After a car crash, many accident victims are unsure how to proceed. They don’t know if their damages are significant enough to warrant filing a claim. Or an insurance adjuster outright tells them that they were partly at fault for the car crash, so they don’t have the right to seek compensation. Most of them are extremely doubtful when they contact auto accident lawyers in Las Vegas. They describe how the accident happened and end their story with the question: “So, do I have a case?”
In our experience and the many cases we have won, the answer is yes. Insurance adjusters do not hesitate to tell injured persons that they do not have a case. It is unethical, but impossible to sanction. And the fact is that many adjusters are successful in this tactic. Many people do not get any settlement for their personal injury case, simply because they do not believe it is worthwhile filing a claim.
The Elements of a Personal Injury Case in Nevada
Car accidents represent instances of personal injury. The legal doctrine states that a claimant or plaintiff must prove several elements in order to have a case against a fault party:
1. The Other Party Owed Them a Duty of Care
The duty of care represents a requirement for a person to act towards others with the attention, prudence and caution that a reasonable person would use in the specific circumstances. If a person’s actions or omissions do not meet this standard of conduct, then the respective actions or omissions are deemed to be negligent.
On public roads, every driver has a duty of care towards others:
There is no exception to this principle, so, in reality, you do not have to demonstrate that a fault party actually owed you a duty of care while they were driving on public roads. This element of a personal injury case is implicit in this situation.
2. The Other Party Breached Their Duty of Care
One of the first things a Nevada personal injury lawyer has to prove in order to win your case is that the other driver acted negligently. Negligence does not equal malice or willful intent. You don’t have to prove that the other driver intended to crash their car into yours. All you need to prove is that their action or inaction was negligent.
Such negligence can be demonstrated by:
- Distracted driving – the driver was using their mobile phone or their attention was otherwise distracted
- Driving above the speed limit
- Driving under influence of alcohol or controlled substances
- Aggressive driving – tailgating, changing lanes frequently.
3. The Other Party’s Negligence Caused Your Accident
For auto accident lawyers in Las Vegas, proving that someone’s negligence caused a car crash is a simple task. Such an event generates a lot of evidence, starting with eyewitnesses and ending with the accident report prepared by the law enforcement team.
What makes cases difficult is assigning the correct proportion of fault of all the parties involved in a crash. We will explain this more in detail below.
4. The Car Crash Resulted in Injuries and Economic Damages
Personal injury cases are not about assigning guilt and securing a conviction. They are about financial compensation for economic losses. Thus, you have to prove that you suffered financial losses as a direct result of the accident.
These losses are of various types:
- Property damage – your crashed car
- Medical care and hospital bills
- Lost wages while you were recovering from the accident.
Your Nevada personal injury lawyer will make sure that all the eligible damages are included in your claim.
How Does My Partial Fault Influence My Car Crash Case?
In some cases, it is obvious that one party was solely responsible for a car crash. But there are less clear situations. For example, a speeding driver hits another car whose driver was not wearing the safety belt and, as a result, suffers serious injuries.
Thus, both drivers contributed to the car crash. But, as auto accident lawyers in Las Vegas know, our state uses the contributory negligence principle in personal injury cases. This means that, as long as you are less than 50% at fault for the accident, you have the right to seek compensation from the other party.
However, the actual compensation amount you will receive will be reduced by your percentage of fault from the total damages you incurred. For instance, if you demand $100,000 in your claim and you were found 20% at fault for the accident, you will collect $80,000.
Why Should You Hire a Car Crash Lawyer?
Even if you know your rights and the law, it is very difficult to prepare, file and negotiate a car accident insurance claim on your own. You are in a vulnerable position – injured, in pain and worried about the chances of making a full recovery.
Insurance adjusters are trained to recognize and exploit accident victims’ vulnerability. If they cannot persuade you that you don’t have a case, they can use other tactics, such as:
- Offering you a lowball quick settlement
- Pushing you to make a self-incriminating statement
- Delaying the decision to settle your claim until the statute of limitations (2 years) expires.
A seasoned Nevada personal injury lawyer cannot be exploited and tricked with these tactics. They can see the adjuster’s intentions from the very beginning and adjust the approach to the negotiations accordingly.
Also, lawyers can estimate the value of your economic and non-economic losses accurately. Non-economic losses compensate you for your pain and suffering, but how can you put a number on this? An experienced lawyer will compare your situation with similar cases they handled and estimate a fair and acceptable value for your non-economic damages.
Entrust Your Car Crash Case to an Experienced Auto Accident Law Firm!
At Nettles Morris, we know if you have a case. In most situations, you do, even if others try to dissuade you from pursuing your rights. We will stand by your side and assign an experienced Nevada personal injury lawyer to handle your case.
We work on a contingency fee basis, so you do not have to pay any upfront fee. If you were injured in a car accident by someone else’s negligence, call us to schedule a free case review: 702-410-6239!