Collisions between motor vehicles are the single most common source of personal injuries in Alabama, and unfortunately one of the most dangerous as well. Even at low speeds, auto accidents have the potential to cause whiplash, lacerations, fractures, and other injuries that can be expensive and time-consuming to treat. More severe incidents may cause bone fractures, traumatic brain and spine damage, and crushing injuries that may have permanent or even fatal consequences.
If you got hurt in a car wreck because another driver acted negligently, retaining a skilled Athens car accident lawyer could make a world of difference in how well your case goes and what kind of compensation you can ultimately recover. Your personal injury attorney could work tirelessly and tenaciously on your behalf to prove defendant fault, disprove allegations of comparative negligence leveled against you, and demand fair restitution for every one of your injuries and losses.
Proving Liability for a Car Wreck
The first thing to know about car accident lawsuits in Alabama is that—like most other personal injury claims—these cases revolve around a legal concept called “negligence.” Put simply, negligence entails a person who has a responsibility to act safely and carefully around others violating that “duty of care” by doing something reckless, careless, or illegal, and causing an accident resulting in compensable losses as a direct consequence of their misconduct.
In order to hold someone else accountable for injuries and other damages sustained in a car crash, an injured person—or “plaintiff”—generally must prove that the other party—the “defendant”—was negligent in some way. Depending on the circumstances, this could mean showing that they violated a traffic law, drove while unreasonably fatigued, let themselves get distracted while in motion, or even intentionally tried to cause harm in a fit of road rage.
Regardless of what specifically led to a particular incident, an Athens car accident attorney could help build a comprehensive case against an allegedly negligent defendant. Beyond just advocating on a plaintiff’s behalf in court or during private settlement negotiations, seasoned legal counsel could also help with the evidence collection process by tracking down camera footage, talking to eyewitnesses, and potentially working with accident reconstruction experts to prove what really caused the accident in question to occur.
What Could Potentially Hinder Recovery?
Alabama has one of the harshest shared negligence laws in the country. Known as the pure contributory negligence rule, victims found even one percent at-fault for an accident could be barred from seeking any type of recovery. This gives the defense ample room to counter any claims made by the plaintiff. As a result, victims seeking compensation must make sure to work with a skilled attorney who is capable of proving a claim beyond a reasonable doubt.
On top of that, a “statute of limitations” restricts the amount of time prospective civil plaintiffs have to start the civil litigation process after they learn they were hurt by another person’s negligence. If a car wreck victim in Athens or the lawyer representing them fails to file suit within two years of discovering their injuries, Alabama law allows courts to consider their case “time-barred” and immediately throw it out.
An Athens Car Accident Attorney Could Help Build a Strong Claim
Dealing with the physical, financial, and emotional effects of a severe roadway accident can be hard enough on its own, so adding civil litigation to your plate may understandably seem excessive. Fortunately, by working with an experienced legal professional who has helped people like yours through similar situations before, you could greatly improve your odds of recovering compensation.
Finding success with a car accident claim is often the matter of finding the right Athens car accident lawyer to help you. Call today to learn how a qualified attorney could assist you.