I am sorry you have found yourself in this situation. In cases where there are no witnesses, liability may be a bit more challenging to prove. It's a good thing you have retained an attorney to assist you. It's also important that you feel comfortable contacting your attorney and getting his or her advice and counsel regarding any concerns you may have.
First off, do not speak to the opposing party's insurance company without your lawyer. At this point, all communications should go through your attorney.
Second, there are many ways to attempt to determine who is at fault. There may be witnesses that you don't know about yet. There may be marks on the road at the accident site that may help. The way the vehicles hit one another can also indicate the position of the vehicles. The police report may indicate the factors that, in the police officer's mind, contributed to the accident. Your attorney will obtain these as well as other available evidence in order to help your case.
If you have further questions or concerns, I'd be happy to help.
Do not give a statement to the insurance companies without first talking with your lawyer. Insurance adjusters are trained to take statements that work against your interest.
If you have a lawyer, they should be able to answer all these questions. The good thing about hiring a lawyer is that they will talk to the insurance companies for you. Make sure the lawyer you hire is experienced in car wreck and personal injury cases.
If you get served with papers from the other driver suing you, send them immediately to your lawyer and your insurance company.
Assuming your attorney has placed them on notice that he represents you, they are not allowed to contact you. You should not talk the other insurance company at all. If they do call you, refer them to your lawyer.
It is your lawyer's job to decide what tactics to use to prove the other driver is at fault. You really should discuss his/her strategy with him/her.
All information provided here is for educational use only and does not constitute legal advice nor establish any attorney-client relationship. Paul H. Cannon is licensed to practice law in the State of Texas. Laws vary from State-to-State. For legal advice and opinions, please retain the services of a lawyer licensed to practice in the appropriate state or jurisdiction.
You should discuss these questions with your attorney. Do not talk to the other side.
This is not legal advice. You should always discuss the specifics of your issue in person with an attorney. Be aware that there are time limits on all claims that depend on the kind of claim, so do not delay in seeking an attorney.
Let the lawyer you hired for this case handle deal with the matter.
This answer is intended to be general in nature and not specific as to any person or fact situation. No attorney-client relationship exists for those reading this answer and readers should contact an attorney of their choosing for legal advice on their specific situation.
You will be paying your lawyer good money to handle your case and answer your questions. Call him or her for their input.
If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.
Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.
This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.
Don't give ANY statements without first consulting with your lawyer.
This answer is for general education purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship nor is it intended to provide legal advice. The answer is based on the limited information provided and the answer might be different had additional information been provided. You should consult an attorney.
As previously advised, make sure to speak to your attorney first. I have handled many cases like yours and it is always best to make sure that the information you offer the insurance company is minimal and 100% to your benefit. Good luck.
Policies for interviewing accident witnesses vary between insurance companies. Some insurers don't take recorded statements in cases involving relatively minor injuries. However, if a case is viewed as having the potential for litigation--usually meaning higher damages--it is pretty rare for the opposing insurance company to not seek your recorded statement. They will normally do this quickly, before you have a chance to forget critical facts, and while you are still unrepresented. You do not have to talk with them, but you should follow the advice of the lawyer you retained. In our practice, I generally allow my clients to give such recorded statements, but only if I am present in the event the adjuster gets out of line. You should also ask for a transcribed copy of the recorded statement to be provided, and any legitimate insurer will do so.
The way fault is determined is by looking at various factors. The way the accident facts are established is by witnesses who saw the accident. Regrettably, bystander witnesses are often not available either because they didn't stop, as is often the case in rush hour, couldn't safely stop, or left the scene without leaving their identifying information. If you have such witnesses available, make sure you stay in touch with them and share their information with your attorney, who may try to procure their statement. If no bystander witnesses are available, you will have to rely on your own testimony, that of any passengers in your vehicle, and occasionally, the other side. It doesn't happen often, but once in awhile the other side admits fault or says something that amounts to an admission. Unless they are represented by counsel, I always try to obtain their statement early, as well.The policeman is correct that he cannot determine fault. He was merely doing his job by showing up and taking down the accident scene facts as he saw them. Some people are tempted to ascribe heavier weight to his testimony; but he was not even a bystander. Still, it is valuable to obtain a copy of his report to see if it supports you or works against you. Your attorney can then advise you on whether to contact the officer and perhaps take his deposition in a lawsuit.
No answer given by Armstrong the Law Firm or its lawyers on the internet shall be deemed to create an attorney client relationship. Answers give are general guidelines only, and should not be relied upon by the questioner as a basis for action. Rather, the questioner is urged to consult a qualified attorney in his own jurisdiction.
I suggest you immediately consult with an attorney who is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. I also suggest that you not give any statements to any insurance company until you consult with and/or retain an attorney to represent you in this matter. Insurance company adjusters are trained to make claimants believe their claims are not valuable because all the insurance company cares about is paying you as little as possible regardless of the severity of your injuries. Good luck. www.urhurt.com
By providing this legal analysis of the issue presented, no attorney/client relationship is being formed. Additionally, attorney is not agreeing to represent the individual who presented the question concerning the legal issue. A signed retainer agreement is required before an attorney /client relationship is established. The analysis provided is meant solely to provide general guidance about the legal issue presented.
Sign up to receive a 3-part series of useful information and advice about personal injury law.