Clarksville Car Accident Attorney
Skilled Auto Accident Lawyer Serving all of Montgomery County
When you have been injured in a car accident in Clarksville, TN, the future can look alarmingly uncertain. You may not be able to work. Medical bills may be piling up while the loss of income drains your savings. You need some sense of how you can get out of this difficult situation. You need a skilled Clarksville car accident lawyer on your side.
At Pete Olson Injury Attorneys, we represent clients who have been injured in car accidents caused by:
- Drunk driving
- Negligent drivers
- Defective auto parts
- Texting and driving
- Poor infrastructure or road conditions
We consider it important that our clients understand how we are going to help them, what steps to expect, and how the process works. Our clients appreciate knowing the game plan in advance. Every step of the way, you will be kept updated on the status of your case because we refuse to leave our clients in the dark.
Dealing With the Insurance Company After a Car Crash
Too often, people end up in discussions with insurance companies after an accident. The adjusters will try to convince people to take settlements that are worth a fraction of the actual value of the case.
You should never discuss your case with insurance companies. Leave that to a lawyer who has experience in case valuation. Our team can accurately assess the level of compensation you need to cover your medical bills and other current losses while also ensuring your future needs are met.
Multimillion-Dollar Settlements & Verdicts
At Pete Olson Injury Attorneys, our firm is committed to helping people secure the compensation they need to put their lives back together. Clarksville car accident lawyer Pete Olson has more than 25 years of experience and has built a record of success by obtaining favorable results in thousands of cases and multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts.
You do not have to face the challenges of life after an automobile accident without support. Instead, turn to Pete Olson Injury Attorneys. We collect attorney's fees only if we secure compensation for you.
What damages can I recover after a car accident?
Car accident victims in Tennessee can recover compensation for multiple types of economic and non-economic damages, including:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages and other income
- Property damage
- Future medical care
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
In rare cases, the jury may also award punitive damages which are special damages intended to punish defendants for particularly egregious behavior. These types of damages are awarded in a small percentage of cases, so it is important you speak to an attorney if you have questions about the types of damages you seek.
Do I really need a car accident lawyer?
There is no law that requires you to hire an attorney after a car accident, however it is usually in your best interests to do so. While small car accident claims that involve little more than cosmetic vehicle damage or minor scrapes and bruises can typically be handled on your own without legal assistance, car accident claims involving serious injuries or multiple parties can be highly complex and should be handled by an experienced attorney to protect you against costly pitfalls.
Insurance companies are unlikely to deal with you fairly, so it is important you have strong legal representation. Many studies have shown that car accident victims who retain legal representation have a higher chance of recovering a larger settlement than those who go unassisted. Your attorney can help you file your claim, negotiate with the involved insurance companies on your behalf, gather and analyze evidence, and help you build a powerful case in pursuit of full compensation.
What information should I gather after an auto accident?
If you have been injured in an accident, it is imperative that you gather the following information at the time of your collision or as soon as possible:
- Full name and contact information of everyone involved in the accident
- The location where the accident happened
- A description of the involved party's car (make, model, color, etc.)
- The other party's insurance company and policy number
- The other party's driver's license and plate number
After gathering this information it is important that you file a police report and reach out to an experienced Montgomery County car wreck lawyer as soon as possible. Do not wait to pursue compensation for your accident.
What if I'm partially at fault for a car crash?
In some cases, multiple parties may share blame for a crash. When this happens, Tennessee applies a legal principle known as "modified comparative negligence" which allows injured parties to recover compensation for their losses at a reduced rate based on their proportion of fault. In other words, as long as you are found to be less than 50% at fault for the crash, you may still be eligible to receive some compensation.
For example, say you were speeding when a driver in the adjacent lane encroached into your lane and sideswiped your vehicle. As a result of the crash, you suffered $10,000 worth of damages. At trial, the jury decides that the other driver is 90% at fault for the crash, but because you were speeding, you are 10% to blame. In this scenario, you would be eligible to receive a maximum of $9,000 in compensation (or $10,000 less 10%).
