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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

If you were involved in a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or any other type of accident while driving or riding a vehicle that caused you to become hurt, you might be waiting to hear back from an insurance company about your personal injury compensation. Or maybe you already received a compensation settlement from the insurance company, faster than originally expected. Whatever the case may be, you should still consider retaining representation from a personal injury attorney for the following reasons.

3 Ways a Lawyer Can Help You Get a Better Settlement

When the insurance company makes its decision, your options are not limited—you still can hire an attorney to help you obtain a higher settlement, among other things. Just be sure you do not agree to that original settlement. Do not sign anything if you suspect you are getting taken advantage of. In cases like that, you will want to reach out to a lawyer. Here are a few reasons why hiring an attorney after receiving a mediocre settlement offer is possible, reasonable, and greatly beneficial:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Whether you have been in a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or any other type of accident while driving or you are simply just curious, it can be interesting to know how common traffic accidents are in Tennessee, especially over the last year relative to other years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. By seeing and processing this data, you can become more aware of how serious of a problem vehicle crashes are in Tennessee and hopefully, figure out ways to avoid them in the future so you are not faced with any severe personal injuries

6 Facts About Tennessee Vehicle Accidents

  1. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, there was nearly a 5 percent increase in traffic accident fatalities in 2020 relative to 2019.

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Campbell County personal injury attorney

No one ever wants to think about this happening: Your loved one gets involved in a car accident while driving. It was not your family member’s fault, and the resulting personal injury from the collision caused him or her to become incapacitated, at least temporarily. You may believe that your relative should seek compensation in a court of law, but how? A coma or other mental incapacity could prevent a personal injury case from being initiated. Worse yet, your loved one might eventually die, making you wonder if a wrongful death lawsuit would be necessary on the family’s behalf. Not many people anticipate such dreadful thoughts and scenarios nor do they prepare for them. However, there are some things you can do if faced with such a situation that can help you protect your relative’s rights and obtain a positive outcome.

What to Do Before Pursuing Compensation through a Personal Injury Claim

So you know that your family member’s incapacitating injuries are the other driver’s fault, and you and your attorney agree that a personal injury lawsuit would be very appropriate in such a situation. Do you even have the right to file on your loved one’s behalf? That depends. Before attempting to litigate anything, you should look at your family member’s will, if he or she has one. Here are some things to consider first:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Chain-reaction accidents are usually caused by rear-end collisions. Tennessee has a history of some very serious chain-reaction crashes or pileups of multiple cars, often on the highway, that can lead to fires and even deaths. In fact, 15 people died in such a pileup on a Tennessee highway back in 1990. Last August, more than 30 cars were involved in three different chain-reaction accidents in one day, and just a few days ago, a rear-end collision in Tennessee led to a destructive fire that not only damaged cars and hurt drivers but also destroyed a building in the fire. As suggested, these multi-vehicle accidents are dangerous and consequential. Winter weather conditions, including fog, could lead to these types of crashes occurring even more often. That is why it is imperative to be aware as a motorist and the steps to take if you are involved in this type of crash.

4 Tips to Help You After a Chain-Reaction Accident in Tennessee

If you are involved in a chain-reaction accident, especially if you are injured or your car is damaged, consider the following tips to help you get through this traumatic experience:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Despite the pandemic putting many of the usual activities of life on pause for the greater part of 2020, the Tennessee legislature did manage to pass a few laws that take effect in January of 2021. One such law took root in House Bill 1593 and Senate Bill 2207. These bills were primarily meant to tax peer-to-peer car-sharing programs, in which a car owner lends his or her car to someone else who will borrow it to drive using the program for a fee. It is the gig economy’s version of a car rental company in much the same way Airbnb is the hotel or timeshare of its age in this “sharing economy.” But what happens if you suffer a personal injury from a car accident involving a driver who is borrowing an automobile through a peer-to-peer car-sharing program? The 2021 peer-to-peer car-sharing program law has a lot to say about the insurance process, but what if the auto insurance policy does not fairly compensate you for your injuries or damages?   

