Auto Accident Lawyer Indianapolis, IN 

An Indianapolis auto accident lawyer knows that auto accidents happen every day in Indiana, but that does not make them any less serious. Whether your injuries are minor or severe, if another driver’s actions led to the incident, then you have a right to file a claim against them so that they are held accountable.

Auto Accident

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    Tips for Staying Safe on the Road

    When you get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, you need to put safety at the top of your priority list. Even a minor motor vehicle accident can lead to significant injuries. What do you need to do to keep yourself safe on the road? If you are involved in a car accident, call 911 immediately. Then, do not hesitate to reach out to an Indianapolis auto accident lawyer, such as a member of the Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers.

    Maintain Your Vehicle Properly

    If you want to minimize your chances of being involved in a motor vehicle accident, you need to maintain your vehicle properly. You may think that if your vehicle is working well, there is no reason for you to take it to the shop; however, proper maintenance is critical because it can improve your vehicle’s handling. That way, you have more control of your vehicle, and you can reduce your chances of suffering a car accident.

    Avoid Driving in Bad Weather 

    You should also try to avoid driving in bad weather. For example, if there is a thunderstorm outside, you should not drive unless you have to. If there is snow outside, you should try to stay off the roads unless you absolutely have to go out. Bad weather can reduce your visibility and make it hard for your tires to have appropriate traction on the road. If you are involved in a car accident in bad weather, make sure you call 911. Then, contact an Indianapolis auto accident lawyer. 

    Do Not Use Your Cell Phone

    We are addicted to our cell phones; however, you should try to avoid using your cell phone while driving. If you talk on the phone while driving, your attention is going to be split between the phone call and the road. You absolutely should never text and drive. If you take your hands off the wheel, you will lose control of your vehicle, increasing your chances of being involved in a car accident. Focus on the road when driving. 

    Steps to Take After an Automobile Accident

    While it may be easy to forget, every time you drive has the potential to turn into an unforgettable day. With distracted driving increasingly becoming a problem, getting rear-ended may happen at any time. If the accident is severe enough, you may be dealing with medical bills and a slow healing process that affects the rest of your life. What you do after the incident, including finding an Indianapolis auto accident lawyer, is vital to get compensated for injuries associated with the incident.

    First Steps

    Call the police. If you were injured and did not cause the accident, assess your own injuries and decide if you should go to the hospital. If you are able, focus on documenting everything you can. Along with taking photos of insurance cards and license plates, ensure the scene itself is documented, including vehicle damage and the location.

    Obtain Information

    If possible, get contact information from the person at fault and any potential witnesses. Check to see if any surrounding businesses have cameras that may have captured the scene. If the accident eventually results in a lawsuit, that will be necessary evidence for an attorney from Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers.

    Contact Insurance

    The next step is to contact your insurance company to get an auto claim going. During that process, they will send out an adjuster to assess the vehicle damage. The person at fault’s insurance will also contact you. Before discussing the incident and signing anything, consult with an Indianapolis IN auto accident lawyer.

    Seek Medical Attention

    Even if you just feel a little sore, there could be internal injuries or minor ones that could lead to long-term issues. Oftentimes, whiplash or a brain injury may not appear right away. If left untreated, they could result in headaches, memory loss or concentration issues. Other injuries, such as a sprained, fractured or broken bone, mean recovery time that may result in lost income.

    What Kinds of Compensation Are Available for Accident Victims

    The types of legal damages available to motor vehicle accident victims often depend on the circumstances surrounding each particular accident. For example, if only an individual’s vehicle has been damaged and that individual was not injured during an accident, that victim will not be entitled to seek relief related to pain and suffering or medical bills associated with physical injury.

    Damages are often broken into two broad categories: special and general. Special damages are objective and economic, while general damages are more subjective and not tied to a specific expense.

    General Damages

    Compensation for pain and suffering are “general” damages. A client may receive an award for “general” damages when an accident is particularly severe. This type of restitution may include compensation for psychological trauma from the accident. Loss of consortium is a “general” or “non-economic” damage. The spouse of an accident victim may receive an award for the loss of companionship when the plaintiff’s severe injuries affect the ability of the spouse to have a physical relationship.

