If you have been injured in a serious automobile accident due to the negligence of another driver, you are entitled to file a personal injury claim against his or her automobile insurance company. Unfortunately, not all automobile insurance companies deal fairly with claimants. Many hide behind weak liability and medical arguments in an attempt to force you to take less than reasonable compensation. When this happens, you need a knowledgeable and aggressive car accident attorney to represent your interests. The Raleigh automobile accident lawyers of Maginnis Howard will try to help you negotiate an out-of-court settlement, but, if that fails, our firm will not hesitate to file a claim with the Courts and make the insurance company answer to a jury. To speak with one of our attorneys, call the firm at (919) 526-0450 or send an email using our contact page.
Your primary concern after an automobile accident should be to get better. You may need significant medical treatment, including surgery, and you typically will only have one opportunity to settle with the insurance company. Settling before you have completed treatment is rarely a good idea. In most cases, you should not settle until you have received all necessary medical treatment resulting from the automobile accident or, at a minimum, have a projection of future medical treatment.
Once you have recovered medically, you will need to identify all of the damages you have sustained which are recoverable under North Carolina negligence law. Those damages, of course, begin with your past and future medical expenses. If your injury occurred after October 1, 2011, you can pursue all amounts paid or owed for your medical treatment. This includes amounts paid by your health insurance provider. You can recover compensation for lost wages or loss of wage earning capacity. Other damages which are more difficult to calculate include:
- physical, mental, and emotional pain and suffering
- loss of enjoyment of life
- temporary and permanent disability and/or impairment
In some situations, such as those involving a drunk driver, a claimant may be entitled to punitive damages. This allows the jury to punish the at-fault driver monetarily. They may award damages of up to $250,000 or three times the claimant’s actual damages, whichever is greater.
After identifying your damages, you (or your attorney) must then determine from where you can recover the funds. This analysis usually begins with the at-fault driver’s liability insurance. The minimum liability limits in North Carolina are only $30,000.00, though. If your damages are, for example, $150,000.00, you would only be able to recover approximately 20% of your damages from the at-fault driver. In this scenario, you should determine the amount of your own Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage. If you have a larger policy that contains, $300,000 of UIM coverage, you could recover the remaining $120,000 from your own policy.
Representation for Raleigh Automobile Accident Injuries
The Raleigh automobile accident attorneys of Maginnis Law Howard represent clients involved in Wake County car collisions. Our firm offers free consultations and represents most cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you pay no attorneys’ fees until we make a recovery for you.
If you have been injured in an automobile accident in North Carolina, call the personal injury attorneys of Maginnis Howard. You can reach us at (919) 526-0450 or send an email using our contact page.