Traffic congestion, speed, icy roads, and inattentive drivers make for dangerous road conditions in Richland, WA. In 2014, there were 877 accidents in the city, causing hundreds of injuries and two fatalities, reports the Washington State Department of Transportation. Rarely a day goes by that you do not see some kind of collision in the news. Sadly, many people suffer serious injuries in accidents that are completely preventable. Recently in Richland news:
- A Richland man was traveling in the wrong direction on Highway 395 in December because he “was tired.” He allegedly caused nearly 10 separate collisions because of his actions. Charges are pending. [Source: com]
- Troopers responded to over 150 crashes in a single weekend in the Tri-Cities area. Speed and melted ice were major contributing factors. [Source: KVEW-TV.com]
- A Richland pastor suffered serious injuries when his car ran into a semi stopped at a light on US-12 last December. According to the news report, there have been more than 1,000 crashes in the last 25 years along that stretch of highway between Walla Walla and the Tri-Cities. [Source: KVEW-TV.com]
These are just some of the many examples of the terrible accidents that can occur when people are distracted, fatigued, or speeding.
What important car accident laws should Richland drivers be aware of?
There are two primary car accident laws drivers should be aware of in case they are ever involved in an accident in Richland. The first is Washington’s fault law. Washington has a fault-based car accident system, which means that drivers are responsible for any victims’ damages from accidents that they cause.
When you have been hurt by another driver’s negligence, you have the right to file a liability claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company and pursue compensation for your losses and expenses. (In contrast, in no-fault states, drivers file a claim with their own insurer, irrespective of fault.) Of course, you will need to prove that the other driver was negligent in some way in order to win your claim.
Another important law you should know is Washington’s pure comparative negligence rule. This law provides that car accident victims can still recover damages even when they are partly at fault for the accident. However, it is important to note that you can only recover compensation up to the percentage of the other driver’s fault. For instance, if the insurer or courts assign you with, say 25 percent fault for the accident, then you can only recover 75 percent of your damages.
What types of damages can I collect with a Richland car accident claim?
A serious car accident can result in tens of thousands or even millions of dollars in losses. Fortunately, you can pursue compensation for both your monetary and non-monetary losses following an accident, including:
- Current and future medical and rehabilitation expenses
- Travel expenses for medical appointments
- Household services
- Loss of wages, reduced capacity to work, loss of work benefits
- Disfigurement and scarring
- The effect of your injuries on your family, career, and future
- Emotional harms, e.g., pain and suffering, post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorders, etc.
- Loss of quality of life
Calculating damages can be challenging. The Pickett Law Firm works hard to ensure that we understand our clients’ injuries, their future needs, and how the accident has affected them. We will carefully assess your damages, speak with economic experts, and evaluate the total value of your claim so that you receive full and fair compensation.
Do I need to hire an attorney for my Richland, WA car accident?
Many car accident claimants simply are not aware of how truly beneficial having a lawyer assist with their case can be. Insurers often dispute or deny claims and it is important to have a legal advocate on your side to uphold your rights and ensure you get the full settlement you deserve.
When you work with The Pickett Law Firm, we can assist with all aspects of your case, such as:
- Explaining your rights and responsibilities
- Collecting evidence
- Finding a rental car
- Talking to witnesses
- Filing paperwork
- Proving liability
- Disputing counterclaims
- Calculating the value of your claim
- Negotiating with insurers for fuller recovery
- Taking the case to court, if need be
It is also important to note that we have a contingency fee policy. This means that we do not charge for our legal services unless you win your case. In other words, you can get the counsel and professional help you need without concern of upfront payment.
Call for FREE Consultation with a Lawyer about a Richland Car Accident
The Pickett Law Firm has been helping car accident victims seek justice for nearly 20 years. Let our team assist with your claim so that you can focus on getting better. Call us today at 509-972-1825 to get started.