We all know that meeting with a vehicle accident can be a devastating and life-changing experience. The accident gets staggeringly worse when the victim of the crash is hit by a drunk driver. You not only have to tackle the suffering and injuries associated with the accident but also have to focus on making appointments with doctors.
Are you someone who has been injured by a drunk driver in Las Vegas? If yes, there are a few crucial steps that you need to take to safeguard your rights and obtain compensation. Check out the immediate steps to take soon after being hit by a drunk driver. Click here to visit their website.
While you are still at the scene of the accident…
- Stay put right there: The foremost thing that you need to remember after being involved in an accident and after your vehicle has stopped is to remain as silent and calm as you can. Never make the mistake of leaving the scene of the accident unless staying puts you at significant risk. Once you have analyzed the situation, call the police and medical services. A majority of the auto insurance companies will ask you to get in touch with the police in order to get your claims accepted.
- Click photos and videos of the scene of the crash: Whenever you’re all set for a civil case, videos and photographs happen to be an invaluable piece of evidence. Photos clicked at the right time and establish the conditions during the accident like the layout of the roadway, weather, obstacles that impacted the visibility, signs or other traffic devices, or construction activities.
- Get vital details about the eye-witnesses: The police are liable to do this but it is also vital for you to watch out for witnesses. However, you shouldn’t assume that the officers have recognized all witnesses and they have already made a list. Look for other witnesses and ask them whether they know any other witnesses.
During the months after the accident occurred…
- Get the copies of medical costs, repair costs, and other expenses: Since you have to show how the accident led to economic problems in your life, both you and your personal injury attorney should gather all the invoices and records that are proof of all property damage, medical care, and lost wages. Don’t forget that orthopedic devices, prescription medicines, and medical supplies are all eligible for being compensated.
- Ensure being a part of all legal hearings: It is highly vital to offer proof at hearings, trials, and other legal places where the at-fault party or the drunk driver is prosecuted. You should be present at the criminal court, and traffic court so as to be aware of everything.
So, whenever you’ve been a part of a car accident that has been caused by a drunk driver, never procrastinate. Keep in mind the Statute of Limitations as delaying could diminish the chances of winning a claim. Contact a DUI accident attorney and get things done quickly.
Should You Hire a Lawyer?
DUI crashes are different from other kinds of vehicular accidents. The at-fault driver may hire or be provided with a court-appointed attorney who will work hard to get the charges their client is facing dismissed. While the drunk driver who hit you may face a DUI charge, you should prove they were intoxicated, were under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and less safe in your case.
It is important to collect evidence including 911 recordings, camera recordings, toxicologic reports, eyewitness statements, and evidence from cars. Also, you should investigate whether the at-fault driver had a previous DUI conviction.
You can access some of the evidence under Nevada’s open records laws. But if the drunk driver has pending charges, you may not be able to access evidence from the prosecutor’s office or law enforcement until the pending case has been concluded. Thus, you may need to do your own investigation.
And since drunk driving is a dangerous and irresponsible behavior, cases that involve them usually have a higher verdict or settlement potential than regular vehicular accident cases. But insurers may offer less on such cases unless you have legal representation. These companies know that an attorney can get and present specific kinds of evidence that not anyone can access. This evidence can add value to your accident claim and lawsuit.
Avoiding the Traps Set by Insurance Providers
When an insurance representative approaches you to try to settle the claim as quickly as possible, they may ask you to sign medical releases or a settlement agreement. If you sustained injuries because of a drunk driver’s action, their insurer may pressure you into signing release forms. A medical release form will authorize them to access your medical history, which includes information not related to your current accident. Also, the representative may ask you to sign a document that releases their employer of any further obligation to you once you accept a settlement offer from them.
While it can be tempting to settle your claim fast, so you can get the cash you need, making a rush decision can cause you more problems down the road. In the early stage of your claim, you may still not know the nature and severity of your injuries. When you settle early and learn later that your injuries have long-term effects on your life, you are left with nothing to pay for your future needs. An attorney can help you secure a great deal before you agree to an offer from the insurance provider.
Keep in mind that insurance claims adjusters are trained to trick claimants. If you allow yourself to be fooled by them, you could admit to being partially responsible for the crash. In fact, you may end up saying something to reduce the value of your claim. To avoid this disaster, you should allow your attorney to handle all communications with the adjuster for you. Your lawyer will not settle for less than you truly deserve for your injuries and losses.