    Special Damages

    “Economic” or “Special” damages are usually easier to prove than general damages and may be available to victims of accidents that are not especially severe. Special damages include compensation for medical expenses and loss of wages, as well as restitution for property damage. One of the many reasons it is important to seek medical assistance immediately following an accident is that it is often easier to prove that an individual is entitled to injury-related damages if the victim is evaluated by a physician right away.

    Finally, if an individual dies from injuries, the family of the victim may be able to obtain both special and general damages related to the loss of that individual by filing a wrongful death suit. lawyers experienced in filing these kinds of lawsuits can help to explain the particulars of what a family can generally expect from this kind of action.

    Why You Should Not Negotiate Your Own Settlement

    What many victims of car crashes do not realize is that when they file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company, they may become a victim twice. How?

    Quite often, insurance companies deny valid claims in an attempt to reduce their exposure. If they do accept your claim, more than likely they will not offer you a fair amount. Most people will accept a low settlement, thinking it’s better than nothing, especially if the insurance company is adamant that it’s all they will pay. And often, it really is all that they will pay until the victim hires an Indianapolis auto accident lawyer!

    Who Is Responsible

    Generally, state law governs who is responsible for damages in the wake of an accident. But fault is a complex legal concept and it is generally a good idea to speak with a lawyer in the wake of an accident. Even when the circumstances of an accident seem straightforward, insurance companies and other drivers may make it difficult for victims to obtain the compensation they deserve.

    When The Insurance Company Doesn’t Take Your Claim Seriously

    An Indianapolis auto accident lawyer from Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers can negotiate on your behalf with the insurance company. But when an insurance adjuster refuses to negotiate fairly and in good faith, we will escalate your personal injury claim to a lawsuit. In most situations, insurance companies would rather avoid a costly and publicly embarrassing court case. They will often return to the negotiating table simply to avoid that. In this way, we recover the maximum possible compensation for our clients.

    Filing a Claim with the Insurance Company

    Following a car accident, you will likely consider whether it’s appropriate to seek compensation for your losses. If you believe someone else is at fault and you have suffered injuries, move forward. You can do this by contacting an Indianapolis, IN auto accident lawyer.

    The First Call You Make After an Accident With Injury

    Contacting a personal injury lawyer is one of the first calls you should make following a car accident. At Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers, our lawyers dedicate their skills to helping you receive the compensation you deserve. Our Indianapolis auto accident lawyers can help you move forward in the claims process.

    We will work tirelessly to represent you by gathering evidence, putting together the demand letter, and negotiating with insurance companies. You deserve all the guidance and experience Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers has to offer. 

    The Demand Letter

    The process begins with a lawyer reviewing your case. This attorney determines the value of your claim. And after gathering all of the evidence, your lawyer will write a letter of demand to the adjuster. The demand letter will contain critical information regarding your accident and outline the need for compensation. It will include:

    A Description of the accident

    The insurance adjuster will study the description of the accident in detail. He or she will be looking for any element of fault they might assign to you. Why? Indiana is a comparative fault state. This reduces your compensation by the percentage of fault.

    An Outline of your injuries and treatments

    The total of your medical bills and future medical bills are a portion of the compensation request.

    Dollar amount of losses you are facing

    The demand for economic losses is a big part of the Demand Letter. Economic losses generally include medical bills and loss of wages.

    The amount of compensation you are asking for

    This includes the totality of all damages, economic and non-economic damages.

    Once your Indianapolis auto accident lawyer submits your demand letter to the adjuster, you may expect a timely response. At this point, you will likely receive an initial settlement offer. And this kicks off the negotiation process. 

    The Insurance Adjuster

    The insurance company will assign an adjuster to review your case. And if you directly pursue a claim with the at-fault insurance company, they will want to speak with you. While talking with them seems harmless, seek guidance from your Indianapolis, IN auto accident lawyer first.

    The adjuster reviewing your case will be looking for any indicator that you are at fault or have some responsibility. In addition, the adjuster may minimize your injuries. Take the stress out of the process by retaining the representation of an Indianapolis auto accident lawyer at Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers. 

    Determining Fault

    Proving fault is one of the essential elements of obtaining a favorable outcome following a car accident. Your lawyer will work to gather evidence that shows:

    • Duty of Care
    • Breach of Duty
    • Causation
    • Damages

    Even if you were partially at fault for the accident, you may still have a good case.