What to Do After a Peer-to-Peer Car Sharing Program Accident in Tennessee

Essentially, as a personal injury victim, you will want to handle a peer-to-peer ride-sharing accident in much the same way you would any other car accident:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

DUI charges during the winter holidays can be a frequent occurrence and accidents caused by drunk driving are also very common, but there are plenty of other reasons that drivers in Tennessee might be involved in car accidents this winter holiday season. Here is an overview of the data concerning the most common reasons for car accidents in Campbell County. Keep them in mind should you ever be involved in a car accident with personal injuries. Doing so will help you better understand whether you have a strong case, what type of compensation you might be entitled to, and how an experienced attorney can help you with your claim.

Frequent Reasons for Car Accidents in Tennessee

While driving drunk, texting while driving, driving recklessly or aggressively, and countless other reasons for car accidents are common across the nation, they are not nearly as common as the following categories are in Campbell County, TN, at least over the last decade. Each of these reasons for car accidents has resulted in hundreds of times more accidents than most other reasons:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney

Whether you have been in a vehicle collision, truck accident, motorcycle crash, or any other type of accident and sustained a personal injury as a result, you are probably going to want to seek compensation for your injuries and other damages in court, especially if the costs of medical bills and your own trauma are preventing you from moving forward with your life. However, before you proceed with hiring a personal injury attorney, you should know what to expect from them to ensure they are working in your best interests.   

What to Expect from Your Personal Injury Attorney 

From analyzing your case to determine compensation to filing paperwork and arguing your case in order to expedite its settlement, your personal injury attorney can do many important things for you to make sure everything goes smoothly and you obtain the best possible outcome. Here are a few examples of how your personal injury lawyer can assist you:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

As the technology for self-driving vehicles continues to improve and such vehicles become more common on the road, especially for commercial purposes, the likelihood of being involved in an accident with a self-driving vehicle increases. While the general argument for using self-driving vehicles is safety since the majority of vehicle accidents are caused by human error, there have been instances over the last five years when pedestrians and other drivers were either injured or killed by self-driving automobiles. Self-driving accidents might include car collisions and truck crashes, and more. Fortunately, Tennessee law has defined self-driving vehicles in order to assist with personal injury cases that result from such accidents.

Self-Driving Vehicles = Automated Driving System (ADS) in Tennessee

In Tennessee, self-driving vehicles are defined under the umbrella of “automated driving systems.” Automated driving systems (ADS) are vehicles with advanced technology installed that have the capability to take full or partial control of a vehicle without intervention or supervision from a human operator. In this sense, the driving of ADS vehicles can be completely automated (self-driving). 

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Campbell County personal injury attorney motorcycle accident

In most personal injury cases, including car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and truck accidents, testimony might be provided by experts for both sides of the case. Professional experts are critical to just about any case, but they are especially important in accident-related cases because they can help provide context and clarify the circumstances of the crash. Combined with the guidance of a qualified personal injury attorney, they may increase your chances of receiving compensation for your pain and suffering as a victim of a collision. Below are a few examples of the types of experts you might encounter in such cases. 

Subject Matter Experts 

In addition to the police, the victim(s), specialists, and other professional experts can be called into personal injury accident cases to bolster an argument. These subject matter experts may include:

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Campbell County criminal defense attorney car accident

Tennessee is a “fault state,” so whichever driver in a car accident is found to be at fault will be responsible for paying any damages. If you get into a car accident, it is up to you to prove that the other driver is at fault if he or she is to properly compensate you for any property damage or personal injury. If there are no medical issues that should be addressed immediately, you should try to secure testimony from any witnesses in the area. This is not as simple as approaching witnesses and asking them if they will offer their statement in your defense. There are several strategies you can employ to improve your chances of stating your case to the police or in court. Capitalize on any testimonies that you gather by working with an experienced personal injury attorney in your area. By staying proactive in proving that you are not at fault for a car accident, you have a better chance of being compensated by the other driver’s insurance provider.

How to Approach a Car Accident Witness

The atmosphere at the scene of a car accident can be chaotic and disorienting. To help ensure detailed testimony from witnesses, ask for their contact information so that you and your attorney can communicate with them in the near future when they may be calmer and more focused. Although it can work in your favor to reach out to witnesses after the accident, remember not to wait too long. You want to get their perspectives while they still clearly remember the accident’s details. 

