Addressing Our Clients’ Confusion and Concerns, One Question at a Time
Injury claims are by their nature confusing, and insurance companies go out of their way to make them even more so. However, we believe our clients deserve straight answers to their questions—without confusing legal jargon. This is why, to better serve you, we address common injury questions as clearly as possible.
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How can a car’s black box help in my Henderson car accident case?
If the negligent driver’s insurance company disputes his liability for causing your car accident in Henderson, you will need evidence to prove his negligence. There are many types of helpful evidence. Pictures at the accident scene, eyewitness testimony, and expert witnesses are a few. One important item you do not want to overlook is the data recorder, or black box, in the vehicle that struck you.
Helpful Information Tracked by a Car’s Black Box
Many people are familiar with the black box on airplanes because they are always searched for after a crash to try to figure out the cause of the crash. Similarly, every automobile manufactured after 2014 is equipped with an event data recorder, as are many older vehicles. They can contain vital information to help show what the other driver was doing in the moments leading up to your accident. Some information tracked by these recorders includes:
- Speed prior to your collision
- Speed at the moment of impact
- Engine speed
- Steering angle at the time of the crash
- Whether brakes were applied
- Force of impact
- Seatbelt usage
- Airbag deployment
The black box data can be used by an accident reconstruction expert to help recreate your collision and show how the other driver—and not you—was at fault. Even without an expert, an experienced car accident attorney may be able to use some of the data to convince the insurance company of their responsibility to pay you a fair settlement.
How Long Do You Have to Obtain the Black Box Data?
You must act quickly to preserve the data on the black box before it is lost. Most devices will record over the data in approximately 30 days. However, the negligent driver and his insurance company most likely would not provide you with this information voluntarily. This is just another reason why it is so important to retain an experienced car accident attorney soon after your collision so that he can obtain the data if he believes it would help your case.
Do you have questions about your rights after a car accident in Henderson? Contact us online or call our Henderson office directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule your free consultation.
Is my car accident settlement or jury award taxable?
When you get to the end of your auto crash case in Henderson and you receive what you are entitled to either in a settlement or jury verdict, it can be a huge relief to put your accident ordeal behind you. However, there is one more matter to consider. Is the amount you received taxed by the IRS?
Taxability of Settlements in Henderson Car Accident Cases
If you suffered injuries caused by a negligent driver, you are entitled to be compensated for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. In the majority of car accident cases in Henderson, the settlement proceeds are paid to the victim in a lump sum settlement where all the compensation is lumped together in one payment with no specific designation as to what the amount is for. If you received your settlement in this fashion, you most likely would not owe any federal taxes on it.
Are Amounts Awarded by a Jury in a Car Accident Case Taxable?
It can be more complicated to determine whether you owe taxes on the judgment awarded to you at a jury trial. If the jury designates specific amounts for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering, some of the amount you receive may be taxable. Here is how it could work:
The amount awarded to reimburse you for medical expenses would not be taxed.
The lost wages portion of your award would be to make up for the paychecks you did not receive while you were off work recovering. Like your wages, you will owe taxes on this amount.
Pain and Suffering
Compensation for pain and suffering is more complicated. Any damages you receive for the physical pain and suffering is not taxed. This is commonly what a pain and suffering award is for. However, if any amount is being paid to you specifically for emotional distress, such as anxiety, depression, or other psychological conditions, federal taxes may be owed.
Punitive damages are a much rarer type of compensation that is only given when the at-fault driver’s actions are grossly negligent. They are designed to punish the other party and not to compensate you. Because of this, you would owe taxes on any amounts the jury designated as punitive damages.
Did a negligent driver in Henderson cause your auto collision? Our experienced car accident attorneys are here to answers your questions and fight for the compensation you deserve. We offer a free initial consultation. Contact us online or call our Henderson office directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule yours today.
What is the statute of limitations to sue the negligent driver in a car accident in Henderson?
If you or a loved one was injured in a Henderson car accident, one of the most important laws to understand is the statute of limitations to file your lawsuit against the negligent driver. While many cases settle without the need to file a civil complaint, you cannot guarantee this will happen in your case. Being certain to file your claim within the deadline to do so is essential if you want to obtain the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Statute of Limitations in Henderson Car Accidents
The statute of limitations is the deadline under Nevada law that you have to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver. If you fail to file your lawsuit within this time period, you face harsh penalties. The judge would most likely dismiss your case. Here are the deadlines you must follow:
Personal Injuries Statute of Limitations
You have two years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit for your personal injuries.
