Car Accident FAQs
At The Bruning Law Firm, our St. Louis, MO car accident attorneys pride ourselves on providing excellent service to our clients. This often means sitting down with Missouri car accident victims to talk about what they’ve been through and answer any questions they have about their case.
ST. LOUIS CAR ACCIDENTS FAQs
Over the years, our knowledgeable legal team has secured millions of dollars in compensation for clients who were severely injured by someone else’s negligence in car crashes and other accidents. As members of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers organization and the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, we are dedicated to providing outstanding client service and to aggressively pursuing the full and fair compensation you and your family need. Please use this resource to help answer your questions. If you do not find the answers you are looking for, please see Top 5 St Louis Car Accident FAQs and MO Frequently Asked Car Accident Questions.
Here are some of the most common questions we receive about St. Louis car accident cases:
Stop, call 911 or your local emergency number, and talk to the police. The police can launch an investigation to find the other driver. As soon as you can, notify your insurance company about the accident. Your insurance may offer compensation if you have uninsured or underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage in your policy. This coverage may also be available if you are hit by a driver who does not have insurance.
As soon as possible. Your insurance policy may have a time limit for reporting accidents. If you miss this deadline, the insurance company will deny your claim. Just as in your conversation with police, when you talk to your insurance company, stick to the facts. If you are pressured to “take the blame” or to blame someone else, simply say that you want to see what the results of the investigation are before you say anything else.
Say no until you talk to your lawyer. You are not required to give a recorded statement, and recorded statements are often used against people who are seeking coverage after a car accident. Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions in a way that makes your answer more likely to hurt your claim – no matter what you say. They are also trained to avoid paying claims when they can. Cooperate with your insurance company by notifying them and reporting the facts, but do not give a statement until you talk to your car accident attorney.
You are not required to speak to the other driver’s insurance company. Simply say that you will not speak to them and give them your lawyer’s name and contact information. The more you say to the insurance agent for the other driver, the more likely you are to give information he or she can use to make your claim harder – even without realizing that you are doing so. Likewise, do not release your medical records to the other driver’s insurance company or send any information without talking to your car accident lawyer first.
Although road, traffic, and weather conditions can be contributing causes, most accidents occur as the result of reckless behaviors on the part of other drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, common causes of car accidents include:
- Speeding and driving too fast for conditions
- Disregarding stop signs and traffic signals
- Aggressive driving, such as tailgating and failing to yield
- Distracted driving, such as using cellphones or texting
- Falling asleep behind the wheel, or driving while excessively fatigued
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including over-the-counter and prescription medication
In addition to notifying your insurance company, see a doctor as soon as you can after the car accident. Your doctor can determine how badly you were injured and prescribe a course of treatment to maximize your chances of recovery. Follow your doctor’s instructions closely. Also, find a secure place to keep all your paperwork related to the accident. Paperwork might include things like police or accident reports, letters from your insurance company, copies of medical bills, car repair bills from your mechanic, and a list of the mileage you drive to and from doctor’s appointments. You and your car accident attorney can use this information to establish the full extent of compensation you are owed.
My insurance claim was denied (or the other driver’s insurance is denying liability). What should I do?
The easiest way for another driver’s insurance company to avoid paying a claim is to deny that the driver was liable. If this happens, you will have to prove that the other driver was at fault and that you are owed compensation. If the other driver’s insurance denies liability, or if your own insurance company refuses to pay the claim for any reason, talk to an experienced St. Louis car accident attorney immediately.
Unfortunately, many people suffer lifelong impairments as the result of an auto accident. Chronic pain, problems with mobility, difficulty thinking or remembering, anxiety, depression, and traumatic flashbacks are all common long-term results of a car accident injury, and all of them can be disabling.
In this situation, a car crash lawyers help is invaluable. For you, full compensation may include not only the expenses you’ve already paid, but the losses you will continue to suffer in the form of additional medical bills, any necessary assistance with your daily life, and lost wages if you are unable to work or must change jobs due to your injuries. Your auto accident lawyer will make sure that the full extent of your current and future losses is clear, so that you are more likely to receive all the compensation you need.
As a passenger, you are entitled to pursue compensation for injuries you suffer, either through the driver of the vehicle you were in or through other drivers involved in the accident. Protect yourself by making sure that the police are notified and an accident report is filed, and make sure to get insurance and contact information for all those involved.
First, stay put. Leaving the scene of an accident could result in you facing criminal charges. Instead, call 911 or your local emergency number. If you can, move your vehicle off the road and encourage injured people to move out of traffic. (However, do not move anyone who is unconscious or is complaining of head, neck, or back pain.) Gather information, such as the contact information of others involved the accident, the other driver’s insurance information, photos, or notes about what you remember from the accident.
Yes. When you talk to police or other law enforcement officers, however, always stick to the facts: what happened, when and where it happened, and who was involved. Don’t accuse someone else of being at fault, or try to take the blame yourself. Wait to see whether there were any facts you don’t know about that explain what really went wrong.
You Have Questions. We Have Answers.
Located in St. Louis, The Bruning Law Firm serves clients in both Missouri and Illinois.We approach each car accident case with the goal of securing the full and fair compensation our clients need.And our commitment to transparency and teamwork means you always know what’s happening with your case.
Contact us today to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
For more information, use these resources: