What Are My Legal Rights After An Auto Accident?

An auto accident can make a victim feel as if they have no control over the situation. The injuries, the medical bills, the property damage, the lost wages, and the crash itself may be out of the control of those who find themselves involved in a car accident, but there are legal rights victims have to regain control through seeking fair compensation.

How to Protect Your Rights After a Car Wreck in MO?

In the aftermath of a collision it is important to ensure that your legal rights are protected by documenting the scene and circumstances of the crash in order to pursue a claim for compensation. There are three main steps towards properly documenting the scene of an accident: talk to witnesses, call the police, take notes, and photograph the scene.1 When talking to witnesses you do not want to reveal any information that could appear as an admission of guilt, but it is important to get contact information and a sense of what the witness heard or seen with regards to the collision. Police reports are an important component to document the crash, provide official accounts of the scene, and include evidence of fault.2 photographing the physical scene is a solid form of evidence to show the scene, car damage, and obvious injuries.

Legal Rights After a Car Collision in Missouri

The most basic legal right victims of a car accident have after a collision is the right to pursue filing a claim against parties that are responsible or at fault for the accident; this requires the victim to prove the other driver was negligent or irresponsible. This same standard of proof is required regardless of what party is responsible for the accident or what is the direct cause of the accident; a liable party could include proving an auto manufacture did not recall a defective vehicle component or a city negligently maintained a roadway. Legal rights are effected by insurance company policies, the different forms of damages, and state specific rules or laws.

There are particular laws in each state that effect a car accident victim’s compensation and rights by making requirements for filing a claim, setting a statute of limitation, or limiting recovery amounts. For instance, in the State of Missouri, a personal injury claim must be brought within five years in a civil court and compensation is reduced for victims who share fault under the pure comparative fault rule.3 The State of Illinois who also uses a fault system has different laws such as a two year limit on filing a claim in civil court or a one year statute of limitation when the claim is against a city of county.4 The complexity that rules and laws create for protecting car accident victim’s legal rights makes hiring a car accident attorney an important step towards receiving the right damages from the right defendants.

Contact an Experienced St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer for a Free Consultation

If you have been involved in an auto accident, there are many different roadblocks and complications you may encounter on the path towards financial recovery. Discussing the circumstances of the crash and seeking the assistance of an experienced auto accident attorney can help you to determine what claims should be filed and protect your legal rights and interests. To contact an auto accident attorney for a free consultation please feel free to call the The Bruning Law Firm trial attorneys at 314-735-8100.


If you or someone you care about has been seriously injured in an auto accident, contact The Bruning Law Firm today. We provide the comprehensive, professional legal representation you deserve at a time when you need it most.

Call or contact our office online today to schedule a free consultation.


For more information, use these resources:


  1. http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/auto-accident/preserve-rights-compensation-after-accident.html
  2. Ibid.
  3. http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/personal-injury/laws-missouri.html
  4. http://www.alllaw.com/articles/nolo/personal-injury/laws-illinois.html
Contact the St. Louis car crash attorneys at the Bruning Law Firm today.