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What Are Typical Car Accident Settlement Amounts?

A young couple is satisfied as they open mail and discover their settlement check.

Average settlements in car accident claims range from numbers in the thousands, tens of thousands, and sometimes millions. This depends on the injuries suffered, the cause of the accident, and who is held liable.

While typical car accident settlements vary, what is clear is that hiring an attorney to represent you greatly improves your chances of securing a settlement. Additionally, that settlement amount increases by an average of 300%.

The attorneys at Falcon Law Firm can be reached online or by phone at (732) 660-1200. Let our experience in handling car accident cases be of great value to you and your family.

What Is an Average Car Accident Settlement?

Car accident collision claims for property only can be in the low thousands, while the claims for bodily injury average above $15,000. Catastrophic injury and wrongful death claims can get into far higher numbers, hundreds of thousands to multi-million dollar cases.

It’s difficult to pinpoint one number or even a range of amounts for how much to expect from a car accident settlement. Averages vary year to year, and can be pulled in skewed directions by one unusually low or high result. 

If you want to know what your car accident settlement could be worth, ask yourself:

  • Bills — How much did your medical bills cost? This number is added up from co-pays, out-of-pocket expenses, and other recovery items like pharmaceuticals, mobility aids, and/or physical therapy.
  • Wages — How much time and money did you miss from work? This can include sick and vacation time eaten up in dealing with the accident, lost wages, missed advancement opportunities, skipped contracts (including for freelancers), and lost employment.
  • Pain — How much pain and suffering did you experience? A car accident can easily cause physical pain ranging from discomfort to agony. Crashes also frequently lead to psychological trauma like stress, panic attacks, or bereavement if you lose something or someone irreplaceable.
  • Punishment — Did the other driver act irresponsibly? If the cause of your accident was due to another person’s negligence or recklessness, they may be ordered to pay more as punishment (aka punitive damages). An example of this is in cases of DUI or distracted driving.

Once you’ve asked yourself these questions, call a Falcon Law Firm car accident attorney at (732) 660-1200 to ask us what we can do for you. In answering your questions, we can begin to build your case, prepare all the necessary documents, and help you secure the fair settlement you deserve.

Your likelihood of securing a settlement with a personal injury attorney is 96%, and the settlement amount averages 300% higher than unrepresented claims.

How Long Does a Car Accident Settlement Take?

Once again, there is no clear average timeframe that can answer this question for you. Speedy pre-trial settlements don’t happen in all claims, and they usually happen when both parties don’t want to drag the process out through a full trial. Importantly, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, claims that are represented by a personal injury lawyer result in settlements 96% of the time.

Basically, when you walk in with an experienced attorney, you are far more likely to walk out with a swift, satisfactory settlement than if you filed your claim independently.

As far as the timeline of car accident settlement or verdict results, the factors involved include:

  • Quick negotiations: Your lawyer will gather evidence of your accident and who caused it, and may be able to use that information to negotiate a fair settlement with an insurance company in a relatively short period of time.
  • Reasonable settlement agreements: If the negotiations stall, your attorney can file a lawsuit. Often the official filing of a suit brings the parties involved back to the table to agree on a settlement before going to trial.
  • Efficient trials: If the settlement offers are insufficient, the lawyers at Falcon Law Firm have no hesitation about taking your case to trial. In many instances, settlements are reached before a verdict is made. If the trial does continue to a verdict, there may be even more compensation available to you, rewarded at the judge’s discretion (like punitive damages ordered from those who were found to be in the wrong).

Rest assured that court officials and judges do not want their time wasted any more than you do. If the other side’s counsel or insurance representatives intentionally try to frustrate negotiations by stalling, they risk being punished by a judge. 

Your attorney from Falcon Law Firm will work to get you a prompt, fair settlement if at all possible. We are also happily prepared to see your case through to the end no matter what. Regardless of whether settlement or trial is involved, we aren’t finished with a case until your needs are met.

Contact Attorneys Experienced in Car Accident Settlements

Car accidents occur every minute of every day on average, to the tune of over 5 million accidents per year. A significant portion of those accidents cause severe injury and death, and every single one of them costs resources that could be better spent: time, money, and energy.

Falcon Law is a personal injury firm that takes your injuries personally, whether they are physical, psychological, or financial. Though we can’t undo the consequences of a car accident, we do work tirelessly to see that our clients recover the maximum amount that is available to them in compensation. 

