Jersey City Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents are the leading cause of unintentional injuries and related deaths in New Jersey. Every year, hundreds of thousands of traffic accidents are reported to the state’s Department of Transportation. Almost all of these auto accidents are entirely preventable. They happen when drivers and other parties are careless or reckless.
At Brady Reilly & Cardoso, LLC, we are passionate about holding wrongdoers accountable for their misconduct when it causes harm to others. Our Jersey City car accident lawyers can help you and your family connect to top doctors, determine the cause of your car accident and pursue the financial compensation that you deserve from one or more insurance companies. We offer free initial consultations after an auto accident in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Jersey City Car Accident Resources
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How an Attorney Can Help
Common Causes for Car Accidents
What to Do After a Jersey City Car Accident
How An Attorney Will Handle Your Case
How Negligence Plays a Factor In Liability
How Much is Your Case Worth?
Potential Damages in a Car Accident Case
What is the Car Accident Settlement Process?
Is New Jersey a Fault or No-Fault State?
Common Car Accident Injuries
How Much Does a Car Accident Attorney Cost?
Speak to a Lawyer Today
How a Jersey City Car Accident Attorney Can Help
An auto insurance company knows that you will feel stressed, overwhelmed and confused after a collision. The insurance companies will use this against you to try to take advantage of you and convince you to settle for an amount that does not adequately cover your injuries and losses. With a Jersey City personal injury lawyer by your side, however, you can strengthen your insurance negotiations and fight back against tactics meant to hurt your recovery. The simple fact of hiring a Jersey City accident attorney sends a message to insurance companies that you are taking this seriously. They are much less likely to try to offer you something inadequate if you have a car accident lawyer speak with them on your behalf.
A qualified Jersey City car accident attorney will also help you with the following:
- Collect evidence. Collecting evidence is a crucial part of your car accident case. Important evidence often includes medical records, witness information, and video footage if it exists. Having a Jersey City car accident attorney seek video footage immediately is incredibly important, as most video recordings are deleted after a certain amount of time – sometimes 30 days. If there is footage from a restaurant or a homeowner’s nearby doorbell camera, they won’t know to keep the footage unless someone tells them to. Hiring an attorney right away will ensure that all important evidence is preserved to help you with your case. Your auto accident lawyer will also speak with witnesses and get their version of events, which is often helpful for your case. Once your car accident lawyer talks to all of the witnesses, they can decide whose testimony will be useful and who they think they should call to the stand at trial if a settlement isn’t agreed upon.
- Help you get medical care. Most car accident attorneys are very familiar with the type of injuries a person suffers after a car accident and what treatment they need. They can usually help connect you with medical providers and will then be able to stay in touch with your doctors to obtain information that will be helpful for your case.
- Litigate if necessary. While most personal injury cases are settled before they ever get to trial, some cases do end up at trial if the insurance companies and the defendant aren’t willing to offer you an adequate amount of money. You want to make sure you hire a firm that has accident lawyers who aren’t afraid to litigate and who have the experience needed. This can be hard to come by since so many cases end up settling, but it’s essential. All of the Jersey City accident attorneys at Brady Reilly & Cardoso have experience negotiation and litigating. You never have to worry that we will push you to accept a settlement that is less than you deserve simply so we don’t have to take your case to trial.
In addition to taking over legal processes, a Jersey City car accident lawyer can investigate your traffic collision, determine fault and hire qualified experts to strengthen your case. For example, your Jersey City accident attorney might find it necessary to hire an accident reconstruction expert. This type of expert will go through the scene and see what caused the accident. If it’s favorable to you, your car accident lawyer will prepare them to testify on your behalf at trial if it comes to that.
You can trust your auto accident lawyer to handle your claim or injury lawsuit from start to finish while you concentrate on healing from your serious injuries. A Jersey City accident lawyer will reduce your stress, bear the brunt of the legal legwork on your behalf and fight for justice for you.
Common Causes of Car Accidents
There are many reasons why car accidents are so common. This can include manufacturer defects that cause the driver to lose control or for the car to not perform correctly. Other reasons for car collisions include:
- Speeding above the posted speed limit
- Speeding during unsafe weather conditions
- Distracted drivers
- Drunk drivers
- Drowsy drivers
- Reckless drivers
- Failing to follow the rules of traffic, including yielding to the right of way
- Driving the wrong way on a street
- Poor weather conditions
It’s important to correctly identify and understand the reason for your car crash in order to determine who or what can be held liable to compensate you for your injuries. If you are unsure of what your options are, a Jersey City car accident attorney can help you figure out car accident liability right away.
What to Do After a Car Accident in Jersey City
If you get into an accident in Jersey City, there are steps you can take immediately following the collision to start your claim and protect your legal rights. If you can, take the following actions before and immediately after you leave the scene of the crash:
- Pull over and check for injuries. Legally, you must stop your vehicle as close to the scene of the car crash as possible. Check to see if you or anyone else is injured. If so, call for an ambulance.
