By Adam B. Lawler | June 15, 2023

​Car Accident Causes​

​Car Accident Causes​ Car accidents happen for various reasons, but driver error usually plays a part. Car accidents occur when repair facilities perform their work negligently or when defective parts malfunction.​ You have legal rights and options if you suffered injuries in a car crash resulting from someone else's negligence. Your lawyer can meet with you to discuss your accident, determine if you can file a car accident claim, and review your legal options. ​ If you are eligible to file a claim, your lawyer can assist you with every step of the process. Moreover, if the insurance company refuses to offer you the compensation you deserve through settlement, your lawyer can litigate your case to a conclusion in court.

Driver Negligence

Car AccidentMany car crashes happen when drivers behave negligently. In a motor vehicle crash, a driver is negligent when they act unreasonably under the circumstances. Some drivers, for example, violate traffic laws or exhibit road rage, while others engage in distracted driving or operate their vehicles while intoxicated by alcohol or some other drug.​
  • Traffic law violations - Some traffic law violations are more severe than others. The most common violations that lead to car accidents include speeding and failing to yield the right-of-way at the appropriate time. For example, a driver merging onto a highway might cut off another driver, leading to a crash. At other times, the at-fault driver might try to get through a red or yellow traffic light but fail to make it in time, striking a vehicle traveling in the adjacent direction and bringing about serious injuries.​
  • Road rage - Some drivers become highly aggressive when behind the wheel. They may overreact to a real or imagined circumstance while on the road and become extremely upset with other drivers. As a result, they might tailgate another vehicle or aggressively weave in and out of highway traffic without using their turn signals. When drivers engage in these reckless acts, they significantly increase their chances of causing a traffic accident.​
  • Distracted vehicle operation - Some drivers operate their vehicles while distracted and ignore the road. Potential distractions in a car include loud music and other passengers who engage in horseplay with the driver. Individuals also become distracted when they make a phone call or send a text message on a cellular device or tablet while driving. Even though a one-or-two-second distraction might not seem like much, it can be sufficient for a driver to miss an approaching vehicle or pedestrian, negligently causing a collision.​
  • Intoxicated driving - Alcohol is a depressant, and intoxicated individuals cannot drive safely. This is because alcohol slows down a driver's central nervous system, delaying their reaction time and preventing them from responding promptly to emergencies on the road. It is against the law for a driver to operate their vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent or more. If a court convicts an intoxicated driver of DUI, the driver can receive various penalties, including suspension or revocation of their driver's license and mandatory jail time and fines. In addition, if the intoxicated driver causes an accident that leads to someone else's injuries, the at-fault driver can incur civil penalties.​
If you suffered injuries in a car crash because another driver was negligent, your lawyer can discuss your legal options and file your claim. In most instances, your lawyer will file this claim with the at-fault driver's insurance company. Your lawyer can then help you negotiate the claim and, if appropriate, settle it efficiently.

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Negligent Repair Work on Vehicles

Similarly, repair facilities must perform all repairs safely, carefully, and professionally. If they negligently repair the vehicle's brakes, transmission, or some other vehicle component—and the vehicle malfunctions on the road leading to an accident—the accident victim can bring a legal claim against the responsible facility for negligence.​ A car accident lawyer can retain the necessary experts to investigate your crash and determine who likely caused or contributed to it. Your lawyer can then file a car accident claim or lawsuit against all potentially responsible parties and pursue the compensation you deserve from the appropriate insurance company.​

Injuries that Result from Car Accidents

Car accidents often leave individuals severely injured and in need of medical treatment. After a car accident, the victim might need to follow up at a hospital emergency room or urgent care center. An attending physician can order the necessary imaging studies at the ER, including CT scans, MRIs, and X-rays. The ER doctor can make the required medical diagnoses and provide appropriate emergency treatment. In addition, they can make recommendations for follow-up treatment if needed.​ The specific injuries that a car accident victim suffers depend upon certain factors, including the impact force, the type of collision, and how the accident victim's body moves in the car during the crash. The impact force might abruptly move the accident victim's body from side to side or forward and backward. It might also cause the accident victim's body to hit the steering wheel, headrest, dashboard, window, or door frame of the vehicle, leading to a debilitating injury.​ Typical car accident injuries include:​
  • Broken bones.
  • Soft tissue contusions.
  • Internal injuries.
  • Cuts and abrasions.
  • Traumatic head injuries.
  • Spinal cord injuries.
  • Paralysis.​
As soon as possible after your car accident, you should seek medical treatment—even if you are unsure whether you suffered an injury. Untreated injuries can become more severe the longer you wait to treat them. Car accident victims should also treat continuously for their injuries and refrain from discharging themselves from a medical facility. Otherwise, the insurance company will become skeptical and may believe that the accident victim did not suffer severe injuries in the crash. Consequently, the insurance company may offer little or no money to compensate the accident victim.​ While you focus on completing your medical treatment, your lawyer can start to gather your medical treatment records, impact statement, loss wage documents, investigation reports, and other paperwork to assemble into a settlement demand package. Your lawyer can send a demand package and settlement demand letter, then begin the settlement negotiating process once you complete your medical treatment.​

