Personal injury is a common reason for filing a civil lawsuit in Indiana. While a personal injury lawyer will work on cases involving people with physical injuries, the focus of such attorneys is actually much broader. In addition to the damage to a victim’s body (physical injuries), the cases can involve emotional or reputational damage. If you are in an auto accident and working with a Carmel personal injury lawyer, you will typically sue for physical and emotional injury.
There are three reasons to file a personal injury lawsuit: negligence, liability, and intentional wrongs.
- Negligence is the most common reason an injury attorney would use in a civil personal injury suit. This type of case requires that the plaintiff prove the defendant did not take reasonable steps to protect the people around them. For example, a driver who was speeding, drunk, or on their mobile phone when they caused an accident could be guilty of negligence.
- Strict liability happens when a person or company is responsible for an accident even if they were not negligent. This type of case could happen if there was a faulty product or a poorly maintained road.
- Willful wrongs usually come from abuse or assault cases. A personal injury lawyer will usually focus on intent in court and prove that the defendant meant to harm or specifically targeted the victim.
Carmel Injury Lawyers Holding Negligent Individuals Responsible
The goal of a personal injury lawyer is to seek just compensation for injuries sustained as a result of negligence, faulty products, or willful wrong by another party. Though they may provide evidence or provide advice to you regarding any criminal case related to your accident, they are not involved in criminal prosecution. Their sole focus is your civil case.
For example, if you are involved in a car accident claim, the Noblesville accident attorneys only goal is to get compensation for your injuries and other damages you suffered as a result of the incident. In other words, the goal is to get the financial support necessary to make the injured party whole again. In the case of fatal accidents or accidents that cause life-altering injuries, this is not possible, but the victim’s family can still pursue compensation.
In addition to representing your interests in a civil lawsuit, an injury law firm can negotiate with the defendant’s lawyers to come up with a settlement before the case goes before a judge.
Finally, your legal representative can negotiate with the insurance companies involved in the case to find a fair settlement for your claims. In many cases, insurance companies will attempt to get a quick settlement to avoid having to pay for future medical care or lost wages. Your lawyer negotiates with insurers on your behalf to ensure a fair amount of financial support from the insurer.
What Types of Cases Does SLG Accident Attorneys Handle?
Our Carmel personal injury law firm works with clients in Carmel and the wider Hamilton County area. As personal injury lawyers with extensive experience in Indiana, we will be able to provide the support and legal guidance necessary to get the best result from your case and ensure you get just compensation from the insurance company and any negligent parties involved in the accident.
Here are the types of cases we can handle for Carmel and Hamilton County clients:
Auto accidents are quite common in the United States. In 2019, there were 6,756,000 motor vehicle crashes reported to the Carmel police department and other law enforcement. Of these 6.7 million accidents, 1,916,000 involved injuries, and 33,244 of the wrecks on roadways led to fatalities.
During accidents involving speed and aggressive driving, 50% of injuries happen. These factors are more common on highways and interstates. Some of the more dangerous highways in Indiana include Interstate 465 (I-465) and Interstate 69 (I-69). U.S. Highways 421 and 31 also see injury accidents, as does State Road 37.
There are different types of car accidents. The details of your case, your injuries, and the evidence your Carmel car accident lawyer needs to present may depend on the type of accident you experienced. Here are some examples:
- Head-on collisions are often very serious because the two cars are traveling in opposite directions and hit each other with full force, doubling the energy of the impact. Though the accident could be due to poor weather or visibility, negligence often plays a role in these types of accidents.
- Rear-end accidents happen when one car slams into the back of another one. This type of incident usually involves negligence on the part of the driver who hits the back of the other car — unless the front motorist slams on their brakes. Rear-end accidents often lead to injuries like whiplash, back and neck pain, or nerve damage, which can bring long-lasting discomfort.
- Fatal car accidents directly cause the death of someone involved in the incident. When it comes to legal action, there could be both criminal and civil cases with this type of crash. The family and other dependents of the deceased person are entitled to compensation to help with end-of-life costs. A fatal car accident attorney can also help them receive money for pain and suffering, punitive damages, and future loss of income, companionship, and support.
- Rollover accidents can likewise be very serious because they typically mean that the incident happened at high speeds on the highway. These accidents can cause significant injuries, especially if someone gets ejected from one of the cars. Seatbelt use could come into play during the negotiations with the insurance companies and the court case.
- Lyft/Uber accidents are unique because they involve a commercial driver, and the passengers may not have to deal with their own insurance company. In these cases, you need a personal injury lawyer who can deal with insurance companies and who understands the requirements that Lyft and Uber drivers need to follow.
- Highway accidents are typically more serious than those that occur on side streets. Since speed plays a big role in these incidents, injuries are more common.
