Every year, thousands of victims are killed or injured in West Virginia car accidents. It takes just the blink of an eye for one driver’s carelessness to result in tragedy, and it can happen to anyone on West Virginia’s roads and highways.
The number of traffic fatalities in West Virginia has been declining in recent years, which is good news. But even though the numbers are falling, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 315 people died in West Virginia traffic accidents in 2010. That means West Virginia’s traffic fatality rate ranks 34th among the states. There’s too much risk facing everyone – West Virginia drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and others – on the state’s roads.
If you’ve been hurt in a West Virginia motor vehicle accident, we at Underwood Law Offices, Inc. understand the difficulties you’re facing. It’s impossible to focus on healing from your injuries when you’re concerned about your family’s welfare. You’re worried about your job and making ends meet, all while trying to deal with insurance companies that don’t have your best interests at heart.
Contact Our West Virginia Car Accident Attorneys
The trusted West Virginia personal injury attorneys at Underwood Law Offices, Inc. are ready to help you through the disruption and anxiety that follow any serious auto accident. We have the knowledge and hard-won experience to handle any motor vehicle accident case, no matter how complicated.
We’d like to start helping you today. To reach us, simply call 866-523-0499, or use our convenient online form. Our seasoned car accident attorneys represent personal injury victims throughout West Virginia from our offices in Huntington. Whether you’re in Huntington, Charleston, South Charleston, Morgantown, Wheeling, Clarksburg, Beckley, Augusta, or elsewhere in West Virginia, contact us today to get help with your case.
We Know How To Get Results
Even if you’ve been turned away by other law firms, we want to discuss your case in a free initial consultation. We’re proud to have won cases for clients that other lawyers rejected because they didn’t think they could win.
With almost fifty years’ of combined experience, our attorneys understand what it takes to get maximum results for personal injury victims and their families. Among our recent results, we achieved a $2.25 million recovery for a personal injury client, $1.9 million in recoveries for three clients injured by a pharmaceutical manufacturer, and a $796,000 settlement for a client.
Our results for clients prove we know how to get substantial compensation in serious personal injury and wrongful death cases. But every client’s case is different. Schedule a consultation with one of our West Virginia personal injury attorneys so we can explain what you might expect in your situation, and how we can put our skills and experience to work for you and your family.
Important Facts About West Virginia Auto Accidents
Our experience representing West Virginia car accident victims shows that several factors commonly contribute to serious motor vehicle accidents in the state:
- Drunk driving – In 2010, 88 people died in West Virginia traffic accidents in which drunk driving was a factor. That was over a quarter of the state’s traffic fatalities for that year. Mothers Against Drunk Driving ranks the state 20th in the nation in terms of its percentage of alcohol-related traffic deaths.
- Speeding and reckless driving – Excessive speed is a huge contributor to West Virginia traffic fatalities, being cited as a factor in 133 traffic deaths in 2010, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. That’s forty-two percent of the state’s traffic deaths and high above the national average. Driving too fast for existing road conditions kills.
- Distracted driving – Driver distraction contributed to 13 fatal crashes in West Virginia in 2010, according to figures tallied by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Almost half of the distractions involved either using cell phones or eating/drinking/smoking while driving. Driver distraction is a major issue in today’s driving environment, where cell phones, music players, and navigation equipment all compete for a driver’s attention.
West Virginia auto accidents often raise special legal issues, as well. It’s important to be represented by an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney who can skillfully navigate issues such as:
- Complex insurance matters – West Virginia’s Compulsory Insurance Law requires that all registered vehicles be covered by liability insurance that will provide benefits for injuries and property damage after an accident. The minimum amount of coverage required is $20,000 for one accident, one injury, $40,000 for one accident, two or more injuries, and $10,000 for property damage. Many drivers carry only enough coverage to meet the minimum required limits. Others drive unlawfully without any insurance at all. That means if another driver is at fault in your accident, you might have to rely on your own insurance coverage for accidents involving uninsured or underinsured motorists (UM/UIM).
- Partial fault – If other drivers share the blame for your car accident, or if the accident was partially your fault, this can affect what compensation you receive and how much the other drivers have to pay. Under West Virginia law, you cannot recover compensation if your own fault in your car accident equals or exceeds 50 percent of the combined negligence of others involved in the accident. Otherwise, if you’re partially at fault, your recovery will be reduced by the amount of your own fault in the wreck.
What To Do If You’re In A West Virginia Car Crash
The most important thing you can do right after any car accident is see a doctor. You need medical evaluation and treatment immediately, both to ensure your health and safety, and to make the extent of your injuries clear. Tell your doctor about everywhere you hurt, and ensure that your doctor records that information in your medical report. You want to be sure that your doctor knows about every injury you might have. Plus, your doctor needs to be fully informed so that he or she can evaluate you for injuries – possibly dangerous and life-threatening ones – you might not even know you have.
You also need to report your accident to your own insurance company as soon after the accident as you can. If you wait too long, you risk complications with your claim. In the worst case, your insurance company may reject your claim if you don’t give notice of the accident soon enough. It’s important, though, that you do not give any recorded or written statement about your accident to any insurance company, whether yours or that of another person involved in the accident, until you have consulted with a experienced West Virginia personal injury lawyer.
It’s also a good idea to begin keeping notes after your car accident, recording details about how the accident has affected your daily life. Write down specific information about your recovery, your injuries, and all expenses you’ve incurred because of the accident and your medical treatment. All of those things can be easy to forget over time, so keeping a good record means you’ll have the information at hand if it’s needed to support your claim for compensation from people who were at fault in your accident.
Finally, don’t ever sign any agreements presented to you by an insurance adjustor who wants to settle your claim without first getting advice from a qualified West Virginia motor vehicle accident lawyer. A skilled personal injury lawyer, like those at Underwood Law Offices, Inc., can help prevent you from giving up important rights and settling your case for less than you deserve.
Contact A Trusted Huntington Car Accident Attorney Today
Let one of the seasoned West Virginia personal injury attorneys at Underwood Law Offices, Inc. assist in the aftermath of your serious auto accident. Our attorneys want to help you recover the maximum compensation available under West Virginia law. From anywhere in West Virginia, including Huntington, Charleston, Fairmont, Parkersburg, Morgantown, and Beckley, you can reach one of your West Virginia vehicle accident lawyers by simply calling 866-523-0499. Or, simply use our convenient online form. We’ll schedule a confidential, free consultation to talk about your case and advise you about your legal rights.