In a fender-bender, you might expect to file an insurance claim and get a check to repair your car’s damage. However, you might not know what to expect after a bad car accident that causes severe vehicle damage and leaves you with catastrophic, life-altering injuries.
After a severe car crash, you may expect to undergo medical treatment and rehabilitation while pursuing insurance and legal claims to recover compensation from those at fault for the accident. A seasoned car accident lawyer can help you through the recovery process by taking the stress of your legal claims off your shoulders.
What Is Considered a Serious Accident?
A serious car accident is any accident in which one or more car occupants suffered catastrophic or life-threatening injuries or one or more vehicles in the crash required extensive repairs or were declared “totaled” by the insurance company. Any car accident that results in a fatality would also qualify as a serious accident.
A serious car accident may include any crash that Nevada law requires drivers to report to the police or the DMV. Under the law, a driver must contact law enforcement or file a crash report for an accident that results in injury or death or causes damage to vehicles or other property with an apparent total value of $750 or more.
Severe Injuries Caused by Bad Car Accidents
Bad car accidents frequently cause severe, life-altering injuries for drivers and passengers. Examples of injuries that can make a car accident a “bad” or “serious” crash include:
• Broken bones
• Torn ligaments, tendons, or muscles
• Herniated spinal disc or dislocation of vertebrae
• Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
• Internal organ injuries and internal bleeding
• Puncture wounds
• Second- and third-degree burns from vehicle fires
• Degloving injuries (skin torn away under underlying muscle and bone)
• Facial injuries, including eye trauma
• Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries
• Amputation, dismemberment, or limb loss
Steps to Take After a Severe Car Accident
When you’ve had a bad car accident, you should protect your health and legal rights to recover compensation for your injuries and losses. Immediately following a severe car crash, you should report the accident to the authorities by calling law enforcement at the crash scene or by filing a crash report with the DMV within ten days of the accident. Obtain a copy of the police accident report if law enforcement responded to the accident scene.
You should also see a doctor as soon as possible to be examined for injuries you may have suffered in the crash. Follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations and recovery instructions. Do not put off procedures or rehabilitation. Request copies of medical records from your treatment.
Remember to notify your car insurance company about the accident as soon as possible to ensure you retain your eligibility for coverage under your policy. Gather your pay stubs or income records if you miss time from work or earn less money while recovering from your accident injuries. Keep all bills, invoices, and receipts of expenses related to the accident, including medical expenses, vehicle repairs, or medical/mobility equipment purchases.
Keep a diary or journal of your recovery from the accident to document physical pain, emotional distress, or limitations on your daily activities you experience due to your injuries and subsequent medical treatment. Your diary or journal can help support your claim for pain and suffering compensation.
Compensation Available After a Bad Car Accident
Suppose you’ve suffered severe injuries or property damage in a car accident caused by another driver’s or party’s negligence. In that case, you might have the right to obtain financial compensation for your accident-related losses. A car accident claim can provide you with financial recovery for:
• Car repairs
• Reimbursement for the value of your car if it was totaled in the crash
• Costs of medical treatment and rehabilitation
• Costs of long-term care or support services you need for disabilities caused by your accident injuries
• Ongoing and future losses of income or earning potential if you cannot work or earn as much as you did before the accident
• Physical pain and anguish
• Emotional distress or suffering
• Loss of enjoyment and quality of life caused by disabilities or visible scarring/disfigurement interfering with your daily activities
• Loss of consortium or compensation for your spouse for the loss of your companionship and intimacy
Do You Need to Replace Car Seats?
Child car and booster seat manufacturers and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommend replacing a car or booster seat after a moderate to severe car accident. Parents should not assume they can continue using a car seat just because it doesn’t have visible damage following a moderate or severe crash. A bad car accident can cause hard-to-spot damage to a car seat that compromises its effectiveness in keeping a child safe in a subsequent accident. However, parents may not need to replace a car seat following a minor accident or an accident in which:
• The driver could drive the vehicle away from the accident,
• The vehicle door nearest the car seat suffered no damage,
• No passenger suffered an injury,
• The airbags did not deploy, and
• The car seat has no visible damage.
How an Attorney Can Guide You Through the Recovery Process After a Bad Car Accident
When you’ve gotten into a bad car accident, you deserve to focus on your recovery. A compassionate, experienced car accident attorney can help by handling all the details of your legal claims, freeing you to devote your time and energy to your treatment and rehab. Your car accident attorney can:
• Investigate the crash and secure evidence for your legal claims
• Identify liable parties and options for obtaining financial recovery, such as applicable insurance coverage
• Document injuries and losses you’ve suffered to gather evidence supporting your compensation demand
• Evaluate your legal options and understand what to expect in the claims process
• File insurance claims or send demand letters to liable parties and insurers
• Vigorously negotiate for total compensation in a settlement
• Go to court and trial, if necessary, to demand maximum financial recovery and justice for the injuries you suffered in a bad car crash
Contact a Bad Accident Attorney for Help
After a severe car accident, you deserve experienced legal representation to help you recover maximum compensation for your injuries and losses. Contact De Castroverde Personal Injury & Accident today for a free, no-obligation consultation to learn how a Las Vegas car accident lawyer can assist you with pursuing financial recovery from an at-fault driver and insurance company.