Reach out to us via our online contact form, or by calling (732) 660-1200 at your earliest convenience. We know you and your family’s health and safety is worth more than the bare minimum. We will work to secure the settlement you deserve as soon as you reach out to us.

What Do I Do After a Car Accident?

A young woman driver has just been in a car accident, and holds a fist against her forehead to calm her stress.

The value of having your own attorney after a car accident is more than just the likelihood of an increased settlement amount. A lawyer also saves you time, worry, and common mistakes that can be made in the confusion after a car wreck.

If you’re severely injured, caring for the injured party, or mourning their death, having a legal professional on hand can be vital. In cases complicated by drunk driving, or as seemingly simple as a rear-end accident, we cover the legal side of things so you can prioritize your own health and the well-being of your family.

The lawyers at Falcon Law Firm handle paperwork on your behalf, advise you of your rights, and carry out your wishes while you focus on your own needs. Reach out to us through our confidential online form to schedule a consultation, or by calling (732) 660-1200 for representation right away.

For more information on what to do immediately after an accident, or how the car accident claims process works, read on.

I Just Got Into an Accident, What Do I Do?

The order of the steps you take after a car accident is important. We like to use the acronym “CRASH” to break it down. By following this guide, you can help reduce your stress and avoid common missteps:

  • Care: Priority number one after a crash is always your physical safety, the safety of those around you, and then the safety of your property and private information. Getting those who need treatment to the hospital or dangerously wrecked vehicles off the road is the first and most important task.
  • Report: Reporting the incident to the police can help protect your rights later. If you are able to, dictate your memories to officers, record them on your own cell phone, and take pictures.
  • Attorney: From here on, every action you take can be aided by an attorney. By hiring your own lawyer, you’re represented when dealing with insurance companies, negotiating payouts, and pursuing a lawsuit if your losses cost more than initially offered.
  • Settle: Reaching a fair settlement often depends on your ability to counter an insurance company’s offer, which may require evidence. Your attorney can gather this information on your behalf, prepare and negotiate a counter settlement, and take your case to trial if necessary. 
  • Heal: While your attorney works for your benefit, your efforts can go to recovering your health and repairing or replacing your vehicle. There are some tasks that are your own private business, but for everything where your attorney can help, we’ll be there.

Auto accidents can be highly destabilizing. You’re parked or driving, going about your own business, when suddenly an impact derails the rest of your day, week, year, and sometimes your life depending on the severity of your injuries. 

An experienced lawyer can help you right away, even in those first few moments when you’re asking, “Someone crashed into me, what do I do?” We can advise you every step of the way, and handle all the paperwork associated with securing the settlement or damages award you deserve.

Whether you’ve been in a car, truck, or motorcycle accident, Falcon Law Firm is here to help.

How Can a Car Accident Lawyer Help?

By helping you secure a settlement or damages award (ordered by a judge), a car accident attorney can help you access:

  • Payment for medical bills and ongoing treatment
  • Reimbursement for lost wages, loss of a job, and employment-related benefits (like health insurance)
  • Compensation for pain and suffering, including stress-related conditions like PTSD
  • Punitive damages, which are funds that may be charged to negligent parties that are then awarded to you
  • Coverage for wrongful death expenses like funeral costs and the loss of a family’s breadwinner. This also takes into account the loss of your loved one’s companionship and guidance. 

The main benefit of hiring a car accident lawyer, after the time and stress we can save you, is the prospect of settlement and verdict results. You are more likely to receive a settlement with professional legal representation. Your settlement may also be up to 300% higher on average. 

How Do I Contact a Car Crash Lawyer?

If you’ve been in a car accident, you don’t have to handle the fallout alone. Falcon Law Firm is a personal injury firm operating primarily in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, with extensive experience in car and automobile accident cases. We’re here to you and yours with a rapid response after an unfortunate accident, and will be with you through the entire process until we achieve the fairest possible settlement.

Falcon Law can be reached through our online contact form, or by calling (732) 660-1200 directly. We work tirelessly to serve our neighbors, their families, and to help stop preventable accidents from happening by holding wrongdoers accountable.

