A reasonable car accident settlement covers the expenses and losses you incurred due to the negligence of the at-fault driver. It can be hard to fully assess your damages on your own. With the help and guidance of a personal injury lawyer, you can ensure no late-coming or hidden costs are omitted from your list of recoverable damages before starting the negotiation process.
Your lawyer can also handle the negotiation process for you. This service can include talking to and negotiating with the insurance company as well as submitting claim forms and evidence on your behalf. He can also help you weigh each monetary offer you receive and ensure you understand what a reasonable settlement for a car accident in Pittsburgh, PA, is.
What Accident-Related Expenses Can I Include in My Settlement Demand?
A car accident can generate a plethora of expenses for which you can be compensated. They typically start right at the accident scene with vehicle damage and any emergency care for your injuries. You can also request compensation for:
- Past and future lost wages
- Ongoing pain and suffering
- Property damage or total loss
- Mental and emotional distress
- Physical disability or disfigurement
You could continue receiving bills—especially medical bills—for weeks or months after the accident. One hospital stay could result in each health care professional, department, and facility billing you separately. You may also require future medical treatment and therapy. These circumstances can make it difficult to account for everything when assessing your case’s value. A lawyer can help you with this process, saving you time and hardship while allowing you to focus on your health.
Wrongful Death Damages
If a member of your family did not survive a car accident or the injuries that resulted from the accident, you could request a different category of damages. These will include:
- The costs of their funeral and burial
- Loss of the contributions to your family
- Loss of companionship and consortium
Not every family member can file a wrongful death case to recoup these costs. You might be eligible if you are the decedent’s spouse, parent, or child. Under certain circumstances, other relatives may also be eligible. A personal injury lawyer will clarify who can file this type of case and what damages you can reasonably expect to recover.
For a free legal consultation, call 412-661-1400
The Police Report Can Help Build Your Case For Recovery
The at-fault driver’s insurance company will not take your word for the accident’s cause. Instead, they will request proof of its cause, typically starting with the car accident report. It tells all involved parties:
- Whether intoxicants were involved
- What any available witnesses saw
- What actions contributed to the accident
- Whether traffic violations were committed
- What the on-scene police officer observed
The police report will describe the accident, note points of impact, and where each vehicle was positioned when found. A police report will also contain the other driver’s insurance information if you were unable to get it at the scene. You can obtain a copy of the police report, or your lawyer can obtain one for you.
Additional Evidence That Strengthens Your Case
Your police report is a foundation piece of evidence but not the only one that supports your case. You or your lawyer can also build your evidence file with:
- Medical records
- Medical bills
- Witness statements
- Accident scene photos
- Property damage photos
- Injury photos
- Available videos
Some evidence might be harder to obtain on your own. A lawyer can help you get an accident reconstruction report with testimony and opinions from expert witnesses. These, along with other collected evidence, will help prove the negligent driver’s fault and liability. Doing so requires proving they owed you a duty of care, failed to meet it, and caused your physical and financial injuries.
You Have a Limited Amount of Time to Seek Compensation
The state laws determine how much time you have to file a lawsuit after a car accident in Pittsburgh, PA. According to the statute of limitations found in Pa. C.S.A. § 5524, you generally have two years from:
- The date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit if you or a loved one sustained injuries or property damage
The statute of limitations can be complex and altered according to various factors. The best way to understand it and how it applies to your case is to review your circumstances with a personal injury attorney in your state.
Get Help Assessing Your Car Accident Damages
If you or someone you love was injured in a collision, our personal injury lawyer can help you recover. We will help you build a strong case and fight for a reasonable settlement after a car accident in Pittsburgh, PA. Find out how hard we work for your financial recovery by calling a Berger and Green team member at (412) 661-1400 today.