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Car Accident Settlements & Lawsuits: What to Expect from Your Case

by The Beasley Firm  |  October 31, 2022  |  

A Guide to Pennsylvania Car Accident Cases

Being injured in a car accident can change your life. You may be unable to work or have difficulty doing the things that were once routine. In many cases, you might be entitled to compensation for your injuries that can help you cover unexpected, accident-related costs. 

At The Beasley Firm, we help individuals and their families understand what to expect after a car accident. We fight to secure fair and full settlements for our clients and are always ready and willing to take cases to trial to get our clients the recovery they deserve. If you have been injured in an auto accident in Philadelphia or the surrounding areas, contact our office at (215) 866-2424 to schedule a free consultation. 

Here is what to expect if you are injured in a car accident in Pennsylvania:

  1. Investigation

First, if you are involved in an accident, even if you are not injured, you must stop. It is against Pennsylvania law to leave the scene of an accident. Under Section 3744 of the Consolidated Statutes, a driver involved in an accident must not only exchange information with the other party or parties but must also render reasonable aid. 

Law enforcement should be called immediately to the scene of an accident where there are injuries or death. The officer will then begin investigating the accident and may ask you to make a statement. 

It is important to be honest and not give opinions as to what you believed caused the accident. Making admissions of fault may impact your financial recovery. The officer will prepare an accident or investigation report regarding his or her findings. 

  1. Seeking Medical Treatment

After an auto accident, your top priority should be seeking medical treatment. Even if you do not believe that you are seriously injured, you should still be seen by a medical professional. Injuries may not be obvious in the immediate aftermath of an accident. Your body may be in shock and unable to process the true harm of the impact.

Your medical records may prove critical in your case. To obtain damages you will have to show the extent of your injuries, which usually needs to be verified by a healthcare provider. 

  1. Evidence Collection

In addition to medical records, you will want to collect evidence regarding your case. If you are able ask for the contact information for any eyewitnesses to the accident. As soon as possible after the accident, you will want to consult with a Philadelphia car accident lawyer who can help you understand your rights and obtain the information you need to prove your claim.

  1. Filing an Insurance Claim

It is strongly recommended that you speak with an attorney prior to making a statement with the insurance adjuster. Pennsylvania is a unique state in that it allows people to choose fault-based or no-fault insurance policies. 

The type of insurance that you have will greatly impact how you will receive compensation. An attorney can help you determine the best course of action to take depending on the type of insurance you have. 

  1. Determination of Damages

While many car accident victims are eager to settle their cases quickly, it is important to wait until a fair and full settlement offer has been made. Accepting a quick cash offer or the first offer given by the insurance company is usually not in your best interest. Early settlement offers rarely reflect the true value of your case.

An attorney can help you receive compensation for all of your damages, including money for your:

  • Medical bills
  • Future medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future income
  • Loss of consortium
  • Loss of enjoyment of life
  • Pain and suffering

In general, car accident victims without legal representation end up settling their cases for significantly less than those that have an attorney. An attorney can help you at every stage of your case including filing a claim with the insurance company, investigating who was at fault, negotiating for a fair settlement, and taking your case to trial if necessary.

  1. Filing a Lawsuit

If a fair settlement offer cannot be reached during negotiations, then your attorney may file a lawsuit. In Pennsylvania, you only have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit based on personal injury. 

After the lawsuit is filed, your case will enter what is referred to as the discovery phase. During discovery, information such as your medical records, police report, and other documents related to your case will be reviewed by both parties. There may also be depositions where you are asked questions about the accident.

Prior to trial, the court may order that the parties try mediation to resolve the matter. If the matter cannot be resolved through mediation it will be set for trial. 

Contact Our Office for a Free Case Evaluation

If you were injured in a Philadelphia car accident, contact our office at (215) 866-2424 for a free consultation. Let us help you get the compensation you deserve. Call now to get started.

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