Knowing that you can be entitled to compensation for your damages if a vehicle accident causes your injuries in Las Vegas is helpful. But before you can sue in civil court, you must demonstrate liability, prove the accident's cause, and quantify your damages. It implies that to obtain the compensation you are due, you must go through a protracted legal process. Cases involving auto accidents are frequently complicated. What you do immediately following the accident can affect your eligibility for compensation. You must discuss this complex process with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney to avoid errors that could harm your case. Dallas Horton & Associates can support you throughout the procedure. We can fight for you until you receive your due settlement.
An Overview of Personal Injury Laws in Nevada
Accidents often occur at the worst possible times. You are never prepared for an accident, forcing you to spend money you do not even have on personal requirements, medical care, and repairs and replacements. Major auto accidents can have devastating effects. You will be left accumulating significant losses due to the serious physical harm and destruction they cause. You could need intensive care and a long healing period during which you will not do gainful work. Knowing that personal injury law is in place to assist in such circumstances is helpful. These statutes protect you against losses brought on by someone else's negligence.
But you must demonstrate that another party was at fault for the accident that resulted in your injuries to be eligible for compensation. Finding the accident's cause and the accountable person comes first. While some car accidents result from one negligent party, others result from multiple negligent parties. You must bring a civil lawsuit against the responsible party/parties in a civil court. The judge will order the party or parties at fault to pay you for your damages if they rule in favor of your claim.
You must also demonstrate your damages in court to be eligible for compensation. You must prove that you have suffered physical harm. To qualify for payment, you must also show that you have suffered property damage, lost income, or lost earning ability. The judge will grant your damages if your claim is valid and you have offered evidence for all your losses. But you will forfeit the chance to obtain compensation if you cannot prove your case.
Understanding the dos and don'ts following a car crash in Las Vegas is crucial. According to Nevada personal injury regulations, you must take specific steps before submitting a compensation claim in court. Additionally, some tactics could raise your chances of submitting a successful claim. You should be aware of these to increase your chances of obtaining total compensation for your damages. You could also seek advice and assistance from a knowledgeable personal injury attorney. Your attorney will expedite the legal procedure for you, counsel you on your options, and assist you in advocating for what is right.
The following are some of the most crucial things you need to do following an automobile accident:
Stop Your Vehicle
You must stop your vehicle at or close to the accident scene if you have been in a vehicle accident. You must share your personal and insurance information with other accident participants once you have stopped at the site. That could save you from facing hit-and-run charges. You could still face hit-and-run charges if you flee from an accident scene, even if you are not at fault for the accident.
Make sure you do not impede traffic when you stop your car. For example, you can park your vehicle in a safe spot on the side of the road. Stop cautiously as well to prevent causing another accident at the scene. Never stop in a place where other accident participants can not see you. Ensure you have seen them, spoken with them, and received their contact information.
Stopping at an accident scene makes the police's job relatively straightforward. When everyone involved in the accident is at the scene, it aids investigators in figuring out the accident's cause and next steps. You are only permitted to leave the scene in the event of a medical emergency. For example, you can head straight to the nearest emergency room if you were critically hurt in an accident. Also, if you have a seriously ill passenger in your vehicle, their condition could worsen if you stop and wait at the scene until the police arrive.
Assess the Situation and Offer Assistance
Stopping at an accident scene will allow you to assess the situation and swiftly help anyone hurt. A few people will likely sustain catastrophic injuries in a significant car accident. In that situation, make a police accident complaint over the phone. Police officers called to an accident site arrive with an ambulance to ensure the injured receive proper medical care before their conditions deteriorate.
Allow someone to take care of your injuries if you are one of the critically injured. Make a note of your injuries' severity and the location of your injuries on your body. You should also take notice of the injuries of all the passengers in your car. Despite your likely shaking and confusion, it is crucial to maintain your composure. You can do that to avoid making poor choices that could hurt your chances of winning your due compensation.
You could step out of your car to better assess the situation if your injuries are insignificant. Take a look at every vehicle that was involved in the collision. Note the extent of the damage. Observe the area for any additional property damage. Ensure you have a clear mental image of the accident scene since it will be helpful when gathering and preparing evidence.
