If you’ve been in an accident and are wondering about the insurance claim settlement process and timeline, you’re not alone. Everyone involved in the incident wants to know how long it will take to work through the paperwork, phone calls, and added headache of resolving issues around damaged vehicles, insurance, and healing from injuries. It […]
Does Your Auto Accident Entitle You to Financial Compensation?
You may be wondering if the car crash you were involved in makes you eligible for compensation for your personal injuries and property damage. In North Carolina, the driver that is found to be at fault is financially responsible for any damage done during an accident. If you find yourself to be injured in a car accident in Charlotte, North Carolina, and you are not at fault for the auto accident, you will want to seek financial compensation.
If no one was injured and there was little to no damage to the vehicles, it may be easier and less complicated for you to file a claim with the liable driver's insurance. You can even file with your own insurance company, your carrier can handle the damage to your vehicle and subrogate against the other carrier to get its money back. This removes you from the process of dealing with the other person’s insurance company altogether. If your case seems to be more complicated, for example this is dispute for who is at fault or it was a hit and run scenario, you may want to have an experienced lawyer who deals with personal injury and auto accidents.
How Do I Know When to Seek Legal Compensation for My Auto Accident?
You can choose to seek legal representation if you find yourself in one or more of the following situations:
- that the insurance company is offering you less than what you need to cover your bills
- the insurance company is being uncooperative and refusing to listen to your claim
- offering you a low settlement
- refusal to negotiate
- Medical bils that exceed $2,000
- Property damage greater than $2,000
- Your auto accident has left you unable to work
- You have an permanent injury
- There is a dispute to who is at fault for the auto accident
- There is a discrepancy in the police report
What Type of Compensation Am I Entitled To Following a Car Accident In Charlotte, NC?
According to the North Carolina General statute, 44-50 Medical bills constitute any drugs, medical supplies, hospital services, or services provided by a doctor, nurse, dentist, or hospital to treat the injuries caused by an auto accident. As long as these claims are deemed reasonable and necessary, you are eligible for reimbursement.
Sometimes when you are involved in an auto accident you are so severely injured that you are unable to work. To be compensated for your lost wages you must keep extensive documentation of all of the work that you have missed. If you are a contracted employee you must note all potential work you may have missed out on due to your car accident. You must provide proof of income, past and present medical records, doctor's notes, stubs from paychecks, the number of days you have missed from work, and/or the number of meetings you were unable to attend.
Two questions that need to be asked for lost wages and medical bills are:
- Is the injury causally related to the car accident?
- Was the medical treatment you received reasonable and necessary?
Lost Earning Capacity
Has the injury from the auto accident made it impossible for you to return to work in the field you were in prior to the accident? You may be eligible for lost earning capacity. Lost earning capacity can be somewhat hard to prove. To figure out your lost earning capacity you must multiply your pay rate by the amount of work you have missed and will miss in the future. Things to incorporate would be your gross annual income, annual raises, and promotions that you would have been eligible for if you had not been in a car crash.
Pain and Suffering
Determining pain and suffering can be more subjective. You will want to take copious notes on how you are feeling, documenting your pain level daily. Record any medications you have to take due to your auto accident. You should keep records of your medical visits, written opinions, or statement provided by the medical professionals you have seen since your accident. Testimonies from your friends and family member of how the car wreck has affected your daily life. If you have been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, or PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) since your automobile accident you will want written documentation of that as well.
(Permanent Partial Impairment Rating “PPI” and/or Per Diem argument)
Permanent injury is just as it sounds, the injury you have sustained will never go away. It can cause significant limitations. Some examples are amputation, broken bones, disfigurement, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, vision loss, loss of organs, death, and/or psychological effects.
Punitive damages are caused by gross negligence (reckless or outrageous behavior, will and wanton or reckless indifference) meaning they were acting with reckless disregard for the safety of others.
In North Carolina, punitive damages are sought to prevent others from doing harm to others by doing the same behavior again. An example would be driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Punitive damages are capped in North Carolina at up to three times the amount awarded in compensatory damages or $250,000, whichever amount is greater.
How Can Rosensteel Fleishman Help You?
Rosensteel Fleishman has been practicing law since 2005 in the Charlotte area. They can offer you experience and expertise when it comes to your personal injury/auto accident claim. When you hire Rosensteel Fleishman they handle all of the work between you and your insurance company. They are experienced at going to trial and won’t accept the bare minimum offer. They will ensure that you receive all of the money that is owed to you. At the end of the trial, they will offer you an itemized statement explaining where money was spent and why you are receiving the amount you are receiving. They do not spend money on advertising. Their clients usually find them by word of mouth and client testimonials. They are excellent trial attorneys and have served many people in Charlotte and the surrounding areas. They are patient and will take the time to answer all of your legal questions and explain all the options that you have concerning your North Carolina car accident.
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