Deadline to File a Claim or Lawsuit

One of the most important steps you can take following a car accident is to speak with a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Generally speaking, the sooner you get a lawyer involved in your case, the better off your claim will be. This is because accident victims do not have unlimited time to bring a claim or sue for damages. Car accident victims only have two years from their accident date to take legal action. If they file a lawsuit in court the day after the statute of limitations expires, they will not be eligible to recover any monetary compensation for their injuries. Therefore, you need a lawyer on your side who can file a prompt lawsuit on your behalf and safeguard your right to recover the money damages you need.​ A car accident lawyer can file a timely lawsuit on your behalf, begin the negotiating process efficiently, and pursue the compensation you deserve. If the insurance company does not offer you fair money damages for your injuries, your lawyer can begin the litigation process until it concludes in court. ​

Compensable Damages in Car Accident Cases

Car accident victims can recover damages. However, these damages vary from person to person and from case to case. The damages that a car crash victim may recover depend upon the severity of their injuries and medical treatment, as well as the pain, inconvenience, and suffering they endured.​ Many car crash victims suffer injuries that prevent them from working. Their doctor might authorize them to remain off work until their symptoms lessen and they can perform their job duties without pain. This is especially true if an accident victim's employer does not offer a light duty option. Some accident victims need time off work to attend their medical and physical therapy appointments. ​ If you lost earnings due to injuries you suffered in your accident, you can make a lost wage claim and pursue compensation from the insurance company. Moreover, if your injuries are so severe that you can not return to the same job or career after your accident, you can claim loss of earning capacity.​ In addition to lost wage compensation, car crash victims can pursue non-economic damages. These damages compensate accident victims for their inconvenience, suffering, pain, embarrassment, humiliation, and mental distress stemming from their injuries. If they suffer a paralysis injury or some other permanent physical impairment that prevents them from using a body part, they can claim a loss of use in their case. ​ Finally, many car accident victims cannot partake in the social, recreational, and family activities they once enjoyed. Some accident victims who were once active can no longer participate in sports and other physical activities due to their injuries. When that happens, the accident victim can bring a claim for loss of life enjoyment.​ You are not alone if you suffered injuries in a car accident that significantly affected your life. A skilled car accident lawyer will aggressively pursue the compensation you deserve in your car accident claim. Your lawyer can help you determine which of these damages you may be eligible to recover and will work hard to maximize those damages through settlement or litigation. Suppose your lawyer needs to file a lawsuit on your behalf in court. Then, they can assist you throughout each stage of the litigation and represent you at all court hearings—including at your jury trial or arbitration hearing.​

Call a Car Accident Lawyer Today

Southern Illinois Personal Injury Lawyers
Car Accident Lawyer, Adam B. Lawler
A car accident is a highly traumatizing experience for most individuals. Accident victims are often unsure of what to do or where they should turn after they suffer injuries in a crash. This is natural, but you should never wait to seek help from someone who understands your best options. ​ A personal injury lawyer can handle all of the legal aspects of your claim while you concentrate on making a full recovery. In addition to filing a claim on your behalf, your lawyer can help you decide whether you should accept a settlement offer from the insurance company or litigate it in court. Your lawyer will represent you at all of your court proceedings and help you pursue the maximum amount of compensation that you’re eligible to recover in your car accident claim.​

Adam B. Lawler

Attorney at Law / Partner

Adam Lawler is the founder of Lawler Brown. Adam is a 2004 graduate of Saint Louis University School of Law. Adam worked for a local firm until founding the Lawler Brown in 2009. Adam’s practice areas focus in Personal Injury, Business, Real Estate, Probate/Trust/Estate Administration and general litigation.

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