Common Rear-End Accident Injuries

Young man holding back of neck after whiplash injury from a rear-end accident

Common rear-end accident injuries can vary from minor scratches to catastrophic spinal cord injuries. When a drunk driver causes a rear-end crash, the consequences can be tragic.At Falcon Law Firm, LLC, our rear-end accident attorneys believe negligent drivers should be held accountable for their actions. Call today if you or a loved one have been hurt in an accident due to someone’s careless act. You can schedule a free consultation by clicking here or calling (732) 660-1200.

Woman Suffers Fatal Injuries From Being Rear-Ended 

Recently, a truck fatally rear-ended a North Carolina woman on Route 9 in New Jersey. According to the report, the crash involved a Toyota Echo with four people. Among them was twenty-year-old Ciara Gee of Raleigh, North Carolina. When paramedics were called to the scene, Ciara was pronounced dead. 

While the investigation is still pending, it has been determined that forty-year-old Sergio Seixeiro struck the car from behind. As of this article, Sergio has been charged with:

  • Driving while intoxicated
  • Vehicular homicide
  • Three counts of assault by auto. 

State police believe the contributing factors to the rear-end collision involve speed and driving while intoxicated. Seixeiro is being held at the Middle County Adult Correction Center until his pre-trial hearings. 

Examples of Rear-End Accident Injuries in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

At Falcon Law Firm, LLC, we have extensive experience helping rear-end car accident victims. Whiplash is one of the most common rear-end accident injuries. 

Neck, Head, and Shoulder Injuries, Usually Resulting in Whiplash

When a vehicle fails to stop and strikes a car from behind, the body can lurch forward, causing a whipping effect to the spine and neck. Symptoms of whiplash include:

  • Moderate to severe neck pain
  • Stiffness of the neck, sometimes limiting mobility
  • Shoulder pain
  • Low back pain
  • Dizziness, especially when moving from a sitting to a standing position
  • Pain in the arm or hand
  • Numbness in the arm or blurred
  • Blurred vision
  • Concentration and memory problems
  • Irritability
  • Sleeplessness
  • Fatigue

Whiplash can be delayed by several hours to days following a crash, so it is important to seek medical attention after a collision. At the emergency room, whiplash can be diagnosed via the following methods:

  • X-ray 
  • Magnetic resonance imaging, MRIs
  • Computed tomography, or CT scans

Whiplash can be treated in several ways:

  • Ice packs are helpful within the first 24 hours of the incident
  • Neck collars can protect your neck and prevent you from further injuries
  • Physical therapy
  •  Osteopathic manipulation

Back Injury From Rear-End Car Accident 

Sustaining back injuries from a rear-end car accident can be devastating. Spinal injuries can be catastrophic, often causing long-term pain and damage. As the body jerks from impact, the spine can be compressed, and the lower back muscles and ligaments bruised.

Herniated disks can also present problems over time. A spinal disc acts as a shock absorber and holds the ligaments of the spine together. Discs can tear open, leak, put pressure against the spine, and pinch in a rear-end collision. Sufferers tend to experience:

  • Numbness
  • Pain in the extremities
  • Tingle sensations

Arm and Wrist Injuries

Arm and wrist injuries are also common. When drivers brace for a crash’s impact, they instinctively tense their arms, wrists, and hands. However, by stiffening the hands and arms, accident victims contribute to the severity of the injury. Most suffer:

  • Broken wrists
  • Wrist sprain
  • Stress fractures
  • Dislocated shoulder or joint

Broken, fractured, and Dislocated Bones

While an airbag deployed after an accident may save a driver or passenger’s life, it can come at a cost. Rear-end accidents that deploy the airbag can bruise or break the ribcage and sternum. Additionally, a seatbelt jerking across the chest may crack or break ribs. 

Broken bones may present symptoms that include:

  • Deep, intense ache or sharp pain
  • Severe bruising
  • Stiffness
  • Swelling
  • Heat
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling chills

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, can cause many problems. In some cases, injured parties can experience permanent damage. The most common symptoms of a TBI are:

  • Concussion
  • Bruising
  • Bleeding 
  • Torn neurons

Amputations and Loss of Limbs

When high speeds play a part in the crash, occupants can experience catastrophic injuries. Victims may lose hands, feet, or limbs or may need to have them removed. Losing an extremity is profoundly life-altering. Victims must relearn every aspect of their life, including:

  • Day to day activities, like putting on a shirt or shoes
  • Commuting to and from places may need to be adjusted, whether driving, biking, or walking

In addition to the physical adjustments, amputees often suffer pain from nerve damage and phantom limb syndrome. The emotional and psychological toll from losing a limb is significantly taxing. Facing a lifetime of physical therapy, prosthetic limbs, pain management, therapy, and more can be overwhelming.

