Car Accident Lawyer in Woodbridge
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When another driver causes a car accident and you sustain injuries, Virginia law gives you the option to file an insurance claim or lawsuit to collect the money necessary to pay for your related damages. This includes a wide range of expenses related to your medical treatment and recovery, property damages, and “pain and suffering” and inconvenience.
If you suffered injuries in a crash, you need a knowledgeable car accident lawyer in Woodbridge to analyze your legal options and help you navigate the claims process. Attorney Jim Parrish and the legal team at the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC are ready to go to work for you. We know you need the maximum payout possible in your case, and will fight to ensure you receive it. Call us today at 571-229-1800 for a free consultation.
What role does negligence play in a Woodbridge car accident case?
All car accident claims in Virginia hinge on fault. To recover compensation for your damages, we must show the other driver acted negligently and caused your accident. Usually, this requires providing evidence to show the driver broke at least one traffic law, which caused the collision and your injuries.
Imagine, for example, you suffered serious injuries when another driver failed to yield the right of way when turning left at a green traffic light. You were not speeding, but still could not stop in time to avoid colliding with the other vehicle.
We must show the light was green, you had the right of way, and the other driver was turning left at the time of the accident. This will effectively show he did not exercise due caution when turning, and did not yield the right of way appropriately. A medical record depicting your immediate transport to the hospital and any resulting medical care is the most straightforward way to link your injuries to the crash.
It is important to note that Virginia’s pure contributory negligence law is not victim-friendly. If you contributed to the accident, recovering compensation will be very difficult. Jim Parrish can investigate your accident and determine any potential defenses against accusations of fault.
What type of evidence will I need to collect to win compensation?
You do not want to try to collect all the evidence necessary to build a strong case on your own. In fact, individuals rarely have the knowledge and resources necessary to obtain some of the most important evidence in these cases. Our legal team can identify and collect evidence in your case, including:
- The official police report from the accident scene
- Eyewitness accounts of your crash
- Images of the scene, your damaged vehicle, and your injuries
- Video of the crash, when available
- Your medical records pertaining to your accident injuries
- Accident reconstructions performed by experts
- Other testimony from expert witnesses
- The outcome of similar cases in VA history
How does the Virginia auto accident insurance claims process work?
Virginia motorists must carry at least a minimum amount of liability insurance or a certificate of self-insurance, as outlined under Virginia Code § 46.2-472. This is the coverage that pays out when you suffer injuries and property damage in a crash caused by the driver. To recover this compensation, we need to file a claim with that driver’s insurance company.
Usually, we include a demand letter with this claim and request a specific monetary amount based on the value of your actual accident-related damages. We rarely receive the full amount we request, but it gives us a good starting point to negotiate the settlement you need to cover your current and future losses.
Occasionally, our negotiation tactics are not enough to recover a fair settlement from the insurance company. Sometimes, it simply refuses to offer a just payout. If this happens in your case, we may need to file a lawsuit in court. We have two years from the date of your accident to pursue this option, if it becomes necessary.
What types of damages can I expect from my Woodbridge car accident claim?
There are two primary types of compensation we request in all car accident claims we file:
These are likely the damages you consider first after an accident. They include your actual expenses and financial losses. Depending on your accident, this list may include:
- Your medical care
- Rehabilitation and therapy
- Lost wages
- The cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle
- A rental car while yours is in the shop
- Equipment necessary to assist you in your recovery or to accommodate your disability
- Miscellaneous accident-related expenses
You can also recover damages you have not yet incurred. For example, if you suffered major injuries, you will likely have ongoing care costs or future medical needs. You may also be unable to return to work because of permanent injuries. We request compensation to cover all these losses and future expenses. We work tirelessly to find every dollar the accident cost you.
Noneconomic damages are not a monetary loss. You usually hear these called “pain and suffering” and inconvenience damages. These damages offer a way to compensate accident victims for the physical suffering and emotional stresses they suffered. They can be anywhere between one and five times the value of your economic damages, although the amount may be lower if you sustained only minor injuries.
There is also a third category of damages, called punitive damages, that we request in some civil suits we take to court. A judge awards punitive damages when a driver acted in a particularly heinous way or with wanton disregard for the safety of others. Most commonly, we can recover punitive damages in drunk driving accidents where the driver was significantly over the legal limit.
How much is my Woodbridge car accident claim worth?
Many accident victims ask us in their initial consultation how much we believe they can collect for their damages. Unfortunately, there is no good one-size-fits-all method that allows us to put a value on your claim. We need to investigate your accident, discuss the impact and prognosis of your injuries with experts, learn the costs of your treatment and repairing your vehicle, and analyze other costs associated with your crash.
Once we have a thorough understanding of your current losses, expected future expenses, and the pain and suffering and inconvenience you endured, we can put a potential range of value on your case. We will not know an exact value until we reach a settlement with the insurance company or the court awards you compensation.
Call the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC today.
At the Parrish Law Firm, PLLC, our legal team knows how to navigate the insurance claims process and recover the compensation you need. In fact, Jim Parrish used to represent the insurance companies so we have knowledge from the inside. Call us today at 571-229-1800 to schedule a time to talk to us.