Understanding the Steps to File a Car Accident Lawsuit
Car accidents are often extremely damaging. Not only can they result in property damage and personal injuries, but their effects can cause emotional and financial losses. It is important that accident victims hold liable parties accountable for the damages that their actions cause.
The car accident lawyers at Reed & Terry, L.L.P., can assist accident victims from Sugar Land, TX, Katy, TX, Richmond, TX, and surrounding areas in filing a lawsuit to pursue the compensation they are due. Here, we go over the general steps of a car accident lawsuit.
Gather Evidence from the Scene
The scene of an accident is the greatest source of evidence to prove accident liability, and evidence is freshest immediately following the incident. Unless they are medically unable, victims should do as much accident investigation as possible after their crash. Drivers should:
- Exchange contact and insurance information with other involved drivers
- Get contact information from accident witnesses
- Take pictures of the scene of the accident, including damage
- File a police report
- Write notes regarding the details of the accident
Seek Medical Treatment
It is very important that people seek medical treatment following a car accident. Even if injuries seem minor, or if there is no outward evidence of injuries, internal damage may be present. The shock of an accident may prevent people from realizing the full extent of their injuries, so a medical evaluation is important. If there are injuries present, victims should continue to seek treatment until all symptoms and effects of those injuries are resolved.
File an Insurance Claim
After an accident, drivers must file a claim with their insurance company. If the accident was not their fault, their insurance company will attempt to reach a settlement with the liable party’s insurance company. The other driver’s insurance company may make contact to request a statement or offer a settlement. Accepting this settlement is usually not in a driver’s best interest. If a settlement does not take into account an accident victim’s full losses, they should take legal action.
Contact an Attorney
If an accident victim chooses to file a lawsuit to seek compensation for accident damages, it is best to have a knowledgeable attorney on their side. Injury victims should contact our car accident lawyers to discuss the details of their case and learn about the potential worth of their damages.
Once a car accident victim has hired our legal team, we will conduct our own accident and medical investigation. We will gather evidence to prove liability for the crash and resulting damages. We also collect medical bills, medical records, and pay stubs to demonstrate the extent of our client’s losses. This evidence is crucial to successful negotiations or a trial, if necessary.
When an accident victim’s medical condition has stabilized, or we feel that we can demonstrate the full range of a client’s losses, we will reach out to the liable party’s insurance company to demand a settlement. This starts the negotiations process. We will go back and forth with the insurance company until a successful settlement has been reached, or until we feel that negotiations are no longer beneficial.
Settlement or Trial
The final step of a car accident lawsuit is either accepting a settlement, or formally filing a lawsuit and taking the case to trial. Few lawsuits make it all the way to a courtroom, but our car accident lawyers are always prepared to fight in court if that is necessary to get our clients the compensation they are due.
Schedule a Free Case Review
If you believe that you are due financial compensation for the effects of a car accident, the lawyers at Reed & Terry, L.L.P., are happy to review the details of your case. Call (281) 201-0988 or schedule a free case review online at your earliest convenience.