Call The Police
Regardless of how minor the collision can be, the law mandates you call the police right away. In an accident scene, the police perform crucial roles that include the following:
Providing Medical Assistance
An accident is likely to result in physical harm to someone. What you need first after an accident is medical attention. Since police officers are skilled in first aid, they can provide care before an ambulance arrives. However, as indicated, an ambulance will likely accompany the police to a vehicle accident scene. As the police secure the location to prevent loss of evidence, the medical team will provide medical care to those who have sustained injuries.
Securing the Scene
Evidence is crucial in any case involving a car collision. The police will need unaltered proof to show liability and demonstrate the cause of the accident. They must protect the accident area as soon as possible for this reason. If that does not happen, a ton of evidence can be lost, making it difficult to establish liability and obtain compensation for your damages.
The police will also secure the location and provide a favorable environment for you and other witnesses to give their statements. Be aware that traffic around an accident scene will increase as people rush to help the injured. The police must show up as soon as possible following the collision to contain the situation.
Investigating the Accident
The police's job at the accident scene will also include conducting an investigation. Before permitting the public to enter the accident scene, they must determine the accident's cause and any potential liable parties. The authorities will need to speak with everyone involved in the accident. Additionally, they will talk with witnesses. They will immediately gather any forensic evidence and write a thorough report.
The police report is crucial in cases involving auto accidents. You can use a copy of that report as evidence in your lawsuit against the responsible party. The police report will back your claim and give you the ammunition you need to fight for the settlement you are entitled to if the investigation by the police reveals that a specific person was at fault for the accident.
The Content of the Police Report
When the police arrive at the accident scene, they will carry out several activities, including interviewing you and other accident victims, speaking with anyone who could have witnessed the accident, inspecting the vehicles involved in the accident, taking pictures, and even measuring distances. These activities give the police the required data to compile an in-depth accident report. The report, which is essentially a recap of the incident, will include the following details:
- The day, time, place, and date of the accident.
- Details of everyone involved in the accident, including their name, age, residence, phone number, insurance information, and any other identifying information.
- Identification details for anyone who could have witnessed the accident.
- The accident's nature and scope.
- The type and extent of the damage to the affected cars.
- Statements made by those affected by the accident and witnesses.
- A diagram of the accident site.
- Weather conditions, street lights, and specifics of the road where the accident happened.
- Possible liable party or parties.
- Whether anyone broke the law.
Even if the collision is minor, call the police immediately since doing so is a legal requirement. Even if you were the only person in the crash, you still need to call the police. Law enforcement will assist you if you are hurt and unable to seek medical assistance.
Seek Medical Treatment
You could feel lost, uncertain, and unable to make wise judgments after a vehicle accident. If you feel fine after the accident, you could be inclined to disregard the need for medical attention. That is a terrible idea. Even if you do not believe you have sustained an injury, you must seek medical care as soon as possible following the accident. Some injuries take time to show symptoms.
Additionally, you could be in shock right after the accident and not be experiencing any pain. That does not imply that you are not injured. Allowing a medical practitioner to examine you will enable you to determine whether you have been wounded.
EMTs will arrive at the scene once they are contacted or after you call the police. Let them check you out. Some people choose not to receive care because they already have a personal physician or a preferred hospital. That is also a bad idea. Other people, including your insurance provider, will believe you are not injured if you avoid medical attention. Once you file your compensation claim, they can use that notion against you.
Keep in mind that insurance companies are in the business of making money. They will employ a variety of strategies to avoid covering your losses. They can use your refusal to seek medical attention as evidence in court to refute any subsequent claims that you were hurt. They can assert, for example, that you were hurt later on, not in the accident.
Be careful not to underrate the severity of your injuries. Do not mention your discomfort to anyone, even if it is slight. Somebody, like an insurance adjuster, can ask how you are feeling. If they do, avoid going into specifics about how or where you were hurt. Let a medical professional examine you and note your injuries. Only then can you tell anyone the extent of the injuries you have sustained.
Remember that the court will only award damages if you can prove your personal injury claim with convincing evidence. For this reason, you should begin gathering information about the accident as soon as possible. Once the general public can access an accident scene, evidence can quickly disappear. Be sure to gather the evidence as soon as the accident occurs.
It helps to know the type of proof you will need to back up your vehicle accident claim. For example, you can record images and videos of the accident site, the damage to the other vehicles, and your injuries. These images can prove the severity of the accident and your injuries. You can use pictures and videos to support your claim if the insurance company tries to minimize injuries or car damage.
