It is not unusual for an auto insurance company to deny your claim following an accident. Do not panic or fear that the company will not pay expenses for your car repair or personal injuries. Our Winston Salem car accident attorney is here to help you understand the insurance claim process and determine if a legal case is appropriate. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at 336-727-9886.
How Does the At-Fault Drivers Insurance Policy Work?
Are you wondering why you can not get the other driver’s insurance adjuster to call you back, or why they keep asking questions that seem irrelevant and silly to you? They are wondering how long they can keep you running around in circles. It seems that their goal is to bug you at work with constant badgering and harassment. Is their goal to keep bothering you? To keep calling you when you are not allowed personal phone calls, or to keep you on the phone prolonged periods of time? We believe that at times that is the goal. Insurance carriers will certainly not admit to this, but it does seem to be true.
What we know is that they do take their time to settle claims. This can be very hard on the injured that cannot get their cars repaired, or their medical bills paid. They cannot return to work due to injuries, which they cannot get addressed because they cannot pay the physicians. When the insurer becomes difficult to work with, like this case when they are delaying payment, it becomes necessary to consult a legal opinion. A client cannot put themselves at financial or medical risk to avoid legal pursuit. At that point, they must seek the help of an attorney that specializes in accidents.
How Does the Not-At-Fault Driver’s Policy Work?
You, presumably, are the not-at-fault driver. You are the one who is wondering why the at-fault driver’s insurance is calling and trying to confuse you. Your story was clear and factual at the scene of the accident. The responding officer knew that you were the victim of the accident and reported it as such. Somewhere after that, there appeared to be some confusion and the other driver reported that the accident was your fault. Your detailed account, and the police report at the scene agreed that it was not. If the accident was not your fault, you should work to make sure that the blame is properly assigned, so it is not on your permanent record. You do not want to pay an increased insurance premium for an accident that was not your responsibility. You may not be able to get this issue cleared through driver services, or insurance. In this instance, you may have to retain an attorney to help you get your record corrected.
How Do I Prove Who Is At Fault?
In North Carolina, a strict contributory negligence rule is the law we follow. According to this law, you can only recover damages if you are determined to have absolutely zero contribution to the accident. There will be no recovery if you are at fault by any percentage. We advise you not to apologize or say I’m sorry at the scene, no matter how badly you feel for the other driver or passengers.
There are four requirements for determining fault in any vehicle accident.
- Duty of Care – Every driver owes every other driver an equal amount of care on the road.
- Breach of Duty of Care – The other driver did not fulfill his legal duty of care.
- Causation – The breach of duty of care caused the accident.
- Damages – Your damages are a result of the accident caused by the breach of duty of care.
What Damages Can I Recover?
Even if the insurance carrier pays for your car repairs, there are additional damages that can be collected. There are more than just car repairs that should be collected on. We all contribute towards those expenses on a regular basis in our insurance coverage each month. The benefits are available for anyone we injure and are therefore available for anyone who injures us. The damages available are:
These are actual financial costs you have incurred as a result of the accident. These may include:
- Vehicle repair/replacement
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages and future lost wages
These damages are sometimes known as pain and suffering. They may include:
- Permanent scarring or disfigurement, or loss of a limb
- Loss of a bodily function
- Terminal condition secondary to the accident
These are damages for negligent or malicious intent. We must prove this accident was with malicious intent or occurred due to sheer negligent behavior of the other driver. If he has a history of this behavior against you or others, we will present to the court.
What Else Do I Need To Know to Do?
You need to know that if you hire the McIver Law Firm, we will be there for you. All injury cases receive a free consultation. If you need us to, we will come to you to make your situation as comfortable as possible. We firmly believe that if you hired a lawyer, you deserve to speak to that lawyer, that’s why every client receives the direct number of their attorney. We have support staff available 24 / 7. Call us at 336-727-9886 or complete the contact form found here. We will take your call and offer our assistance.