A whiplash injury can be serious, but it isn’t always noticeable at first. It is always important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after an accident. Failure to do so could damage your case, as a delayed diagnosis will cast doubts about the legitimacy of your injury.
At the Morelli Law Firm, we know the struggle that whiplash victims can face in obtaining fair compensation for their injury. Our Yonkers whiplash accident lawyers will fight for your rights and do everything in our power to get your life back on track after an accident.
Seek Medical Attention After a Car Accident
When involved in an automobile crash, it is critical that you seek out medical attention after the accident. Letting paramedics examine you at the scene is quite important, but that is not enough. Once you are free to leave the scene of the accident, your first stop should be to see a doctor.
Whiplash is one of several injuries that may not initially manifest after an accident. In part due to the adrenaline released into your body during a car accident, it is easy to not be fully aware of how your body is truly feeling. When you wait to seek medical attention after an accident, it can greatly harm your compensation claim.
The liable party will likely argue that your injury is either fake or the result of some other incident unrelated to the crash. Getting a thorough check-up from a doctor after an accident can help ensure that all the injuries you suffered are properly documented.
How Can a Whiplash Accident Lawyer in Yonkers Help You?
After you hire a whiplash accident lawyer in Yonkers, one of the first things they will do is get to work investigating your accident. The purpose of the investigation will be to discover who is liable, as well as gathering evidence in support of your compensation claim. Common steps that your lawyer and their investigative team will likely take include:
- Visiting the scene of the accident
- Interviewing witnesses
- Consulting with experts
- Obtaining a copy of the official accident report
- Reviewing your medical files related to the injuries sustained in the accident
Once your attorney has completed their investigation, they will assess your damages. It is important to have all your damages fully documented at this point so that your lawyer can accurately calculate the true value of your claim.
Once that is done, your attorney will prepare and file your lawsuit along with any other necessary paperwork. Then, they will begin going through the steps of the pre-trial process. Finally, your lawyer will represent you in court if necessary.
As your lawyer goes through these steps, they will also be in negotiation with opposing counsel, trying to get you an agreeable settlement offer. They will also be in constant contact with you, updating you on the progress of your case, informing you of any settlement offers, and advising you about any actions you might want to consider.
Yonkers Whiplash Injury Lawyer Near Me 877-751-9800
Possible Damages You May Claim After a Whiplash Accident
When injured in a car accident, there are several potential damages you may be eligible to claim. The specific damages that apply to your case depend upon the particulars of your case. Damages can be separated into three different categories:
Economic damages are the damages to which one can easily assign a dollar amount. The most common economic damages claimed by whiplash accident victims are:
- Medical costs
- Lost wages
- Diminished earning capacity
- Property damage
All these damages either result in an accident victim having to pay money or not being able to earn money. The calculations for future medical expenses are more complicated than for the medical costs you have already accrued.
However, they are still largely straightforward and can be determined fairly accurately based on medical expenses accrued by others in similar situations.
These are much more difficult to accurately assess. Common non-economic damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of companionship
With all these damages, it can be very difficult to assign a dollar figure. Deciding the true value for an individual’s diminished quality of life caused by a permanent disability is an impossible task. Yet, since money is the best our legal system is able to offer to those who have suffered these types of losses, determining monetary compensation is important.
Because non-economic damages cover such great losses, these tend to make up the bulk of a compensation payout after an accident.
In some situations, punitive damages may also be awarded. Punitive damages are different from other damages in that they do not compensate a victim for a loss they have suffered. Instead, punitive damages are meant to punish a liable party if their actions were particularly dangerous.
Punitive damages are only awarded in extreme cases, where the liable party is found to have acted in a manner that was willfully negligent and performed with complete disregard for the safety of others.
How Much Does a Yonkers Whiplash Accident Lawyer Charge?
The cost of hiring a whiplash accident attorney in Yonkers is often a deterrent for many. However, when it comes to personal injury cases, it never should be. Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. That means that they only receive a payment if they are able to secure your compensation.
When you have your initial case evaluation with your attorney, they will discuss their fee, which will be a percentage of your compensation payout.
On average, those who hire an attorney end up with a significantly greater payout (even after the lawyer’s fees have been deducted) than those who attempt to represent themselves.
The contingency fee payment structure also gives clients the peace of mind that their attorney will do everything within their power to secure a payout. Not only that, but since the lawyer’s payment rises as the size of the compensation package increases, you can feel confident that they will attempt to get you the biggest payout they can manage.
What Is the Statute of Limitations for Filing a Lawsuit in New York?
In New York State, you generally have three years from the date of the accident in which you can file a lawsuit.
Despite this large window in which to file, you should always get started by hiring an attorney as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the weaker your claim. Delays can cause evidence to become lost or corrupted, and witness testimony grows less reliable with each passing day.
Additionally, there are certain situations in which the three-year period is significantly reduced. A whiplash accident attorney can advise you on the particulars of your case.
Taking a Settlement vs. Going to Court for a Whiplash Accident
One decision that you will likely be faced with at multiple points after an accident, is whether to take a settlement offer or go to court. There are pros and cons to each situation.
When it comes to the first settlement offer, it is generally advisable to say no. The initial offer is nearly always going to be far below a fair value for your accident claim. However, most of the time, you will want to take a settlement offer eventually.
While there is always the potential for a higher payout if you go to court, it is rarely worth the risk. A courtroom trial can be unpredictable. Additionally, it will greatly increase the amount of time it takes to receive compensation.
Your Yonkers whiplash accident attorney will continue to negotiate for a fair settlement offer. If they can reach a deal that provides you with the compensation you need to get your life back on track, it is advisable to take it.
Hiring a Whiplash Accident Attorney in Yonkers, New York
When you have suffered a whiplash injury, it is important to have experienced legal representation on your side. Whiplash can be difficult to prove, so having an attorney with experience defending clients who have suffered this injury is vital. At the Morelli Law Firm, our team knows what it takes to get fair compensation for a whiplash accident.
Schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our Yonkers whiplash accident attorneys today. Give us a call, or fill out our online contact form to get started with a free case evaluation. One of our whiplash accident lawyers will review your case and advise you about your options.