Amputations and lost limbs are often the sources of a decreased quality of life. Accommodations may be needed for the house and may require adjustments.

Crushing Injuries

Crushing injuries occur when occupants are pressed against the ground or the vehicle has been crumpled during the accident. Often, they involve internal organ damage and bleeding. 

At Falcon Law Firm, LLC, we understand the serious impact catastrophic injuries can have on a person’s life. If you or a loved one have experienced devastating injuries due to driver negligence, call one of our esteemed rear-end car accident lawyers.

How Rear-End Accident Injuries Affect Drivers in New Jersey and Pennsylvania

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released a study that analyzed rear-end collisions across the country. The study found:

  • Rear-end collisions are the most frequent kind of accident
  • More than 29% of all traffic accidents are rear-ending injuries
  • Nearly 87% of rear-end collisions involve a distracted driver
  • 64% of drivers took their eyes off the road

The study concluded that infrastructure improvement might not be enough. Adding safety measures to cars themselves may be necessary, like a rear-signaling system that stops after the vehicle comes to a complete stop.

At Falcon Law Firm, LLC, we will fight for the compensation you deserve for your injuries

How Falcon Law Firm, LLC, Can Help Secure the Compensation You Deserve

If you or a loved one have suffered injuries in a rear-end collision, Falcon Law Firm, LLC is here for you. For over two decades, our superior legal team has recovered hundreds of millions in verdicts and settlements for our clients. 

In addition:

  • We provide close, personal, and responsive service
  • We are fluent in Spanish 
  • We are a highly accomplished litigation firm, earning recognition with:
  • TheMillion Dollars Advocates
  • Best Attorneys in America
  • National Trial Lawyers Association Top 100 Trial Lawyer

What Damages Are You Entitled to After Suffering Injuries from Being Rear-Ended?

Typically, accident victims will recover the costs of repairing your vehicle. If the cost of repairs exceeds the value of your motor vehicle, it is important to speak with your rear-end accident lawyer. An experienced attorney can review your claim to ensure you receive the full compensation you deserve.

Recoverable damages may include:

  • Complete coverage of your medical expenses related to the accident
  • Lost wages if you are unable to work
  • Loss of future income
  • Pain and suffering damages
  • Loss of consortium
  • Emotional distress damages
  • Possible punitive damages for gross negligence 

If you or a loved one have experienced a whiplash injury due to a negligent motorist, consult with one of our personal injury lawyers to discuss the compensation you deserve.

Call Falcon Law Firm, LLC Today for Your Rear-End Accident Attorney

Injuries from being rear-ended are often significant. Whiplash injuries can be especially painful, sometimes lasting for months at a time. Soft tissue injuries, including strains and sprains to the muscles and tendons, can be difficult to prove. At Falcon Law firm, LLC, our experienced rear-end accident attorneys have the skills, resources, and medical experts to overcome complex medical cases. 

Damage to a vehicle is tangible. Unfortunately, the suffering, pain, and trauma rear-end accident victims experience are not. At Falcon Law Firm, LLC, we know the key to securing the maximum compensation for our clients is to present intangible feelings in a way that an otherwise healthy person can understand.If you or a loved one have been hurt in a rear-end collision, you need Falcon Law Firm, LLC. Receive a free evaluation of your case today by clicking here or calling (732) 838-5435. We have served clients with honesty, integrity, and determination for more than two decades.

How Should I Drive During Wintertime?

A car on the road during winter in low visibility

Car accidents can be stressful and costly. One way to mitigate the chances of a collision is to drive appropriately for the season. During winter, motorists need to take several precautions to ensure they reduce their risks.

In many parts of the United States, winter driving can quickly turn treacherous. A snow squall can become a blinding barrier. A bit of rain can freeze up and turn into black ice on the highway. This does not mean that drivers have no way of protecting themselves, their passengers, or other people on the roads. Taking a few precautions can reduce one’s chances of a collision.

