to check for signs of these injuries. The documentation of obtaining medical help also aids in any claims.

Common injuries in car accidents include:

  • Head injuries, including skull fractures, eye injuries, mouth injuries, or broken noses
  • Traumatic brain injuries, such as concussions or any bruising, bleeding, or physical harm to the brain
  • Back, neck, and spinal injuries, such as whiplash
  • Fractures and broken bones
  • Soft tissue injuries, including strains, sprains, cuts, lacerations, and other damage to muscles and ligaments
  • Burns or electrocution
  • Loss of limbs

Some of these injuries can result in life-long medical complications or require extensive physical therapy. These costs need to be accounted for when calculating the damages that need to be covered in a claim. Car accidents also have a mental and psychological impact, causing those injured to suffer from anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These are injuries that deserve compensation.

Many individuals filing insurance or personal injury claims underestimate the compensation they are owed and fail to account for future complications, future medical costs, or rehabilitative treatment. An attorney has handled cases like this before and knows what is fair compensation for the severity of unique injuries and damages.

What To Do After A Car Accident in Asheville, NC?

When you are involved in an accident, the first step is to call for professional medical attention as soon as you are able. If it is safe and possible to do so, get any cars out of the road and exit the vehicle. Check to see that others involved in the accident are all right, and call to report the accident and any known injuries.

Once the accident is reported, take the following steps:

  1. Move to a safe location, if you can, that is out of the way of traffic.
  2. Exchange information with the other driver, including names, insurance information, and a phone number or address.
  3. Make note of any eyewitnesses to the crash and obtain their contact information, as this may be useful evidence in a claim.
  4. Be honest about the events that occurred, but do not say why the crash happened, and do not admit fault.
  5. Get the medical care you need.
  6. Get in contact with a qualified car accident attorney, ideally before contacting your insurance provider or the other driver’s provider.

It’s important to talk with an attorney sooner rather than later. They can protect your rights during the negotiation process and have access to additional forms of evidence.

How Does an Asheville Car Accident Attorney Help Me?

Handling a car accident insurance or personal injury claim after a crash can be unnecessarily aggravating at a time when you need to rest and heal. If you are unused to negotiating with insurance providers, this can be even more difficult. The goal of an insurance provider is to limit the cost and liability, and this means they will work to provide you with as little as possible. In some cases, this even means falsely accusing you of being at fault.

An attorney can handle these discussions on your behalf. A car accident attorney is experienced with negotiations with insurance providers, and these providers are less likely to attempt underhanded tactics with legal professionals. Your attorney will also be able to review the specifics of your situation prior to negotiations and calculate the true and fair damages you should be awarded.

Without an attorney, it is likely that you would underestimate the true extent of compensation you should earn and fail to cover your damages. While many people can calculate their damages from property damage or medical bills, long-term care or complications are frequently overlooked or miscalculated. An attorney can accurately calculate your damages and enter into insurance negotiations with full awareness of what is reasonable compensation.

Your attorney can investigate the accident, determine fault, advocate for your rights in negotiation, defend you in litigation, and handle the necessary legal deadlines and requirements. By working with an attorney, you can maximize the financial benefits of your claim.

What Damages Are Available in an Asheville Car Accident Claim?

Every car accident claim will have a unique compensation award. If you are not considered at fault for the accident, you can claim compensation for any damages you suffered in the accident or as a result of the accident. A claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance provider may provide coverage for bodily injury and a certain amount of property damage.

If the damages go beyond these covered amounts or include mental trauma or suffering, a personal injury claim may be useful. A personal injury claim for a car accident may be able to compensate:

  • Medical costs. Medical costs include past bills such as surgeries, medication, doctor’s appointments, and hospital stays. They also include any rehabilitative care or future medical costs, such as anticipated complications to the injury.
  • Lost wages. If you are unable to work for some time while you recover from your injuries, the wages you lose should be compensated. If you have to miss work for doctor’s appointments related to the injury, these wages may also be compensable.
  • Lost earning capacity. Severe injuries may prevent you from returning to work or returning to your previous job duties. If this is the case, or if the injury and recovery time otherwise hurt your future earning capacity, you may be able to cover those losses.
  • Property damage. Typically, this includes damages to your vehicle. A claim could cover repair costs, the diminished value of a damaged and repaired car, or replacement costs of the vehicle. Other belongings in the car that were damaged or destroyed may also be covered.
  • Pain and suffering. Mental and physical distress and suffering are forms of non-economic damages that are available in personal injury claims. These damages include loss of quality of life and other hard-to-quantify damages. Your attorney can determine how to fairly maximize these damages in your claim.
  • Punitive damages. Punitive damages are not common, but they may occur in some car accident claims. These damages are assigned to punish the at-fault party. This is only done if the at-fault party is determined to have acted with malice or willful misconduct or if fraud was present.

If you are unsure what your car accident claim is worth, an experienced attorney can help you calculate the right amount.

How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Claim in Asheville, NC?

Civil claims have a legal time limit, or statute of limitations, in which you can file your claim. For car accident claims, which are a form of personal injury claim, this limit is three years in North Carolina. It’s beneficial to your claim to file as soon as possible.

Contact Our Asheville Auto Accident Lawyer Today

The sooner you begin working with experienced legal counsel, the better. It’s useful to have an attorney from the beginning of the insurance claim process who can help you determine your avenues for compensation. Contact the compassionate attorneys at Bridgman Gantt today.

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