Pictures can occasionally be used to determine the accident's cause and the responsible party’s involvement. For example, you can record skid markings, the locations of the involved vehicles, and vehicle damage to help reconstruct the collision. A photograph demonstrates whether the driver failed to yield, moved too quickly, or applied emergency brakes.
You can better recall the accident's type and severity with pictures. It is possible to forget some specifics regarding the accident, mainly if many other events occur before you submit a civil lawsuit. By viewing photos and videos of the accident scene, you can keep your memory sharp and remember essential details supporting your case.
If you have suffered severe bodily injuries, it could be difficult for you to gather proof. If so, you can enlist the help of another person to take pictures and videos for you. It is crucial to ensure you have recent, credible evidence about the accident to build a strong case against the person at fault.
Contact Your Insurance Provider
Drivers are required by law to have insurance to protect themselves and their cars in an accident. Insurance carriers offer various coverage options depending on drivers' preferences and statutory requirements. If you have auto insurance, you must report any accidents to your insurance company within 48 hours of the incident. As a result, you must make that call immediately following the accident or arrange for someone else to do it on your behalf. If you report the crash after 48 hours, the insurance provider can refuse to pay you for your damages.
The insurance provider will send an insurance adjuster to investigate the accident as soon as you report it. The adjuster will contact you to ask about the collision. It is best to allow them to communicate with your attorney. Keep in mind that insurance companies are for-profit corporations. They will make a concerted effort to find excuses not to pay you for your damages. For example, the adjuster could use deception to make you accept fault or minimize your injuries. They will record your communication and use it against you in court.
Send a demand letter to your insurance provider when you are prepared to file a compensation claim in court, including the circumstances of the accident, your injuries, and the losses you have suffered. The adjuster’s investigation results allow the insurer to approve or reject your demand. You can prepare to file a lawsuit in civil court if the company denies your claim. The company will either accept your claim or make a lesser offer of compensation if it accepts it. Wait until you are sure that the request is what you deserve regarding reimbursement for your damages before you quickly accept an out-of-court settlement with the insurance company.
Report The Accident To DMV
The Department of Motor Vehicles, or DMV, is responsible for issuing driver's licenses and car registrations. You must legally notify the DMV immediately after your car is involved in an accident. You should do so within ten days of the accident. You should include the following information in your notice:
- The accident's nature.
- The extent of any injuries sustained by anyone who was hurt in the collision.
- If a person perished in the crash.
- The kinds of damage to the vehicles involved, but only if they cost more than $1,000.
Once you file a lawsuit in court, notifying the DMV will help support your claim. If you do not report an accident to the DMV, you could lose your driving privileges for six months to a year, among other serious repercussions.
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
Nevada's personal injury statutes are complicated and challenging to understand independently. You should retain an attorney immediately after the accident. This way, your attorney will ensure you know all the dos and don'ts and work with you to submit a successful claim against the at-fault party.
After a car collision, you will probably feel rattled, disoriented, and unable to think straight. You need support, particularly if you require immediate medical attention due to major bodily injuries. One way to safeguard your interests and yourself is to contact an attorney right after the accident.
Your attorney will help you in many ways, including ensuring you receive proper medical care for your injuries. They will ensure that you receive immediate medical treatment and a thorough medical report from a qualified medical professional. They will also ensure that you obtain comprehensive medical records as evidence to support your claim.
Additionally, your attorney will help you gather evidence at the accident scene. They will gather fresh evidence from the site and keep it safe until it is required to support your claim. If you have suffered severe injuries and cannot gather evidence yourself, your attorney is the right person to handle your evidence.
While healing from your injuries, your attorney will begin working on your compensation claim. They will investigate the incident, pinpoint its origin, and establish who is legally responsible. They could even consult an accident expert to help determine the actual cause of the accident.
On your behalf, your attorney will communicate with the insurance provider. Additionally, they will help you make the best decisions while defending your rights and battling alongside you for fair compensation.
Find an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me
Have you or someone you love suffered injuries and losses in a car crash in Las Vegas?
Knowing what to do following a vehicle accident is critical to improving your chances of winning your case and recovering compensation for your damages. You can obtain guidance and support from an experienced personal injury attorney on the legal process, dos and don'ts. Additionally, your attorney will advise and encourage you until you obtain a favorable outcome for your case.
At Dallas Horton & Associates, we could accompany you on the entire journey, defending your rights and managing your case until you are happy with the outcome. Contact us at 702-820-5917, and let us help you navigate the legal system more efficiently.