Injured In A Car Accident? Let Our Attorneys Fight For The Compensation You Deserve.
Car accidents often have life-changing consequences, including serious injuries or deaths, medical bills, lost income, property damage and more. If someone else was responsible for causing your accident, Indiana law allows you to seek compensation from insurers and the at-fault driver. But handling this process on your own can be time-consuming and difficult, especially while trying to focus on your physical health and taking care of your family.
Thankfully, experienced legal help is available when you contact Hilbrich Law Firm. Since our firm was founded in 1952, we have been serving the legal needs of personal injury victims throughout northwest Indiana. We can represent you following any type of motor vehicle accident, including those involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, pedestrians, bicyclist and more. We provide free consultations and take these cases on a contingency-fee basis, which means if there is no recovery, there is no attorney fee.
How Indiana’s Auto Insurance Laws Affect Accident Claims
Indiana is an “at-fault” state, meaning that anyone who is injured or suffers damages in a vehicular accident must prove a driver was negligent and file a claim with the liable driver’s insurance policy or his own company if the driver or vehicle was not insured. In the event that a claimant’s damages are expensive or medical bills exceed the compensation limits set by the liable driver’s policy, he may be entitled to file a claim with his own insurance company, for the remaining amount. They can also personally sue the other party involved.
Our state also recognizes the “no pay, no play” principle. Essentially, if an uninsured motorist is injured or suffers damages in a car accident and an insured driver is at fault, the uninsured driver will not be permitted to claim any financial compensation for physical injury, pain, suffering, or mental anguish. It should be noted that this is only applicable to a motorist who was uninsured at the time of the accident and who has received a prior violation in the state.
Liability insurance can cover the driver of the insured vehicle in question, even if they are not the registered owner. This can allow family and friends to be protected, as well as neighbors, coworkers, and anyone else with permission to drive the car. The policy will typically cover damages, injuries, and medical bills for passengers, pedestrians, and any other drivers.
What Types Of Compensation Can You Claim After A Crash?
There are a range of damages that you may be able to claim, so long as you can prove that the other driver was negligent. These include compensation for:
- Physical injuries, disability, and impairment
- Pain and suffering
- Vehicle repairs and damage
- Lost income and reduced earning capacity
- Health care and hospital bills
- Physical therapy costs and expenses
- Medication co-pays
- Emotional distress
- Loss of use of vehicle
- Diminished value of vehicle
Calculating these costs accurately can be difficult, which is why it is critical to work with an experienced attorney like those at our firm. We take the time to carefully assess your claim and advocate for maximum compensation.
Should You Be Communicating With Insurers?
You definitely need to involve insurers early in the process. Failure to contact or cooperate with your own insurance company may reduce or eliminate your coverage. Also, you may have rights and benefits under your policy that you may not know of. However, we recommend you contact us first. Insurers are primarily interested in protecting their own bottom line, and are looking for any reason to deny or limit you claim. We know what to say – and what to avoid saying – to insurers, and we can handle all of these communications on your behalf.
When it comes to speaking with the at-fault driver’s insurer, you have no obligation to do so, and you should not communicate without the help of your lawyer.
Preparing For Your First Meeting With Our Firm
There are numerous steps you can take to get your case off to a strong start. Items you should bring to your first meeting with our attorneys include:
- Pictures of the vehicles involved
- Pictures of the scene of the accident
- A copy of your vehicle’s repair estimate
- A copy of the accident report
- Information about the person who caused the accident and his/her insurance claim information
- Names and contact information of any witnesses
- Your medical records and bills
- Pictures of your injuries
- Your insurance policy and claim information
- A list of health care providers you treated with for your injuries
It’s OK if you don’t have all of this information ahead of time. We would still be happy to meet with you and explain your options. Please don’t wait too long to take action, however. Indiana’s statute of limitations gives adult claimants a maximum of two years to file a lawsuit, starting from the day the accident occurred. If you attempt to file a claim after this period, it is likely your case will not be considered.
Ready To Get Started? Contact Us For A Free Case Evaluation.
With offices in Highland, Crown Point and Portage, Hilbrich Law Firm serves clients across northwest Indiana. If you were injured in a car accident caused by a negligent driver, get in touch today for a free discussion of your legal options. Call us at 219-444-4330 or submit an online contact form.