Indiana Car Accidents Frequently Asked Questions
How Long After a Northwest Indiana Car Accident Do I Have to Settle My Case?
You have two years to settle your car accident case in Indiana. If you are not able to settle your case within two years you will have to file suit to preserve your claim. In legal terms, Indiana has a two-year statute of limitations for car accident claims against another driver.
My Car Was Damaged in A Northwest Indiana Car Accident, how Do I Get It Fixed?
The answer to this question depends on whether you were at fault for the accident or not. If you were at fault for the accident your insurance will pay for the repair of your motor vehicle if you purchased the collision benefit in your automobile insurance policy. Most collision policies have a deductible that ranges between $100 and $1000, which will be your responsibility. If you do not have collision insurance you will be responsible for the cost of repairs.
If the other driver was at fault for the accident and he/she is insured, that driver's insurance company will pay to have your car fixed.
I Was Injured in A Northwest Indiana Car Accident, How Do I Get My Medical Bills Paid?
Initially, your medical bills are your responsibility; however, medical expenses are an element of damages that you will be able to be compensated at the time of settlement or trial. There are a few avenues that you will provide insurance for payment of medical expenses related to your car accident. First, check your automobile insurance policy and see if you purchased “medical payments” coverage. Medical payments coverage will pay for usual, reasonable and customary medical expenses related to the automobile accident up to the amount of the coverage.
Medical payments coverage ranges from $1,000 to $25,000.
If you do not have medical payments coverage, your health insurance will pay for your medical expenses. If you do not have medical payments coverage but you do have Medicare or Medicaid, these programs will pay for your medical expenses related to the accident.
Whether it is your car insurance company, health insurance company, Medicare or Medicaid that pays your medical expenses initially, if you receive compensation for your medical expenses from the other driver's insurance company, they will require some form of repayment. This is called subrogation and it can be a very complicated area of personal injury law and most of the time requires an attorney's assistance.
I Was Partially at Fault for My Michigan City Indiana Car Accident; Will the Other Driver's Insurance Company Pay for My Car to Be Fixed?
Maybe. Indiana is a modified comparative fault jurisdiction. If you were more than 50% at fault for the accident, you will not be able to receive money to get your car fixed. However, the amount of money you receive will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
I Was Injured in A Northwest Indiana Car Accident with A Us Mail Truck; I Am Able to Receive Compensation for My Injuries?
Yes. A claim against the US Post Office falls under the Federal Tort Claims Act. The Act has specific requirements and documentation that needs to be submitted to the federal agency. If you are unable to come to a settlement against the federal agency, you are required to file your case in federal court. Also, under the Federal Tort Claims Act, the injured person is not entitled to a jury trial so the case will be tried before a federal court judge. Finally, attorney's fees are capped under the FTCA. If the claim is settled in the administrative process, the attorney's fees are capped at 20%. If the claim is tried, the fees attorney's fees are 25%.
How Much Is My Northwest Indiana Car Accident Case Worth?
The value of a person's Northwest Indiana car accident case depends on a number of factors, which include the following: (1) the severity of the car crash; (2) the nature and extent of the injuries; (3) whether the injured person lost time from work; (4) whether the injuries will cause the person to lose time from work in the future or lose the ability to earn money in the future; (5) past medical and hospital expenses; (6) future medical and hospital expenses if any; (7) the nature and extent of any permanent injury; (8) the injured person's past medical history; (9) pain and suffering damages; and (10) if there is sufficient insurance or some other type of proceeds to fully compensate the injured person. If you consult an attorney regarding your Northwest Indiana car accident and they tell you that your case is worth so much, ask that attorney to put it in writing and hire him.
Will My Indiana Car Accident Case Have to Go to Trial?
Indiana car accident cases go to trial for two major reasons: (1) a liability dispute (the parties cannot come to terms with who was at fault for the accident); or (2) either the injured person or the insurance company is being unrealistic about the value of the case. Most car accident cases settle and if they didn't settle, the courts would be unable to handle the backlog of cases.
I Was in An Indiana Car Accident the Other Day, and I Received a Message from The Other Driver's Insurance Adjuster; Should I Speak to The Adjuster?
As a general rule, we do not allow our clients to speak with the other party's insurance adjuster without one of our attorneys present. We allow our clients to speak to the insurance adjuster regarding property damage if liability (fault for the accident) needs to be established. Finally, we never allow our clients to give a recorded statement to the other driver's insurance company.
I Was Injured in An Indiana Car Accident and The Other Driver's Insurance Adjuster Wants Me to Sign a Medical Release Allowing Her to Gather My Medical Records, She Said that It Will Help Settle My Case; Should I Sign the Medical Release?
As a general rule, we do not allow our clients to provide the other driver's insurance adjuster with a medical authorization allowing the release of their medical records. Generally, these releases are too broad and allow the insurance company to get too much information. If a person is going to handle their own case, it would be in their best interest to pay the copy cost for their own records and go through the records and remove irrelevant and embarrassing information.
I Was Injured in An Indiana Car Accident by A Driver with No Insurance; Am I Able to Get Compensation for My Injuries?
Yes. You will be able to receive compensation under your uninsured motorist coverage. If you own a vehicle in Indiana and you have complied with the minimum insurance requirements, you have $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident in uninsured motorist coverage.
I Recently Learned that I Was Injured in A Northwest Indiana Car Accident by A Drunk Driver, how Does that Impact My Case?
Generally, drunk driving cases will have a higher settlement value because jurors do not like drunk drivers.
How Long Will My Northwest Indiana Car Accident Case Take to Settle?
Every case is different. Some of the factors that will determine the length of your case are: (1) the nature and extent of your injuries; (2) the length of time you need medical treatment; (3) whether the defendant has accepted fault for the accident; (4) whether you have a number of underlying or pre-existing medical conditions.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire Your Firm to Represent Me in A Northwest Indiana Car Accident Claim?
It will cost you nothing upfront. Our firm handles personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. We will only take a fee if we receive a recovery on your behalf. If there is no recovery, there are no attorney's fees.
I Lost A Lot of Time from Work Because of The Injuries that I Received in My Northwest Indiana Car Accident; Will I Be Able to Recover These Lost Wages?
Yes. Lost wages are an element of damages that the other person's insurance company will pay if you are able to show the following: (1) the other party was at fault for the accident; (2) you were injured in the accident; and (3) a doctor took you off of work because of your injuries.
How Will My Prior Worker's Compensation Claim Impact My Northwest Indiana Car Accident Claim?
If you had a prior injury to the same area of the body that you injured in the car accident, your prior injury may impact your claim. Some of the factors that need to be determined are the nature and extent of the prior injury, how long ago was the prior injury, did you have any residual problems from the prior injury, and what was your physical health like in the time leading up to the accident.
I Did Not Have a Valid Driver's License when I Was Injured in An Indiana Car Accident; how Will that Impact My Claim?
Not having a valid driver's license will not impact your Indiana car accident claim. The fact that you were not licensed has nothing to do with the determination of who was at fault for the accident. If your case goes to trial, a jury will not know that you were not licensed because it is not relevant.
If I'm Hit and Injured by Car that Left the Scene, Can I Receive Money for My Injuries?
If you are injured in an Indiana hit and run accident you will be able to receive compensation under your uninsured motorist insurance.
Will I Have to Go to Court for My Indiana Car Accident Claim?
The only time you will have to go to court regarding your Indiana car accident case is if the case goes to trial. If the case settles before trial, you will not see the inside of a courtroom.