A car accident can change your life in an instant. You can be left with serious injuries and unable to work, resulting in lost income. Many people hurt in a car accident aren’t sure what to do next. The experienced Indiana car accident lawyers at Vaughan & Vaughan can help you every step of the way. We can fight for your rights and help you get the compensation you deserve.
Our law firm has been helping the injured throughout Indiana since 1913. We have locations in Lafayette, Indianapolis, Carmel, Anderson, Kokomo, and Muncie, IN. Our practice has grown, but our focus is the same: fighting for clients to help them recover financial compensation. You can contact us to learn more about your right to legal action and to begin drafting your personal injury complaint.
The Relationship Between Car Accidents and Negligence
Every year, people get hurt in crashes on streets, highways, and rural roads in Indiana. Many of these crashes are caused by the negligence of another driver. A driver is speeding or driving recklessly. Some drivers are distracted or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs. It is rare, however, for these drivers to accept responsibility for what happened.
Most of the time, these drivers’ insurance companies will stick with them, usually because the insurance company wants to protect its bottom line. If you do receive a settlement offer, it may be the lowest possible offer the company can make – or nothing at all. Some insurance providers and/or liable parties may even try to blame you for the accident.
Instead of resigning yourself to the machinations of an insurance company, know that you have the right to take action against the party responsible for your accident. You can claim that a party at your accident scene violated the duty of care owed to you and that, in the face of that negligence, you deserve their financial support throughout your recovery.
When to Call an Indiana Personal Injury Lawyer
You may be told that you don’t need a lawyer to file a claim for financial compensation after a car accident. Technically, that is true, but by having an experienced Indiana car accident attorney on your side, you can be sure your rights are being protected and that you are being treated fairly. In general, statistics show that victims who get the help of a personal injury lawyer, on average, get more in compensation than those who don’t.
Remember, insurance companies will likely try to pay you as little as possible. They may offer you a lowball settlement that does not come close to covering the damages you have suffered. We can determine the amount of compensation you deserve, and we have the resources to investigate your accident to prove that another’s negligence led to your injuries.
We encourage you to consult with an attorney before making any decisions about your claim. Our law firm offers a free consultation. We can review the details of your case, answer all your questions and explain your options so you can make an informed decision about what to do.
Our Team Can Also Help You Address Healthcare Concerns After Motor Vehicle Accidents
There are steps you need to take after a car accident to make your recovery as straightforward as possible. For example, it is in your best interest to schedule a medical exam as soon as you can, even if you feel fine. Some injuries won’t reveal themselves until days or weeks after your accident, at which point they may require more intensive attention than they did initially.
Pursuing a medical examination shortly after your accident also allows you to secure the medical records you need to later elaborate on the overall value of your car accident case. These examinations can provide you with the data you need to request compensation for:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Several spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
- Neck injuries
- Internal injuries
While healthcare professionals can submit medical records in paper form, these parties can also serve as expert witnesses should your case for car accident compensation go to a civil trial. Together we can argue for your right to receive care that can restore your previous quality of life.
Your Auto Accident Injuries Have Value
No two car accident settlements look the same. So long as you bring forward evidence that negligence contributed to your decreased quality of life, however, you can work with a car accident lawyer in Indiana to calculate the value of your economic and non-economic damages before presenting your request for support to a civil judge.
Your economic damages represent the actual monetary losses stemming from your accident. Examples of economic damages include your medical expenses, both past and future. They also include lost income and loss of future earning capacity if you can’t work again. Other examples of economic damages can include any needed modification to your home or vehicle, as well as property damage.
There is also compensation for non-economic damages. These are losses that have had an impact on your life but don’t represent an actual monetary loss. Examples of non-economic damages can include pain and suffering, emotional distress, disability, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium.
We Can Negotiate with Insurance Providers on Your Behalf
Soon after your car accident, the insurance company may contact you with a settlement offer. They may even tell you that it’s the best that they can do. It might seem tempting to accept this offer and get some money sooner rather than later.
However, insurance adjusters working for larger providers typically make lowball settlement offers following a car accident. That means their offer falls far short of covering your actual damages. They are hoping you will accept the offer and just go away, saving them money. If you take their offer, often you can’t ask for more later.
Many times, when insurance companies see that we are ready to fight for you, they are willing to sit down and negotiate. But we are only interested in a settlement that meets your needs. If they won’t agree to a settlement that works for you, we will be ready to fight for you in court. Our case results include many significant settlements and verdicts.
When to Tell Your Insurer that You’ve Been in an Auto Accident
You need to notify your insurance company in a timely manner following your accident. We suggest notifying your insurance company as soon as possible. Failing to do so may result in a denial of benefits.