Property Damages Statute of Limitations
You must file a lawsuit for damages to your vehicle and any property in it within three years of the date of your collision.
Wrongful Death Statute of Limitations
If a family member died as a result of a car crash, you must file a wrongful death action within two years of the date of his death—not the accident date.
Special Statute of Limitations Rule for Minors
If a minor suffered injuries in an auto wreck, he is required to wait until he reaches 18 years old to file a lawsuit under Nevada law and then has two years to take legal action. However, the parents of a minor can ask the court for permission to file a lawsuit against the negligent driver on the minor’s behalf. If this request is granted, the minor would lose the right to pursue his claim once he turns 18 years old.
Contact Our Henderson Personal Injury Law Firm Today
If your car accident in Henderson occurred recently, you may feel like you have plenty of time to pursue your claim. However, you could weaken your case by waiting to retain an experienced car accident attorney soon after your wreck. Evidence could be destroyed, witnesses may disappear, and you could make mistakes that hurt your case. We urge you to contact us online or call our Henderson office directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule your free consultation. We will help to answer your questions and provide information on how we can fight to get the settlement you deserve.
When should I see a doctor following a car accident in Henderson?
While you know to seek medical treatment if you were hurt in a car accident in Henderson, you may not go to a doctor if you do not think you were injured. However, you do not want to make the mistake that many accident victims make of not seeking prompt medical care only to later discover that they were injured in the crash. Your best strategy for both your health and your claim for compensation against the negligent driver is to see a doctor within a few days of your collision.
Medical Dangers of Not Seeing a Doctor Following A Car Accident
You could be jeopardizing your health by not seeking prompt medical treatment. Adrenaline from the trauma of your collision could mask the symptoms of your injuries. So even though you may be hurt, you might not experience pain and other symptoms until the adrenaline wears off.
In addition, the symptoms of some injuries, like traumatic brain injury and internal bleeding, may not develop for days or longer after your Henderson car accident. However, as these conditions worsen, they can turn into life-threatening emergencies or lead to permanent injuries if left untreated.
How Not Seeking Prompt Medical Care Can Affect Your Claim for Compensation
The insurance company for the negligent driver could be looking for ways to reduce or deny your claim. This is a common insurance company tactic in car accident cases. When you do not see a doctor soon after your wreck, you give the insurance adjuster arguments that he can raise to dispute your claim. Common disputes include:
- Your injuries were caused by another incident other than your auto crash.
- Your injuries are not that serious. You would have seen a doctor sooner if they were as serious as you now claim.
Disputes like these may weaken your claim for compensation for your injuries—the opposite of what you want to do. Fortunately, an experienced car accident attorney can help you refute these arguments if they are issues in your case.
If You've Been Involved In A Car Wreck Contact Us for Help
If you need to file a claim for compensation following an auto accident in Henderson, our skilled car accident attorneys are here to help. Our office is conveniently located in Henderson. To get your questions answered and discuss your next steps, contact us online or call us directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule your free consultation.
What types of compensation could I be entitled to if I suffered injuries in a Henderson car accident?
If you or a family member suffers injuries in a Henderson car accident, you may quickly realize that you need to file a claim for compensation with the negligent driver’s insurance company. When you take this important step, it is important to understand the basics of what you need to do to prove your case, how the settlement process works, and the types of compensation that you can receive. Here, we explain the types of compensation awarded in auto collision cases.
Types of Compensation Awarded in Henderson Auto Crash Claims
In Nevada, you are entitled to be fully compensated for your injuries by the negligent driver who caused your collision. You can receive these types of damages:
Property Damages Following a Car Wreck
You are entitled to be reimbursed for the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle, car rental fees while your vehicle was repaired, and your towing expenses.
Medical Expenses for Your Car Crash
Ambulance fees, doctor bills, surgery, hospitalization, physical therapy, and medications are common expenses that you are entitled to be reimbursed for. If you need assistive aids, like crutches or a wheelchair, or in-home services, you may be reimbursed for these expenses as well.
Lost Wages After a Car Accident
When you must take time off work while you recover, you are entitled to your lost wages, lost sick and vacation time, bonuses, commissions, and other perks of your job. You may also request lost earning capacity damages if you become permanently disabled or must take a salary cut and a career change due to your injuries.
