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If you have recently been in a car accident in Ohio, you may have a lot of questions about what kind of legal options you have and whether you should take action.
In the event that you or one of your passengers was seriously injured in your accident, you could be entitled to financial compensation to help cover medical bills and other expenses.
By filing a claim or lawsuit against the insurance company of the at-fault party, you could receive the compensation you deserve along with justice for your injuries.
Contact LegalFinders today for a free case review and to be connected with a top-quality car accident attorney in Ohio.
Not everyone who gets into a car accident needs a car accident lawyer in order to proceed with a claim or lawsuit.
For very simple cases, people may be able to comfortably file their own claim. For most cases, however, an attorney can make the legal process much more comfortable.
You may need an Ohio car accident lawyer if:
According to the Ohio Department of Public Safety, there were 265,512 accidents in Ohio in 2022, with 1,275 fatalities.
The majority of accidents in Ohio occur in the state’s major cities.
Roads in Ohio can be dangerous for a few different reasons, with potholes, congested roads, frequent construction, and winter weather conditions being just a few of the main culprits.
Most dangerous highways in Ohio include:
Midwestern states are known for having a lot of speeding drivers on the roads, and Ohio is no exception.
Top areas for speeding citations in Ohio include:
When it comes to seeking financial compensation for car accident damages there are two options that you can legally seek; the first is a car accident claim, followed by a lawsuit.
Because Ohio is an at-fault state for auto insurance, you can immediately file a claim for compensation with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
If Ohio were instead a no-fault insurance state, someone would have to file a claim first with their own insurance provider.
In case your claim does not reach a settlement, do not fear that you are out of options to get the compensation you deserve. Your next step is to file a car accident lawsuit.
One of the major benefits of a car accident lawsuit is that a verdict award can be significantly higher than a settlement award, however, lawsuits can take much longer to reach completion.
While you are not legally required to hire a lawyer in Ohio for a car accident, you may be wondering if it would be a good idea to do so.
Reasons to hire a lawyer for an Ohio car accident claim include:
If you are still undecided, it may be a good idea to speak with multiple lawyers and discuss how they would handle your case if hired.
A personal injury attorney can provide a lot of benefits when taking on a car accident case.
Not everyone who is interested in filing a car accident claim or lawsuit is actually eligible for one, but a free consultation through a reputable Ohio law firm can help you determine your eligibility pretty quickly.
Law firms almost always offer initial consultations for free so people can determine their eligibility without any financial risk.
Even if the cause of your car accident seems obvious and unquestionable to you, there may be angles that you have not considered.
The cause of your accident is important, as it relates heavily to fault and negligence, and a car accident attorney will have previous experience in determining car accident causes.
Fault is an extremely important component to any car accident case, but particularly in states with at-fault insurance laws.
The presence of fault will essentially determine the roles of claimant and defendant for a car accident case.
Negligence occurs when a person’s careless actions result in harm to another person. Most people who are negligent do not intend to be negligent.
When it comes to car accident law, a person must be found negligent in addition to being found at fault in order to be liable for the accident.
Your medical records will be used as evidence for your case to show both the extent of your injuries and the extent of any related medical expenses.
Common car accident injuries include:
It is very important that your car accident claim be filed in a timely manner, before the statute of limitations expires and you are no longer able to take legal action.
The statute of limitations for personal injury cases varies across states, and is two years in the state of Ohio.
Your car accident attorney will act as your legal communicator and negotiate with insurance adjusters and the lawyers for the defendant until a fair settlement is agreed upon.
Without a personal injury attorney for representation during this part of the claims process, a person could easily lose out on the maximum compensation they deserve.
Only in rare cases do care accident cases end up in court before a judge or jury, but in the event that yours does it will be important to have a strong and confident lawyer representing you.
Both parties generally want to avoid going to court, as it can be expensive and time-consuming, so in most cases the negotiations will end up with a fair settlement.
Types of car accident cases that lawyers handle include:
While you may be tempted to call an accident attorney immediately after an accident, there are a few steps you can take first.
According to Ohio law, an accident only needs to be reported to the police if the accident resulted in a fatality, an injury that required medical care, or property damage of more than $1,000.
Even if none of these apply to you, you may still want to report the accident in case damages or injuries turn out to be worse than originally thought.
Always seek medical attention immediately following a car accident, and encourage anyone else who was your passenger in the accident to do the same, even if they feel okay.