Check the Tires Frequently

Some consumers prefer to exchange their regular tires for winter or all-weather tires. Other motorists keep the same tires year round. Regardless, all four tires should be evaluated at least monthly during the winter. Variations in temperature can cause tires both to inflate and lose pounds of air pressure. An underinflated tire can cause trouble.

Drivers should therefore control their tire pressure and check it frequently. They should also check tire tread depths or have a trusted auto mechanic do it for them. When necessary, tires should be replaced with new ones built for performance when conditions are imperfect.

Replace the Windshield Wipers

Windshield wipers are vital during any kind of precipitation event. From freezing rain to sticking snow, wipers allow drivers to see whatever is ahead with as much visibility as the weather will allow. Replacing wipers can be easy and fast. Most drivers can learn to do it themselves, or one can have a technician do it.

Maintain Gas

Most car manufacturers and automobile experts recommend keeping at least a quarter of a tank of gas in the car when the temperature plummets. Otherwise, the gas line might start to freeze.

Clean the Lights and Mirrors

Snow, dirt, and sludge can build up on lights and side mirrors. It can be very challenging to see the road ahead or to catch a glimpse of another vehicle with clouded headlights.

Drive Defensively

During winter, defensive driving should be practived. For instance, a motorist may want to increase their following distance by an extra couple of car lengths, slow down to below the speed limit in certain situations, and resist using cruise control. A driver should also limit distractions, including listening to the radio and cellphone use.

Store Emergency Items in the Car

A final way to stay safer when driving during wintertime is to keep an emergency kit in the car. The kit should include flares, something to repair a flat tire, blankets, water, and energy bars. These items are important, especially if a car accident leaves a driver waiting for help.

Doylestown Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Help Winter Car Accident Victims Recover Damages

If you were involved in a winter car accident, do not wait until the statute of limitations runs out on your ability to file a claim. A Doylestown car accident lawyer at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC can help you. Call us at732-660-1200 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Who is Responsible for Property Damage After a Car Accident?

Crash involving two vehicles

When a car accident happens, the first concern is if everyone is safe. Even if no one was hurt, a car owner may discover significant property damage. It may not be immediately apparent how they should handle making a claim for the damage. Property damage in legal terms constitutes harm to physical property. Separate from personal injury, which addresses bodily harm suffered by people, property damage involves the vehicle or items that were inside the car.

Property damage usually consists of paying for repairs for the damaged items or their replacement value. In some cases, the claim may include compensation for loss of use or sentimental value. Loss of use pertains to the costs associated with the claimant not having the ability to make use of the item and the costs associated with having to pay for a substitute, such as a rental car. A claim may assert that the damaged property held sentimental value that should be considered in the payment of damages.

The at-fault driver is responsible for any resulting property damage. This is complicated by the involvement of auto insurance since insurance companies represent the drivers. If the insurance denies the claim or insufficiently covers the damage, the driver may be sued personally to make up the difference.

Are There Deadlines for Filing for Property Damage?

The major concern when it comes to filing a property damage claim has to do with deadlines. Most insurance companies have time restraints for claims that begin from the date of the accident. It is imperative to file any claim before this term expires.

If a lawsuit is sought, there are strict deadlines as well. These time limits vary by state. Pennsylvania has a deadline of two years from the accident date. New Jersey allows personal injury lawsuits to be filed up to six years afterward.

What Steps Should be Taken to Support a Property Damage Claim?

At the accident scene, the police should be called. Information should be collected about the at-fault driver, the make, model, and license number of the car involved, and all relevant insurance information. Notes should be made on the damage caused by the accident as well as any contributing factors, such as weather and road conditions. Photographs and witness statements can help.

Whether the claimant is another driver with car damage or the owner of damaged property, such as a building or tree, it is best to report the incident to insurance companies on both sides. The policy of the at-fault party should provide coverage, but the claimant’s insurance may require that the accident be reported, regardless of fault.

When a claimant involves their own insurance, the claim may process more quickly, and the insurance companies can fight about who pays. However, this may include paying a deductible that may or may not be refunded after the insurance companies settle.

Monmouth County Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Advise Clients About Property Damage Claims

If you incurred property damage in a car accident, you are entitled to collect appropriate compensation. Our Monmouth County car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC provide legal guidance to car crash victims. Contact us online or call us at 732-660-1200 for a free consultation. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Why is Aggressive Driving so Dangerous?