Pain and Suffering Resulting From an Auto Accident
Pain and suffering damages compensate you for the pain you suffered due to the accident and your injuries. Depending on the severity of your injuries and how they affect your day-to-day activities and ability to work, this portion of your settlement could be substantial.
If you lost a loved one in a car accident, you may be entitled to compensation in a wrongful death action. Types of compensation can include reasonable funeral expenses, medical bills incurred between the accident and death, and the loss of support, advice, and companionship of your family member.
Punitive Damages May Be Included In Your Car Accident Claim
If the negligent driver’s actions were especially egregious, you may be awarded punitive damages to punish him. In Nevada, punitive damages are capped at triple the compensatory damages or a maximum of $300,000.
You need the assistance of an experienced car accident attorney to value your claim and negotiate a settlement so that you receive what you deserve. At Jones Wilson Injury Lawyers, we have years of experience fighting for the rights of Henderson victims of auto crashes. To learn how we can help you, contact us online or call our Henderson office at 702.405.6000 today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.
What are statements that I should not make to an insurance adjuster following an auto accident in Henderson?
If you were injured in a car accident in Henderson caused by another driver, you will most likely have to talk to two insurance companies—the negligent driver’s and your own. This may happen even before you leave Henderson Hospital. When you are speaking to an insurance adjuster, you do not want to make the mistake that some victims make and say things that could hurt your claim for compensation.
What Should You Avoid Saying When Talking to an Insurance Adjuster?
You need to be very careful about what you say when speaking to an insurance adjuster because you may not realize that something you have said could be misinterpreted or used by the insurance company as a reason to deny or reduce your claim. Here is what you should do:
- Don’t give opinions. You want to avoid giving opinions on anything that you do not know. This could lead to you giving an inaccurate answer based on what you think, but that may not be true. Stick to what you know, such as where the crash occurred, when it happened, and who the parties involved in it were.
- Don’t apologize. If you are like many people, you may apologize for things when you did nothing wrong. You do not want to make “I’m sorry” or other similar statements when talking to an insurance adjuster because they can be misinterpreted as an admission of fault.
- Don’t say you were not hurt. Avoid making statements indicating that you were not hurt in the collision or that your injuries are not that serious. The reality is that the symptoms of back, neck, and spinal injuries, traumatic brain injury, and many other injuries may not be apparent until days or weeks after the accident.
- Don’t agree to a recorded statement. A recorded statement is a tape-recorded question-and-answer session with the insurance adjuster. You are not required to give a recorded statement, and you could inadvertently say something that can be interpreted to mean something that hurts your case.
- Don’t agree to a settlement. You never want to accept a settlement offer from the insurance company without first obtaining the advice of an experienced car accident attorney to be certain that you are receiving what you deserve. Many initial offers are for less than what the claim is worth.
- Don’t admit to not having an attorney. You do not want to admit to the insurance adjuster that you do not have a lawyer. This may lead him to try to take advantage of you and offer you less than you are entitled to in a settlement.
Your best strategy is to leave talking to the insurance adjuster to an experienced car accident attorney. If you are filing a claim for compensation following a car accident in Henderson, NV, our experienced car accident attorneys are here to help. Please feel free to contact us online or call us directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule your free consultation.
I was injured in a car accident. Should I sign a medical authorization release for the at-fault driver’s insurance company?
When a negligent driver causes you or a family member to suffer injuries on your way to Adventuredome, the Ethel M Chocolate Factory, or anywhere else in Henderson, you need to hold him accountable for compensating you for your injuries. You may be surprised at how complicated the process can be for filing your claim with his insurance company. You will need to make many decisions as you negotiate your settlement, and even simple ones—such as whether to sign a medical release—can be more important than you realize.
Why Not to Agree to Sign a Medical Authorization for the Negligent Driver’s Insurance Company After a Henderson Car Accident
Soon after your auto wreck in Henderson, you will most likely receive a call from the insurance adjuster for the negligent driver. This could even occur while you are still at Henderson Hospital. One innocent-sounding request will be to sign an authorization for release of your medical records. However, here is why you do not want to agree to do this:
- The form is a blanket authorization for release of all of your medical records, not just the ones involving your accident.
- The insurance adjuster wants all of your medical records to try to find information he can use to deny or reduce your claim, such as evidence of pre-existing injuries or inconsistent statements you made to your doctor.