It is important to keep your notification brief and to the point. Stick to the facts about what happened, and don’t volunteer any additional information. If the insurance company asks you any questions, tell them you will be getting legal advice first. Then contact an experienced car accident attorney.
What to Do if an Insurance Provider Denies Your Accident Claim
If an insurance adjuster refuses to acknowledge the value of your recent accident, you still have legal options available to you. You can work with experienced auto accident attorneys to bring an at-fault driver forward in civil court. Together you can argue that you deserve the maximum compensation for your case.
To make these arguments, you need to bring forward evidence of both your denied insurance claims and the role negligence played in your initial losses. You can do this by submitting witness statements, police reports, and even physical debris as proof of your accident’s impact on your quality of life. Our team can then present an analysis of this proof to further your argument for a settlement.
You’ll need to act quickly if you want to bring your auto accident claim forward within Indiana’s state deadline. The statute of limitations in Indiana doesn’t allow car accident victims to bring forward claims addressing their losses more than two years after the day their accident occurs. You can learn more about the statute and what it means for your case in Indiana Code §34-11-2-4.
Types of Accident Cases We Handle
Our expert car accident attorneys in Indiana know how to address all types of car accident cases, including:
- Head-On Collisions
- Rear-End Accidents
- T-Bone/Intersection Accidents
- Distracted Driving Accidents
- Drunk Driving Accidents
- Highway Accidents
- Bicycle Accidents
- Pedestrian Accidents
You can also discuss the need to address fatal crashes or crashes resulting in severe injuries with our team. Schedule an initial case consultation with a Vaughan & Vaughan representative to learn more about your right to take legal action in the face of long-term car accident disability and/or car accidents resulting in wrongful death.
Who to Hold Responsible for Your Car Accident Losses
Holding another party responsible for your losses on the road isn’t always as straightforward as it seems. You need to bring forward viable evidence, as previously mentioned, if you want to name a specific party – be that an individual or larger institution – responsible for your traffic accident. Some of the parties that often appear in car accident cases can include:
- Other drivers
- Construction crews
- Government parties
- Corporate employees
As you’re compiling your car accident claim, you need to determine what percent at fault a party may be. Indiana operates on an understanding of modified comparative negligence. Modified comparative negligence states that so long as you are less than 51 percent liable for your accident, you can request damages from another party.
The party you name liable for your losses must then, should your case resolve in your favor, provide you with a settlement that matches the percentage of fault they contributed to your accident. You may even have the opportunity to divide fault between multiple groups and thus receive support from several different parties.
What to Expect After Filing a Car Accident Personal Injury Claim
Once you bring your car accident claim to the attention of a civil judge, it’s up to that party and their affiliates to determine if your case moves forward. Only once you receive the right to summon an at-faulty party can you choose how your quest for a settlement proceeds. Your right to act can see you put your right to car accident compensation in the hands of a judge, or you can negotiate for support.
Both of these approaches allow you to request economic and non-economic damages for your losses. The legal experience of a courtroom, however, can provide more structure to your case, particularly if you’re contending with an uncooperative defendant.
That said, negotiating for a car accident settlement can put you in the driver’s seat of your case. You can work with an Indiana automobile accident attorney to present your argument for support and determine what give and take suits you in out-of-court meetings with the defendant and their representation.
A History of Getting Fair Compensation for Car Accident Victims
We know where to look for evidence to build a strong case that proves the negligence of another driver caused your crash. Then we seek compensation for the damages you have suffered – including past and future medical expenses related to your injury, lost wages, and other damages like pain and suffering.
Attorney Charles V. Vaughan is certified in civil trial law by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. This recognition is given only to experienced attorneys who have demonstrated skill in the courtroom and have undergone rigorous testing. It’s a hard certification to earn, but we believe our clients deserve the best representation we can give them.
Turn to the law firm that the people of Indiana have been relying on for generations – Vaughan & Vaughan. People trust us because they know we have the experience that produces results. When we represent you, your needs always come first. We focus on getting the best outcome possible in your case.
Our Indiana Car Accident Lawyers Advocate for Your Right to a Comprehensive Personal Injury Claim
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident, get in touch with our car accident attorneys in Indiana today for a free consultation. Our team can review your case and go over all your options to help you decide what to do next.
We are available to discuss your right to legal action after an auto accident over the phone or through our website. You can reach us by calling our office or sending us a message through our contact form. We have offices in Lafayette, Indianapolis, Carmel, Muncie, Kokomo, and Anderson and represent injured people statewide.