Black car speeding on a road

Aggressive driving is defined by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as a combination of moving traffic offenses committed by a driver that endangers other people or property. Aggressive driving includes:

  • Speeding
  • Tailgating
  • Running red lights
  • Failure to use turn signals and yield
  • Rapid lane changes

Often motivated by anger, aggressive driving is highly dangerous and can result in serious car accidents.

What are Common Causes of Aggressive Driving?

Nowadays, there is significant traffic congestion and longer commute times. The NHTSA cites traffic congestion as one major cause of aggressive driving. Drivers feel compelled to speed, change lanes more often to gain an advantage, and drive aggressively in order to arrive at their destinations on time. Anger and resentment are directed at other drivers.

Other causes of aggressing driving include personality traits and outside factors. Competitive personalities and antisocial personalities are prone to aggressive driving. The relative anonymity of being in a vehicle may also contribute to drivers acting more aggressively than they would in a situation where they could be easily identified. Outside factors that can trigger aggressive driving include noise, heat, traffic, street design, and mobile phones.

How can I Protect Myself from an Aggressive Driver?

Extreme cases of aggressive driving may even escalate to road rage, which is where a driver commits a violent criminal act with the intent to cause physical harm. There are very easy ways to avoid becoming the victim of an aggressive driving accident. The first step is to avoid behaviors that aggravate other drivers, such as the following:

  • Driving Slowly in the Left Lane: Be courteous and reserve the left lane for passing only.
  • Gesturing: Obscene gestures or even shaking one’s head can all provoke anger in another driver.
  • Cutting off Another Driver: Leave plenty of room when merging or changing lanes.
  • Tailgating: Following another car too closely can be seen as a provocation. Leave enough space between one’s car and the car in front so that there is room to react in an emergency.

Sometimes, an aggressive driver appears on the road without provocation. In this case, do not engage with them or react to their behavior. Instead, give them plenty of room, avoid making eye contact, and if it is possible, safely pull over to a location where there are other people around and call the police for help.

If one is injured in an aggressive driving accident, it is advantageous to speak to a lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer will help with a personal injury claim or other possible suits.

Doylestown Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Defend Injured Victims of Aggressive Driving Accidents

If you have a severe car accident injury because of an aggressive driver, one of our Doylestown car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC can help you. Our experienced legal team provides personalized representation to every one of our clients. Call us at 732-660-1200 or complete our online form for a free consultation today. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

What is the Serious Injury Threshold in New Jersey?

Doctor analzying a brain scan

In a no-fault state, like New Jersey, a person who gets hurt in a car accident is required to file claim with their own insurance company for benefits. Often, the totality of these losses can be addressed within the limits of one’s own policy. However when injuries are serious, they may exceed the maximum allowance in the claimant’s insurance policy. When this happens, the law allows the injured party to file a lawsuit to recoup the extraneous financial damages suffered in the accident by filing a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.

What is a No-Fault State?

A no-fault state requires that an injured driver must seek payment from their own auto insurance to cover an injury, no matter who is at fault in the accident. A claimant can receive insurance payments to cover out-of-pocket medical expenses and lost income without having to endure a long process to prove fault. The downside of the no-fault law is that a claimant is unable to seek non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering, unless their injuries are extraordinarily serious.

The serious injury threshold is intended to provide an avenue for a seriously injured person to be able to collect compensation when the no-fault insurance coverage falls short of their needs.

When is an Injury Severe?

In New Jersey, a lawsuit against an at-fault driver is permitted in cases that involve one of the following serious injuries:

  • Death
  • Dismemberment
  • Loss of Fetus
  • Disfigurement or scarring
  • Displaced fractures
  • Permanent injury

The extent and specifics of an injury may determine if it meets the criteria for a significant or permanent injury. Consulting a lawyer about a severe personal injury is advised.

What Should I Do if I Do Not Have a Severe Injury?

If the injury does not meet the serious injury threshold, the claimant cannot sue for pain and suffering. Rather, their damages will be limited to economic losses, such as doctor bills or lost pay that resulted from the accident. The maximum benefit amount that can be collected may be limited by the state in which the insured lives in or by the conditions within the policy itself.