    In the state of Indiana, you must be less than 51% at fault to take legal action for damages. This allows the accident victim to obtain compensation even in situations where they may be partially at fault. For more information about how our Indianapolis auto accident lawyer will help determine fault in your case, contact Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers as soon as possible.

    Indianapolis Auto Accident Law Statistics

    According to the National Safety Council, motor-vehicle deaths in the U.S. increased 8% from 2019 to 2020 even though the number of vehicle miles traveled was 13% lower.

    • 813 fatal crashes in Indiana in 2020 (Reported By Indiana State Police) That’s up from 752 in 2019.

    FAQs About Auto Accident Laws

    What should I do immediately after an auto accident in Indianapolis?

    After an auto accident in Indianapolis, it’s crucial to ensure the safety of all involved parties by moving to a safe location if possible. Call 911 to report the accident and request medical assistance if there are any injuries. Indiana law requires the involved parties to exchange contact and insurance information. It’s also recommended to take photographs of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, and any visible injuries. Indiana’s crash report requirements mandate that accidents resulting in injury, death, or property damage exceeding $1000 must be reported to the police. These steps are essential for the safety of all parties and can be critical for any subsequent legal or insurance claims.

    How does fault affect my car accident claim in Indianapolis?

    Indiana follows a “modified comparative fault” rule, which means that the compensation you can receive from an accident is reduced by your percentage of fault. However, if you are found to be 51% or more at fault, you cannot recover any damages. This system underscores the importance of gathering evidence at the scene to support your claim. Insurance companies often conduct their own fault assessments, so presenting strong evidence is key to maximizing your compensation. Understanding this rule is crucial for anyone involved in an auto accident in Indianapolis, as it directly impacts the potential compensation for damages and injuries.

    What types of damages can I recover after an auto accident in Indianapolis?

    Victims of auto accidents in Indianapolis may be eligible to recover various types of damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering. Indiana law allows for both economic damages, which cover out-of-pocket expenses, and non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, which compensate for the physical and emotional distress caused by the accident. The state of Indiana does not impose a cap on these damages for most auto accidents, but it’s important to note that the recovery might be affected by the comparative fault rule, reducing the compensation proportionally to your fault percentage in the accident.

    Is there a deadline for filing an auto accident lawsuit in Indianapolis?

    Yes, there is a deadline, known as the statute of limitations, for filing an auto accident lawsuit in Indianapolis. For personal injury claims, the deadline is two years from the date of the accident. For property damage claims, the deadline is also two years. Missing this deadline typically results in the loss of your right to sue for damages. It’s essential to be aware of these time limits as they are strictly enforced in Indiana, and exceptions are rare. Consulting with an attorney soon after your accident can help ensure that all legal actions are taken within the appropriate timeframes.

    Should I speak to the other driver’s insurance company after an accident in Indianapolis?

    While you must report the accident to your own insurance company, it’s advisable to be cautious when speaking with the other driver’s insurance company. They may attempt to get a statement from you that could be used to minimize your claim or establish your fault. Before providing any statements or agreeing to settlements, it might be wise to consult with an attorney experienced in Indiana auto accident law. An attorney can provide guidance on how to communicate with insurance companies and help protect your rights and interests throughout the claims process.

    Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers Indianapolis Auto Accident Lawyer

    728 S Meridian St Indianapolis, IN 46225

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    “Ward and Ward Personal Injury Lawyer’s Firm is above and beyond law firms with professionalism, kindness and genuine concern. They are a powerful heartfelt team and have the experience to act quickly, effectively and efficiently, leaving no urgency as to how to pay for their services. We will always recommend Ward and Ward and will forever utilize them in the future.” – Courteny P.

    Contact Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers

    Auto accidents with serious injuries call for a lawyer in Indianapolis, Indiana. Accident claims can be more complex than you may realize. The last thing accident victims want is to short-change themselves in negotiations. Or inadvertently admit fault.

    Consulting with a lawyer does not commit you to any particular course of action. However, it will allow you to learn about your legal options and to make decisions about your accident in an informed way. Please note that evidence can become increasingly difficult to obtain as hours and days pass in the wake of an accident. As a result, it is important to speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after the collision.

    You need the skillful and tenacious lawyers at Ward & Ward Personal Injury Lawyers to protect your rights. To set up your free consultation, contact our Indianapolis auto accident lawyer. Call attorney Charlie Ward today at 317-639-9501!

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