West Virginia has been making progress in reducing auto accident fatalities and injuries. Thomas J. Smith, West Virginia Secretary of Transportation and Commissioner of Highways, said, “Yet each year nearly 300 individuals lose their lives on the roads and highways of West Virginia while more than 1,000 are seriously injured. Since the development of the first SHSP [Strategic Highway Safety Plan] in 2007 until 2015, West Virginia successfully reduced motor vehicle fatalities by 38 percent and serious injuries by 79 percent.”
The top reasons five behaviors behind car accidents include:
- Roadway departures from West Virginia’s rural and mountain roads
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Inadequate occupant protection
- Aggressive driving, racing, or highway rage
- Speeding in city or country roads.
If you or one of yours are injured in an auto accident, you deserve and need the compensation that makes your life whole again.
3 keys to getting the compensation you deserve after an accident:
Injured in an auto injury accident, you are entitled to get compensation for your pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and your loss of enjoyment of life.
If serious injuries diminish the relationship with a married spouse, your spouse may seek damages for loss of consortium (physical and emotional intimacy and services). So, what should you do?
- Take care of yourself. You should seek medical attention immediately for yourself and your passengers. Where serious injuries are obvious, you should call 9-1-1 for medical first responders. Where injuries are less obvious or appear hours or days after the accident, you must see a doctor, especially if you are feeling pain, discomfort, dizziness, numbness, or more. The sooner you begin a record of medical care, the better.
- Get the facts. Using your smartphone or another camera, you should start taking pictures of the accident damage to vehicle and people. You will need a record of bills, charges, and other transactions related to the accident and injuries. So, you should keep notes, receipts, emails, insurance records, and so on. Be specific about your pain, progress or insufficient progress with therapy, experience with prescription medications, travel expenses to care, and more. Also, if your vehicle is a lemon that falls under warranty, you can hire a reliable lawyer to fight for your compensation.
- Hire an auto accident attorney. Trying to get the compensation you deserve after an accident is not a do-it-yourself project. Only a professional auto accident attorney has the experience to navigate the ins and outs of the insurance business and court system. You need their help to:
- Interview the investigating officer.
- Review the accident report.
- Interview witnesses.
- Optimize your medical records.
- Review your medical bills.
- Communicate with the insurance company.
- Determine current and future losses.
- Negotiate a settlement.
- Take your case to court if necessary.
Huffington Post warns, “To sum it up: an auto accident is not what you expect to happen daily but when it does, you need to stay calm. Never admit your fault unless you want your statements to be used against you. Never sign anything until you consult with your attorney.”
If you are injured in an auto accident, regardless of fault, you deserve compensation for the pain and injury associated with the injury and for losses in your ability to work and resume your lifestyle But, you cannot do it without professional help