If a victim thinks their injury extends beyond the serious injury threshold, a lawyer can provide guidance and legal support to assist them in obtaining fair compensation for the damages. For this reason, it is important that a victim contacts a lawyer right away after a serious car accident.

Oakhurst Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Help Clients Obtain Fair Compensation for Serious Injuries

If you have a serious injury because of a collision, contact one of our dedicated Oakhurst car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC. Our legal team will help you understand your rights and your future medical and financial needs as you deal with your serious injury. Contact us online or call us at 732-660-1200 for a free consultation today. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Thanksgiving Safety Tips for Drivers

Thanksgiving celebration banner

Thanksgiving celebrations may be different for families this year, but many still plan to travel. With so much uncertainty these days, understanding the dangers of driving during the holiday week is more important than ever.

Although the American Automobile Association (AAA) provides travel forecasts for all the holidays, it is difficult to estimate how many people will be on the roads this year due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. It is possible that more people will be driving instead of flying, but it also depends on what parts of the country the travelers reside in.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported 432 traffic fatalities during Thanksgiving weekend in 2018. The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that there could be more than 50,300 non-fatal car accidents. Besides having more drivers on the roads, other reasons for the upsurge in accidents and fatalities include drunk driving, drowsy driving, and poor weather conditions. These sobering facts are a good reason to think about ways to drive more safely during Thanksgiving week.

How can I Prepare for a Long Drive?

There are many steps that a traveler can take before a long drive to help avoid an accident:

  • Maintain Vehicle: Getting the vehicle ready in advance is a good start. Checking tire pressure and filling up the tank is recommended.
  • Share Travel Plans: Sharing the travel plans with family or friends is important in case there is an emergency.
  • Have an Emergency Kit: Putting an emergency kit in the trunk is also wise, especially for a long trip.
  • Plan Route: A driver should map out their route to see if there any delays or hazardous conditions.
  • Check Weather: Before driving, check the weather report and plan accordingly.
  • Rest: Get a sufficient amount of sleep the night before to prevent drowsy driving.
  • Avoid Rushing: Allowing extra time for driving is beneficial. Heavy traffic is a distinct possibility.

How to Drive Safe During Thanksgiving Week

Thanksgiving week is associated with overeating and overdrinking, and the NSC urgers drivers to not drink and drive. They also pointed out the hazards of driving under the influence of drugs, especially since cannabis has been decriminalized in some states. Appointing a designated driver or contacting a rideshare service are easy ways to avoid drunk driving.

Staying focused on the road at all times is also important, so a cellphone should be put on Do Not Disturb mode. Eating, drinking, playing with a pet in the car, and arguing with passengers are forms of distracted driving. Always keep one’s attention on the road.

It is also important to drive defensively. If another driver is tailgating, speeding, changing lanes abruptly, or exhibiting other unsafe behaviors, it is best to stay as far away as possible. When it is safe to do so, a passenger can contact law enforcement to report the unsafe driver. Staying calm is the safer move. If a car accident does occur, a victim should seek advice from a lawyer as soon as possible.

Oakhurst Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Advocate for Safe Driving During Thanksgiving Week

During the holiday week, drivers should be extra cautious. If a car accident does happen, we can help. Our Oakhurst car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC protect car accident victims against negligent drivers. For a free consultation, contact us online or call us at 732-660-1200. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

 

What Should I Do if My Child Was in a Car Accident?

Two white cars after a car crash

When a child is involved in a car accident, the parents will be worried about their child’s health and well-being. Many accidents only result in property damage, but in other cases, car crashes cause serious injuries. It can be difficult to focus and make important decisions during this sensitive time. 

Whether or not a parent can sue on behalf of their child will depend on a number of factors. If the child was struck by a vehicle, then it is possible for a parent to make a claim on the child’s behalf. In general, children under the age of 18 years old are unable to bring their own claim against a third party. In this case, a parent can step in to file a lawsuit on their child’s behalf as a litigation guardian.

If the parent was driving when the child was injured, then serving in the capacity of a litigation guardian may not be possible. There are some exceptions to this restriction. It is best to consult with a lawyer to get legal advice on whether it is possible to file a claim as a litigation guardian.

Can a Minor File a Personal Injury Claim?