- Wrong-way accidents, like head-on collisions, usually involve severe negligence by one of the drivers. In such cases, if there are significant injuries, you may be able to sue for pain and suffering and punitive damages in addition to any medical costs and lost wages you might experience as a result of the accident.
While many accidents involve cars, they sometimes include other vehicles on the roadways.
Indiana is a busy place for interstate trucking. It is a convergence zone with drivers from different interstate hubs using interstates to carry goods across the state to their final destinations. I-90, I-64, I-65, I-74, and I-80 are major trucking routes. Many transport companies have hubs or headquarters in and around Indianapolis.
This traffic means there is a risk of truck accidents. These rigs can weigh up to 40 tons, so even a seemingly minor accident at low speeds can be very serious for a smaller vehicle.
Accidents are also unique because the personal injury lawyer will deal with the truck driver, their insurer, and the trucking company’s insurance and lawyers. These incidents typically require the expertise of a lawyer experienced with Indiana traffic laws and the conditions around Hamilton County.
An experienced Carmel motorcycle accident lawyer can tell you that motorcyclists lack the protection of vehicles, which have seatbelts, airbags, and steel frames to protect occupants. In 2019, there were 112 fatal motorcycle accidents in Indiana. In recent years, motorcycle deaths made up between 12% and 19% of all road accident deaths, even though a vast majority of the vehicles on roadways are cars.
Motorcycle accidents that do not result in death can still be extremely serious and lead to life-altering injuries and permanent paralysis. This is important from a legal perspective because it means the liable party and their insurer may be responsible for lifelong expenses for the victim, including ongoing medical treatment and physical therapy, lost wages, and other financial support for dependents.
Catastrophic accidents result in permanent physical damage to the victims. In addition to the loss of a limb or permanent paralysis from a spinal cord injury, these incidents could cause a traumatic brain injury or other disability that could lead to lifelong damage. People who have this type of injury may be unable to work or support dependents for the rest of their lives.
As with severe motorcycle accidents, these life-altering events may require ongoing financial support from negligent parties and insurers. In 2020, 17,188 people suffered incapacitating injuries as a result of car, truck, or motorcycle accidents in Indiana. That accounted for 6.2% of all accident victims in the state.
Wrongful and Accidental Deaths
Wrongful deaths occur as the result of negligence on the part of a driver. In these cases, the victim’s surviving family members and any other dependents or loved ones may be entitled to compensation for medical and funeral expenses. Depending on the situation, they could also receive economic support for income the deceased person would have earned and support or companionship they would have provided to family members.
I Was Injured in an Accident. What Do I Do?
There are several things to do if you were involved in an auto accident:
- The first step in the process is to receive a complete medical evaluation. The report the examining physician provides can provide important evidence for the subsequent insurance claims and civil court cases. Some injuries — such as those involving the brain, soft tissue, and nerves — may not be evident until later. Adrenaline, a hormone that gets produced when people are under stress, can also mask pain until hours after an accident.
- After a medical examination and necessary treatment, you should contact an attorney. You should do this before speaking with an insurance company or offering additional information to law enforcement or accident investigators.
- Once you have a personal injury attorney to represent you, you can start testifying to investigators. You will also likely have to offer insights to the lawyers so that they can build a case and have evidence to use when negotiating with insurers and defense lawyers.
These steps can all affect how much you get from a personal injury settlement.
How Is a Personal Injury Settlement Calculated?
A personal injury lawyer will pursue a just settlement for your accident. What does this mean?
Here are the factors that your accident attorney will consider:
- Medical bills and future medical costs for injuries related to the accident, including medical equipment and physical therapy
- Wages lost while you were recuperating from your injuries
- Future salary lost because of life-altering injuries
- Property damage, including the cost to repair or replace the vehicle
- Pain and suffering, which puts a monetary value on the physical pain experienced as a result of the accident and emotional distress
In a fatal accident, these settlement amounts get passed to the family of the deceased person.
What Makes Carmel Unique
Carmel, Indiana, is a suburb of 100,000 people just to the north of Indianapolis in Hamilton County. It is well known for its upscale shopping and the galleries of the Carmel Arts & Design District.
In addition to these attractions, there are several performing arts venues and the Plum Creek and Prairie View Golf Clubs. Major financial services providers like CNO Financial Group and insurers Liberty Mutual and Geico have offices in Carmel.
Injury Law Firm in Carmel, Indiana
If you are seeking a Carmel personal injury lawyer, consider the undefeated civil trial lawyers at SLG Accident Attorneys. We have extensive experience dealing with personal injury claims in Indiana. This includes negotiating with insurance companies to get fair financial support for our clients after an auto accident, motorcycle accident, or other catastrophic event, working with defense lawyers to get a just settlement, and taking cases to civil court when necessary.
In addition to Carmel our injury law firm serves Fishers, Noblesville, Greenwood, Indianapolis, and the greater Hamilton County area.