- If you sign the authorization, you are allowing the insurance adjuster to obtain potentially private and sensitive information about your medical history that is irrelevant to your claim for compensation and that invades your privacy.
How Should You Handle a Request for Your Medical Records Following A Henderson Car Wreck?
The insurance adjuster for the negligent driver has a duty to the insurance company to investigate your claim and your injuries, so he will need your medical records pertaining to the injuries caused in the accident. However, you do not need to sign the insurance company’s medical authorization to provide this information. Your best strategy is to retain an experienced car accident attorney who can obtain the medical records that the insurance company truly needs and provide them on your behalf. He can also take over the communications with the insurance adjuster and negotiate your settlement so that you receive what you need and deserve.
Do you or a loved one need to file a claim for compensation following a car accident in Henderson or nearby Las Vegas? Our experienced car accident attorneys are here to help. Contact us online or call us directly at 702.405.6000 today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation to start learning about your legal options.
Can the insurance company require me to give a recorded statement after a Henderson NV car crash?
If a negligent driver caused your car accident in Henderson, you could suffer serious injuries that require expensive medical treatments and be off work for months or longer. Fortunately, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries from the negligent driver. However, the process of filing your claim may be much more complicated than you realize, and you will have many decisions to make before reaching a settlement with the insurance company. One important decision is whether to agree to give a recorded statement.
Do Not Agree to Give a Recorded Statement to the Insurance Company
Once the negligent driver notifies his insurance company about the car accident, the insurance adjuster will begin an investigation. One of the first requests he may make of you is to give a recorded statement. This is a question and answer session between you and the adjuster that is tape recorded and is transcribed into a written document. Even when you were not at all to blame and have nothing to hide, you should not agree to give a recorded statement. Here are some reasons to avoid it:
- It is not required. There is no requirement that you give a recorded statement when you make a claim following a Henderson auto crash in order to receive a settlement. In addition, giving one will not convince the insurance company to settle your claim more quickly or fairly. The adjuster is taking your statement to look for ways to deny or reduce your claim.
- Inconsistent statements. The adjuster will compare the answers you give in a recorded statement to statements you give to the police, your doctors, and others throughout the settlement process. If you make any inconsistent statements, the insurance company could try to use these inconsistencies to argue that you are not a credible witness.
- Inadvertent errors. Like attorneys, insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions about car accidents in ways to hopefully gain helpful information from the person being questioned. You could inadvertently give an incorrect answer or an answer you did not mean in response to a confusing question that could later be used against you in court or in settlement negotiations.
Do not make the mistake of other Henderson car accident victims and agree to give a recorded statement. Your best strategy is to politely refuse this request and then immediately contact an experienced car accident attorney who can take over the communications with the insurance adjuster and negotiate your settlement for you. To learn more about your legal options for compensation for your injuries, contact us online or call our Henderson office directly at 702.405.6000 today to schedule your free consultation.
I Had Back Pain Prior To My Personal Injury Accident. Can I Still File A Claim?
Many people live with some measure of back pain on a daily basis. We get up in the morning and feel the need to stretch or bend in an effort to “get the kinks” out of our backs. Some, have experienced spinal injuries to their bodies. Others simply experience degenerative conditions that impact them physically. It is important to understand how degenerative conditions are impacted when a new trauma is inflicted, like a car accident or even a slip and fall.
Most victims of motor vehicle collisions are not sure whether they have a claim as they have pain afterward, but acknowledge that they had pain prior to it as well. Or they have been told that they have “degenerative” changes, and so they are not sure whether the pain is a result from the collision, or rather from this “degenerative” condition.
It is important to understand the dynamics of back pain following a collision as many fail to get the medical attention they need due to a lack of information. Recognizing that a history of degenerative back injuries can be seriously amplified following a car wreck is a critical matter to understand. Often our clients find their pain is more intense following a collision. It's natural to wonder whether this pain is simply a degenerative condition once again rearing it's ugly head or if it was actually a result of the traumatic personal injury incident. Victims need to know that there are pain generating structures in their spinal column and surrounding musculature, and one of the most commonly injured structures after a car collision is the intervertebral disc. How degenerative backs impact that intervertebral disc is critical into truly understanding back pain.
Can A Tramautic Accident Cause Even More Damage To Your Back And Spine?