How long will my car accident case take?
Unfortunately, there's no way to accurately predict how long your auto accident case will take to resolve. The timeline of your case will vary depending on a variety of factors, including:
- The type and severity of your injuries
- The willingness of the at-fault party's insurance company to settle
- The amount of damages you are seeking
- Whether or not your case goes to trial
Car accident cases that involve minor injuries and clear-cut liability can sometimes reach a settlement in as little as a few months, while others that are highly contested can potentially take years of litigation before being resolved. Our attorneys will review your situation and help you get a better idea of what type of timeline to expect.
What if the other driver doesn't have insurance?
Your options become more limited in the event that the driver that hit you does not have insurance, or if they do not have enough coverage to pay for the full cost of your damages. In this case, you may be able to seek compensation under your own uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage. While normal liability coverage pays other people for collisions you may cause, UM/UIM coverage pays you for damages resulting from a collision caused by an uninsured or underinsured driver. This also applies if you are a victim of a hit-and-run collision.
Tennessee law requires insurance companies to offer UM/UIM coverage, though drivers have the option of waiving this in writing. Doing so is dangerous, however, as it can potentially leave you in a very difficult financial situation in the event of a wreck.
If you do not have UM/UIM coverage, you may be able to pursue a civil lawsuit directly against the at-fault driver. This is risky, however, as many uninsured drivers have little in terms of personal assets. Still, it is encouraged you at least speak to an attorney about your situation to explore all your legal options.
How long do I have to file a car accident claim in Tennessee?
Under TN Code § 28-3-104, you typically have one year from the date of your collision to file a car accident injury claim against the at-fault driver. Also known as a "statute of limitations," this same one-year deadline applies to wrongful death claims related to car accidents. While it is typically inflexible, the statute of limitations may sometimes be extended in situations where a person's injures are not immediately discovered or if the injured party is a minor.
If you do not file a claim within the filing window, the court will consider your claim invalid and you will be barred from recovering compensation. For this reason, it is crucial you discuss your case with a skilled attorney to understand exactly how the statute of limitations applies to your case.
Will I have to go to court?
In most cases, no. The vast majority of car accident cases are resolved through negotiations between the plaintiff's attorney and the at-fault driver's insurance company, resulting in an out-of-court settlement that is mutually agreed upon by all parties. Your case will only go to trial in the event that a settlement cannot be reached, such as if there is a significant discrepancy between what your attorney believes you deserve and what the insurance company is offering. Your case may also go to trial if there is a dispute over who is at fault for the collision.
While a trial may sometimes be necessary to pursue a greater financial award, there are other situations where accepting a settlement may be in your best interests. Your attorney will inform you of your situation and guide you towards the most reasonable course of action.
The insurance company is already offering a settlement. Should I accept it?
It is highly advised you do not accept any settlement offered by the insurance company without first speaking to an attorney. Insurance companies will often make an initial settlement offer that is far lower than the full value of your damages in an attempt to quickly and cheaply resolve your case while you are most vulnerable.
If you accept the settlement offer, your case is closed and you will be unable to pursue any additional compensation. Our attorneys can protect your interests and negotiate a settlement that compensates you for the true lifetime value of your injuries.
Articles About Car Accidents in Tennessee:
Still have more questions about your car accident? Don't hesitate to give us a call! We also offer the latest information on recent car accidents, lawsuits, and safety tips in our Car Accident Blog:
- Should you Negotiate a Car Crash by Yourself?
- 6 Mistakes to Avoid After a Car Accident
- Determining Fault in Tennessee Car Accidents
- How to Drive Safe in Winter Weather
- Why Automobile High Insurance Limits are Vital
Questions? Our Clarksville auto accident attorney is at your service. Schedule your initial case review today when you call 877-GET-PETE.