Kansas City Auto Accident Lawyers
Representing Victims of Vehicle Negligence
A car accident is a frightening and traumatic event for just about anyone. Even if you are fortunate enough to come away from an accident without any injuries, the property damage can still be quite extensive. If you or a loved one has been injured, then recovery can be even more difficult. The pain and suffering you experience due to someone else's negligence should not be your burden to bear alone.
If you or someone you know has been in an auto accident, call us at Norton & Norfleet, P.C., at (816) 454-5800. Tell us about what happened and we can discuss your options and fight to protect your rights.
I Was Hit by Another Driver - Now What?
After an accident, and once you and everyone else have received medical attention, it is very important that you take the right steps to protect yourself.
First of all, provide any necessary information to law enforcement and any insurance companies involved, but do not sign anything given to you by an insurance company, even your own. Contacting an experienced attorney will help. Second, take photos, gather information, and write down any helpful details about the accident.
Depending on the nature of your case, you might begin by filing an insurance claim. Watch how it is handled - you may very well need to file a civil lawsuit in addition! Speaking to a lawyer right away can ensure you do not sign away your rights at any point when dealing with insurance companies.
What Are Negligence and Liability?
Negligence and liability are at the core of any civil case or insurance claim following a car accident. In general, negligence refers to actions or inactions that go against what a reasonable person would do. For example, driving at excessive speed on a wet road would be considered negligent behavior. Liability determines how much of an accident was caused by the negligence of one person or another.
Missouri is a "comparative fault" state. This means that how much each person involved is at fault for the accident actually impacts whatever damages he or she can receive in claim or civil case. Having an experienced lawyer by your side is vital to proving the other driver was negligent, establishing liability, and proving he or she was more at fault than you in the accident.
Should I Settle or Go to Court?
This really depends on the details of your case and what seems like the best move in your situation. In general, insurance companies will always try to pay as little as possible, and any damages not covered by insurance may need to be sought in a civil case.
Settling can skip the potentially long process of a court hearing and ensures a certain amount of payment.
Going to court can take longer and it is always possible that a judge will rule against you, but you can often seek more money in court than the other party will offer as a settlement. You should definitely speak with a knowledgeable attorney before making any settlement decision.
What About a Hit-and-Run, or If the Other Motorist Is Uninsured?
In a situation in which you do not have insurance information for the other driver, or he is uninsured, you have a few options. If your insurance includes uninsured coverage, then you can file a claim with your own company to cover your expenses, up to the limit set by your policy.
If you can find the other driver, then you can file a civil lawsuit to seek damages that are not covered due to his lack of insurance. A hit-and-run is also a criminal offense, which means law enforcement can pursue and help find the other driver.
Other Types of Accidents
Accidents can include a wide range of other vehicles and situations like large trucks, motorcycles, and even bicycles. Most of the same laws apply in these situations, though insurance coverage can vary. When a commercial vehicle is involved, there may be more people or companies liable for damages depending on the specifics of your situation. No matter what, we handle:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Defective auto accidents
- Distracted driving accidents
- Drunk driving accidents
Our Accident Attorneys Can Help You
At the law office of Norton & Norfleet, P.C., we have more than 60 years of experience to put to use for you. Having worked on some of the most complicated medical malpractice cases in the state, we have a deep knowledge of the health issues that accompany auto accident cases. We will analyze the nature of your accident and develop an approach suited to arrive at an ideal resolution in the form of settlement or trial.
Please talk to a Kansas City accident attorney if you have been injured in any type of motor vehicle accident. Call us at (816) 454-5800 to talk about your case right now.