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

If you are in a car accident, you may suffer serious to life-threatening injuries depending on several factors, such as speed or the size of the vehicles involved. Although you might feel fortunate that you are not in pain after an accident, some common crash injuries have delayed symptoms. That is why it is important for you and your passengers to seek medical attention, without exception. The medical aftermath of a car accident should be your top priority, so alleviate other stresses and work with a personal injury attorney you can trust to learn your options for seeking compensation. 

Delayed Injuries and Symptoms

Car accidents frequently cause non-superficial injuries that include internal bleeding, blood clots, concussions, or spinal injury. These types of injuries do not typically exhibit symptoms immediately. Instead, symptoms arise after a few days. A doctor can usually detect these injuries before they become symptomatic, but common symptoms for delayed injuries may include the following:

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Although most car accidents are a result of negligent driving, some occur because of defective equipment parts. There are many situations in which a manufacturer or repair shop might be to blame. A particularly clear case is when your airbags do not deploy as they should. Car manufacturers are required to ship new vehicles with functioning airbag systems. They can be held liable if your car is found to have faulty parts or improper installation. If you or your loved one suffered injuries in a car accident, it is imperative that you speak with a qualified personal injury attorney right away. Tennessee is an at-fault state, so a skilled attorney can investigate whether or not a car manufacturer or other parties are liable for your crash. 

Tennessee Product Liability Laws

Before explaining Tennessee’s product liability laws, you should understand the car dealership and private sellers’ responsibilities. Most states have lemon laws to protect consumers from defective vehicles. Tennessee’s lemon law only protects purchases from a manufacturer. The coverage does not apply to consumers who purchase used cars from dealerships or private sellers. Technically, unless the terms of a used car sale include a warranty or similar guarantee, the purchaser is responsible for the vehicle once it is in his or her possession. When buying a used vehicle, make sure that it does not need airbag replacements. 

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Campbell County auto accident injury attorney

Being a defensive driver is one of the best ways to stay safe on the road, so it is important to stay up to date on how a lot of people are driving in your state so that you do not get careless. The coronavirus pandemic has changed how and how often people drive, and it will not hurt to be aware of how these changes render the driving of others and potentially even your own unpredictable. If you ever get into a car accident, you will be able to better fight for the damages you are owed if you work with an experienced car accident attorney in your area. 

COVID-19 and Car Accident Rates in Tennessee

Believe it or not, even though COVID-19 has resulted in fewer concurrent drivers on the road at any given time, car accident rates are rising. Compared to 2019, car accident fatalities rose 18.5 percent this March when compared with the previous year. Officials theorize that this could be due to a few reasons. First, with fewer cars on the road, more drivers could be encouraged to speed. Second, this increase in speed combined with the lack of a seatbelt could easily explain the rise in fatalities. Also, many drivers have not been behind the wheel in days, weeks, or maybe even months. That unfamiliarity could pose significant threats to safety.

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Campbell County personal injury attorney car accident

Before you lend your vehicle to someone, carefully consider what the consequences could be if he or she gets into an accident. There are various outcomes if the person borrowing a car has an accident, including minor to serious injuries. Therefore, it is important for any vehicle owner to understand his or her rights and responsibilities. Regardless of whether or not you know what your auto insurance policy covers or the nature of the accident, it is important to work with an accomplished car accident attorney to help secure the best outcome.

Tennessee Liability Laws

In general, the owner of the vehicle will be held financially responsible for any damages in a collision. Whether or not you are a passenger at the time, your insurance policy will most likely be the one to cover damages. This rule is known as ownership liability. In some situations, if your car is totaled by another driver, your insurance policy will pay up to its limits and then the driver’s policy will carry the rest of the burden. However, this all depends on what kind of insurance policy you have. Some do not allow for this sharing of financial responsibilities, and you may end up owing more than your insurance covers.

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Campbell County auto accident attorney

If you get into an accident or are pulled over for any other reason in Tennessee, you will always need to provide proof of insurance. However, unless you buy your vehicle from a private seller and fail to get insured beforehand, you should always have some form of insurance on your vehicle. We will explain why below, but remember that if you face charges for any traffic violation or need to secure fair compensation after a car accident, seeking the help of a seasoned personal injury attorney can go a long way in achieving a favorable outcome. 