When seeking medical treatment, make sure to keep detailed records — these documents may be important evidence later on for your case.
A car accident can be a traumatic experience, and you are likely not thinking about how to prepare for your claim immediately afterward.
If you are in a good physical and mental state after your accident, try to gather a few items that might serve as evidence later on.
Important evidence from the accident scene can include:
While you don’t necessarily need to be friendly with the at-fault driver, you will need to speak with them enough to gather a bit of important information.
Items to collect from the at-fault driver include:
In addition to taking down your own personal statement while the accident is fresh in your mind, you should try to speak with as many witnesses of the accident as you can.
These witness statements can not only serve as evidence later on, but they also may give you a better understanding of your accident and potential causes for it.
There are numerous benefits to using a car accident lawyer after a car wreck in Ohio that can make finding a good lawyer worthwhile.
At the start of your case, you will want to make sure you have an accurate assessment of all collision damages for your accident.
Since you will be seeking financial compensation for all damages listed on your claim or lawsuit, all damages need to be listed and assessed.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, expert witnesses may be necessary to provide testimony during the discovery stage of your case.
Expert witnesses who may be called on for a car accident case can include medical experts and also meteorologists, traffic experts, and road construction experts.
During the discovery process, both parties will present their evidence and the witnesses that will be called. This allows both sides to prepare and prevents any surprises.
When discovery is thorough and accurate and both sides are allowed to prepare, it is more likely that the case will reach a settlement — and in a more timely manner, too.
Insurance companies play an important role in every car accident case, but they may try to take advantage of you or trick you to get out of paying what they owe.
With a good lawyer on your side, your rights will always be protected and you will have someone to speak for you and stand up for you in all negotiations.
Car accident cases can be complex, so it is important that lawyers have a good understanding of Ohio car accident laws.
Relevant Ohio car accident laws include:
A car accident attorney can do all the hard work for you while you relax and recover from any injuries you incurred from the accident.
They will, of course, update you at every step and ensure that you are always in the know about any important developments in your case.
Research has shown that car accident settlement outcomes are consistently better and settlement awards are higher in cases where professional legal representation is involved.
If you are looking for the highest settlement or verdict amount possible for your Ohio car accident case, it really is in your best interest to work with an auto accident attorney.
Choosing the right car accident lawyer is an important decision, as they will be with you every step of the way throughout the claims process.
Tips for choosing a quality Ohio car accident lawyer include:
It is common for car accident lawyers in all states to charge on what is known as a contingency fee basis. This means that your legal services are essentially free until your case reaches a settlement or verdict.
Once your case reaches a settlement, your lawyer would then receive a percentage of the award amount, usually between 30 and 40%.
As the victim of a car accident, you deserve compensation for the bills you have incurred and the pain and suffering you have experienced.
Car accident victims seeking compensation can contact LegalFinders to be connected with an experienced Ohio car accident attorney who can help.
To discuss your eligibility and get started today with a free consultation, reach out to us on our 24/7 toll-free hotline.
Some of the most common causes for car accidents in Ohio include distracted driving, speeding, reckless driving, and driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Other potential causes for car accidents include inexperienced drivers, road rage, and weather-related road conditions.
Every individual law firm has its own rules about how services are charged and paid for, but most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis.
This means that instead of paying upfront fees or an hourly cost, people instead pay out a percentage of their settlement award to their lawyer at the completion of the case.
While it is not a requirement to hire a lawyer after a car accident in Ohio, doing so can help ensure that your claim or lawsuit runs smoothly from start to finish.
A good car accident attorney will make sure your rights are protected, that all important deadlines are met, and that the evidence and testimony for your case is as strong as possible.
One of the best ways to find a car accident lawyer is to take recommendations from friends and family who have worked with an attorney they liked.
You can also find a top-quality personal injury lawyer at any time by contacting LegalFinders and taking part in a free case review.
There is no certain way to predict how long a car settlement will take in Ohio, as every case is unique and subject to many factors.
Some Ohio car accident claims take only a few months to reach a settlement, while others may instead take several years.
Ohio Department of Public Safety. “Statewide Crash Statistics.” Retrieved from: https://publicsafety.ohio.gov/what-we-do/our-programs/ohio-traffic-safety-office-sa/traffic-safety-reports/crash-statistics.