In a 2007 study By M. A. Edgar M.D., found in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Dr. Edgar studied the anatomical foundation of the lumbar spine, nerves and degenerative changes. He found that sensory nerve endings in degenerative lumbar discs run deep, but are often insensitive with respect to causing daily pain. What they have is deep running nerve structures that surround and supply each intervertebral disc of the back. The problem becomes that when a traumatic event is introduced to these deep running, degenerative, nerve endings. While they are often insensitive due to daily routines and living, when they are impacted by a trauma, Dr. Edgar found that they experience a ‘visceral pain’ reaction.
This reaction gets created and transmitted throughout the lumbar region, even though it may only be coming from one impacted intervertebral disc. Dr. Edgar noted that, “when a patient gets injured as a result of a traumatic event, not only can the disc produce pain at the point of the injury, but the deep running nerve endings will also effect the extremities, and even an entire region of the body.” Dr. Edgar’s findings demonstrate that degenerative nerves can actually increase the pain reaction that a damaged intervertebral disc experiences from a traumatic event. So while a car collision may impact a single disc in the spine, the increased visceral pain reaction from the degenerative nerves, can actually manifest itself in other areas of the body that the victim does not associate with the collision itself.
Understanding that a degenerative change in the back can actually make you more susceptible to pain is important in treating that pain following a motor vehicle collision. Experiencing a rear end collision that impacts the lumbar back and yet results in leg or hip pain, is actually not uncommon. Yet many victims are left wondering why is that pain found in that area. As we study and better understand the nerve supply structures of the lumbar spine, doctors can better address that pain, and treat victims. Having degenerative lumbar conditions does not mean that you cannot be seriously injured in a motor vehicle collision, or recover for your damages. It does not mean that you have to live with pain because you have “degenerative conditions”. No, the issue can be that you are actually more susceptible to physical pain, because of those conditions. You always want to treat with a doctor who understands the most current and scientific explanations of spine anatomy and pain patterns. When you're treated by such a doctor, you will not experience someone who merely scratches their head trying to figure out why you are experiencing the pain you have.
Do You Have Existing Back Pain That Has Worsened Following An Accident?
If you have an pre-existing degenerative back condition and have been involved in an accident you need to speak with an experienced spine injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call us directly at 866.299.0558 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation.
How is an Uber accident different from other car accidents?
If you are visiting Las Vegas on vacation or for business, you might find using Uber ride services more convenient than renting a vehicle. Even if you live here, you may use Uber from time to time. While using an Uber driver is usually safe, in some instances the driver could be negligent and cause a car accident. If you are injured in one of these accidents, either as a passenger in a Uber or in a vehicle hit by an Uber driver, it is important to understand how these crashes differ from traditional auto accidents.
Differences Between Uber and Auto Accidents That Could Affect Your Claim
In certain ways, an Uber auto accident is similar to other vehicle crashes. You must prove that the Uber driver or another driver was negligent in order to be entitled to compensation for your injuries. However, there are some important differences in these claims:
- More complicated issues. You could face more complicated issues in an Uber accident, especially concerning insurance. It may be difficult to determine whether the Uber driver’s insurance policy or the Uber company insurance policy would cover your injuries—or both. The driver should have purchased a policy that covers him as a commercial driver, but may only have a personal insurance policy that would not cover your accident. In addition, Uber does not consider its drivers employees, and only considers itself liable in certain situations. There could be disputes regarding their responsibility, for example, if the driver was waiting to pick up a passenger or not logged into the Uber system.
- More liable parties. In a passenger vehicle accident, there is usually only one party who would be liable for compensating you—the negligent driver. In an Uber accident, the Uber driver and Uber could face liability. In addition, if both drivers involved in the accident were negligent, you may need to file claims with three insurance companies.
- More insurance. In a passenger vehicle accident, there could be much less insurance coverage to pay you what you are owed. In Nevada, the minimum liability insurance required is $15,000/$30,000 in liability coverage to compensate victims for injuries of a wreck. If you were injured in an Uber accident, you could hopefully pursue a claim under the Uber driver’s insurance policy and Uber's, which has $1,000,000 in liability coverage.
The experienced car accident attorneys at Jones Wilson Injury Lawyers handle accidents caused by Uber and taxi cab drivers as well as those caused by other negligent drivers. In addition, we gladly represent victims who live out of state or outside of the Las Vegas area as well as right here in Henderson. If you or a family member was injured in an Uber car accident contact us online or call our office directly at 702.405.6000 to schedule your free consultation.