Temporary Insurance in Tennessee

Tennessee law requires that all drivers have auto insurance that covers at least the following: 

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Campbell County auto accident injury attorney

Drivers can do a lot to protect themselves and others on the road, and this includes making sure their vehicles are well-maintained. Too often, drivers only care about getting their car repaired when a warning light appears on the dash, but other symptoms also warrant a visit to a mechanic as soon as possible. If a driver has failed to properly maintain their vehicle, this can render it unsafe to drive, leading to a dangerous car accident. If you are ever involved in a collision with another vehicle, consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to protect your rights and determine how you can recover compensation for your damages.

The Importance of Vehicle Maintenance

A car's suspension keeps it balanced and upright. The struts, steering rack, anti-roll bars, control arms, and drive shafts work across the width of the car to provide the level of control that drivers need when they are behind the wheel. If any part of the suspension has a critical failure, a car could lose balance, and the driver may lose steering control. Thankfully, there are some clear symptoms that alert drivers to a possible problem with their car’s suspension.

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Campbell County traffic violations defense attorney

The staggering amount of car accidents caused by distracted driving in Tennessee pushed lawmakers to institute a new law on July 1, 2019 that bans any kind of cell phone use while driving. Understanding this new law can help you avoid a costly ticket in addition to a serious crash. In some cases, the penalties for using your phone behind the wheel can carry costly fines and the loss of driving privileges. Regardless of the charges, it is critical that you present an aggressive defense to the court with the guidance of an experienced traffic violations attorney.

Distracted Driving Statistics in Tennessee

For the three years leading up to 2019, distracted driving by Tennessee motorists caused more than 24,000 crashes annually. Tennessee also had the highest fatality rate of any state for distracted driving in that time period. The national average was 1.49 fatalities per 10 billion vehicle miles, while Tennessee’s rate reached 7.2 deaths for that same mileage.

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Campbell County auto accident attorney

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that in five years, 40 percent of car accidents in the United States will be caused by elderly motorists. However, it is a common misconception that older drivers cause more collisions than younger drivers. This is often based on the belief that older motorists have a decreased ability to operate their vehicles. While this may be true in some cases, the majority of accidents that involve an elderly driver are not the elder’s fault, and these drivers generally sustain more severe injuries than younger drivers.

Should Elderly Motorists Lose Their Driving Privileges?

Tennessee does not have a law saying that at a certain age, elderly drivers should cease operation of their vehicles. The state does require that all drivers over the age of 70 must renew their licenses every three years. It is up to the driver to decide when to stop driving. However, it is important to note that if a collision occurs as a result of the elderly driver’s negligent actions, the Tennessee Commissioner could restrict that driver from ever driving again.

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Campbell County car accident attorney speeding

Drivers who operate their vehicles at a high rate of speed have less control of their automobiles than those who obey the traffic rules. In Tennessee, speeding can come with heavy fines depending on how far over the posted speed limit a driver is traveling. Unfortunately, a ticket will be the least of a driver’s worries if the violation causes a collision with another car, a motorcycle, or a pedestrian. In those cases, the offending driver will be responsible for the injuries and damage that was done as a result of the incident.

What Are the Tennessee Speeding Laws?

The state of Tennessee requires all drivers to maintain a safe speed on the road. This speed could vary depending on the conditions of the day and also in what county a motorist is traveling. Tennessee does have absolute speed limits for certain types of roadways:

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Campbell County drunk driving defense attorney

The state of Tennessee punishes those who drive under the influence (DUI) harshly, even for first-time offenders. Penalties increase for subsequent DUI convictions against a driver, but they become even more severe if a person is injured or killed because of a DUI collision. Additionally, Tennessee punishes those who flee the scene after causing a drunk driving car crash, regardless of whether it caused injury or death to a victim.

Is Fleeing the Scene Considered a Felony?

Tennessee law states that any person who flees the scene of a collision -- whether or not alcohol or drugs are involved -- will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. This includes accidents which take place on or at:

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