In some instances, it is possible to wait until the child reaches the age of majority so that they can file a claim on their own behalf. However, waiting until the age of majority is not always possible because there is a time limit for filing claims. A claim filed after the statute of limitations has passed will be denied by a court. In many instances, the statute of limitation is two years after the accident. It is best to check with a qualified lawyer as state laws can vary.

Should I Accept a Settlement Offer?

An insurance company may seek to settle a claim out of court. Insurance limits vary by state and can impact the maximum amount that can be recovered in an insurance settlement. Most states, including New Jersey and Pennsylvania, have some version of no-fault insurance. Less expensive plans may limit recovery to economic damages, such as repair to the vehicle, lost wages, and medical bills. Some higher cost plans expand coverage to non-economic damages, like pain and suffering. Before accepting a settlement, it is best to consult with a lawyer who can review the case.

Monmouth County Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Represent Children Injured in Car Accidents

If your child has injuries because of a car accident, it is advantageous to speak with a lawyer. Our Monmouth County car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC assist accident victims with compensation. For a free consultation, complete our online form or call us at 732-660-1200. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Accident Prevention Technologies are Reducing Car Accidents

Driving backing up using a back up camera

Safety advocates, car manufacturers, and enterprising entrepreneurs continue to invent products aimed at reducing the severity and frequency of car accidents. Newer inventions have saved numerous lives. In addition to better seat belts and airbags, the following technologies have reduced the number of car accidents:

Rear-Facing Cameras

Backing out of a parking space or driveway can lead to an unexpected collision with a vehicle, cyclist, or pedestrian. When used in conjunction with the rearview mirror and side mirrors, rear cameras make reversing easier for drivers. Many cars are being built with rear-facing cameras. A car owner without a rear-facing camera can purchase a wireless model to install at home.

Lane Departure Warning Systems

Veering outside of a lane is a common phenomenon that can end in a sideswipe car accident. Special sensors attached to some cars can alert motorists when they are getting too close to center or side lanes. The alerts are especially appealing to people driving uninterrupted for long periods of time.

Blind Spot Warning Systems

Every vehicle has specific blind spots. These are zones where drivers cannot adequately see anything present. In cars, blind spots are along the right and left rear sides. A warning system that indicates a vehicle or object in the blind spot can prevent a crash by serving as an extra pair of eyes for the individual behind the wheel.

Braking Systems

Anti-lock brakes are standard on some car models. An autonomous braking system does not require any human intervention to respond to an impending collision. Instead, the vehicle senses that a crash may occur and stops accordingly. These newer types of braking systems have become increasingly appealing among car buyers.

Forward Collision Warning Systems

A forward collision warning system alerts a driver when they get too close to the vehicle in front of them. Unlike an autonomous braking system, a forward collision warning system does not take over control of the car. It merely serves as an audible signal for the motorist to slow down.

Hands-Free Devices

In New Jersey, a driver is not allowed to talk on their cellphone unless the device is in hand-free mode. In Pennsylvania, a proposed law would echo this New Jersey regulation. All motorists should avail themselves of hands-free options whenever it is possible. These technologies help drivers keep their eyes on the roads. Being distracted for just a few seconds can lead to an accident.

Adaptive Lights

Some vehicles are equipped with adaptive lights. These lights sense the correct amount of brightness needed for safe travel. They also turn off and on without driver intervention. Not only is this convenient, but it can save batteries from being drained due to turned-on lights.

Applications

Many researchers are exploring the use of applications to help promote safe driving. A handful of insurance companies are even experimenting with application use to determine how safely a driver operates.

What Should I Do After a Collision?

New technologies are decreasing fatal accidents; however, collisions still happen. If a driver does get into a car accident, they should receive adequate compensation to cover personal injury treatment costs. A knowledgeable lawyer can help with a claim after an accident.

Monmouth County Car Accident Lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC Support Injured Car Accident Victims

If you have serious injuries because of a car accident, you deserve to know your rights. Our Monmouth County car accident lawyers at the Falcon Law Firm, LLC help victims with their claims. We can help you get compensation. Call us at 732-660-1200 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Oakhurst, Parlin, and Aberdeen, New Jersey, and Doylestown, Pennsylvania, we serve clients throughout Asbury Park, Belmar, Deal, Ocean Township, Point Pleasant, Long Branch, West Long Branch, Sayreville, Middlesex County, and Monmouth County, New Jersey, as well as Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

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