I’ve been injured in a car accident — what should I do first?
Get the immediate medical attention that you need first. Once you are stable, contact a lawyer as soon as possible.
Why do I need to contact an attorney after a car accident?
Your lawyer is the only person who is legally obligated to look after your interest after an accident. Insurance companies represent the individuals and/or companies that they insure, not you. Also, your lawyer will know how to gather and protect vital evidence for your case.
How much is my auto accident case worth?
The value of your case is dependent upon many factors, such as your diagnoses, your prognoses, unpaid bills, lost wages and whether you have permanent physical or mental limitations or losses. Every case is different and until all of the information needed is available, your lawyer will not be able to give you a proper estimate of the value of your case.
Should I give a statement to the other insurance company after a car accident?
No, you should not give any statements about an accident until you speak to your lawyer.
Who will pay my medical bills after a car accident?
In Pennsylvania, your medical bills are paid first by your automobile insurance company. If you do not own a car, the bills may be paid initially by the insurer of the car that you were occupying at the time of the accident. Bills in excess of the policy limits are claimed against the responsible party. In West Virginia, you may have “Med Pay” available on your auto insurance. If you do not have the coverage or do not own a car, the bills are ultimately claimable against the responsible party.
How long do I have to file a case after a car accident?
In PA, in general, you have 2 years from the date of the accident to file your claim. In WV, you also have 2 years from the date of your accident to file your claim. There are exceptions and additions to the general rules, however, so you should always consult with a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident.
How long do I have to file a claim after a worker’s comp injury?
You have 3 years from the date of injury to file your worker’s comp case.
Do I have to treat with a company Dr. after a work injury?
Yes, you may have to treat with a Dr. chosen by the worker’s comp insurance after an accident but there are exceptions. You should consult with a lawyer as soon as possible after a work injury.
How much is my worker’s comp case worth if I settle?
The settlement value of your worker’s comp case depends upon many factors, such as your average weekly wage, your prognoses, any permanent limitations and whether you are able to return to your old job. Each case is different and you should always consult with a lawyer before considering a lump sum settlement of your worker’s comp case.
The driver of the car that hit me did not have insurance, what do I do?
If you have uninsured motorist coverage on your auto insurance policy, you can still make a claim for damages suffered in a car accident.
The driver of the car that hit me does not have enough insurance to cover my injuries, what do I do?
If you have under insured motorist coverage on your auto insurance policy, you can make a claim for your damages that exceed the responsible party’s insurance limits.
What is a wrongful death claim?
This is a claim that certain heirs of yours can make against a party responsible for your death.
Do I have to go to court to receive a settlement for my car accident?
Not necessarily. While most cases do end in a settlement, it is not always possible. If there is no offer of settlement or if the offer is insufficient, it may be necessary to take your case to Court.
The insurance company offered me a settlement; do I even need a lawyer?
Technically you do not, but remember, only your lawyer will look after your interest and will know how to properly evaluate your case. You cannot rely upon or trust an insurance company to offer you a settlement that will fairly compensate you for all of your damages.
Can I recover my lost wages after being injured in a car accident?
Yes, lost wages are a component of damages. Your lost wages may be partially covered by your auto insurance company but, ultimately, the responsible party is responsible for your lost wages as a result of an accident.