- Call 911. State law stipulates that all drivers must report automobile accidents that result in injuries, deaths or at least $500 in property damage. This applies to most collisions. Calling 911 also ensures that an officer will come out to the scene right away. They will take a police report, which will include any information they believe is relevant, such as how the scene of the accident looks, the condition of the motor vehicle, who is involved, and more.
- Exchange information. Exchange names, addresses, vehicle registration numbers and insurance information with the other driver. When talking to the other driver and the police, do not admit fault.
- Take photographs and collect evidence. If you have a camera or smartphone, take photographs of the scene of the crash and the motor vehicle before you leave. Collect other forms of evidence, as well, such as eyewitness information.
- Go to a hospital. Do not delay in receiving medical care. Go to the nearest hospital in Jersey City immediately and request copies of your medical records.
- File an insurance claim. As soon as you can, call your own car insurance company to report the crash. Before you settle anything with the insurance provider, however, contact an attorney.
- Consult with a lawyer right away. The statute of limitations, or limit to file car accident claims in New Jersey, is two years from the date of the crash in most cases. It is important to act quickly to get help and receive a free case evaluation from an attorney after a motor vehicle accident.
An insurance company – including your own provider – will want to minimize your payout to save itself money. After an initial consultation with a Jersey City accident attorney, however, you can gain a better understanding of the value of your case and recognize ways to protect your rights.
How A Jersey City Car Accident Attorney Handles Your Case
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you don’t need to deal with the consequences on your own. Our experienced car accident lawyers are here to guide you through every step of the process and fight for the compensation you deserve.
The first step is to investigate the accident and gather evidence. This includes talking to witnesses, reviewing police reports, and inspecting the damage to the vehicles involved. Once liability has been determined, your attorney will send a demand letter to the responsible party’s insurance company outlining your injuries and damages. If the insurance company denies your claim or makes an offer that is too low, your attorney will file a lawsuit on your behalf.
The next step is discovery, during which both sides will gather information from each other and any relevant third parties. This usually includes exchanging documents and interviewing witnesses. Once discovery is complete, both sides will attempt to reach a settlement through negotiation or mediation. If an agreement can’t be reached, the case will go to trial.
If you’ve been involved in a car accident, hiring a qualified Jersey City car accident attorney should be one of your top priorities. Your attorney will handle every aspect of your case so that you can focus on recovery.
Car Accident Lawsuits Are Frequently Based Upon Negligence
In the United States, car accident cases are usually based on negligence. To put it simply, this means that the person who caused the accident is responsible for any damages or injuries that resulted from it. In order to win your case and receive compensation, you will need to prove that the other driver was at fault.
Duty of Care. You must prove four elements to be successful in a negligence claim. First, you must show that the defendant owed you a duty of care. Generally speaking, all drivers owe other motorists a duty of care to drive in a reasonably safe manner.
Breach of Duty. Next, you must show that the defendant breached (or violated) their duty by failing to exercise “reasonable care” while driving. There are different ways to establish this. The most common way to show that is to present evidence that the other driver violated a traffic law. For example, if they were speeding or drove through a red light, this would be evidence of a violation of their duty.
Causation. The third element is causation. You must show that your injuries were caused by the accident. For example, if you were rear-ended another car and sustained whiplash, it would be fairly easy to establish causation.
Damages. The fourth and final element is damages. You must show that you suffered some type of harm as a result of the defendant’s negligence. This harm can be physical, psychological, or financial. For example, if you sustained broken bones in an accident and/or developed anxiety or depression, this is evidence of damages.
How Much Is Your Car Accident Case Worth?
In the aftermath of a car accident in Jersey City, you may be facing expensive vehicle damage, rental car and travel costs, medical bills, legal fees and more. It is normal to wonder how much your car accident case would be worth if you achieve a successful settlement or jury verdict. After all, obtaining fair compensation can allow your family to pay the bills and move forward without undue financial hardship. The answer to this question, however, varies significantly from case to case.
The value of a car accident claim in New Jersey will depend on issues such as the severity of the victim’s injuries and losses, whether the victim has a permanent disability, the victim’s age and income level, whether the case involves wrongful death, and the value of the damaged motor vehicle. Some car accident cases may be worth $10,000 or less, while others may have values that climb to six or seven figures.
Damages Available for Jersey City Car Accident Injuries
There are two main types of damages available after a car accident: economic and non-economic damages.
Economic damages are meant to reimburse the victim for any financial losses incurred as a result of the accident, such as medical expenses, including future medical bills, lost wages from time missed at work, and damage to personal property.
Non-economic damages are meant to compensate the victim for intangible losses that cannot be given a specific monetary value. These could include pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of consortium, or loss of enjoyment of life. In New Jersey, there is no cap on the amount of economic damages that can be awarded.
Punitive damages are awarded as a punishment to the defendant for particularly egregious behavior and to deter others from engaging in similar behavior in the future. For example, if the defendant was driving under the influence at the time of the accident, they may be subject to punitive damages. The state of New Jersey caps punitive damages at five times the amount of economic damages, or $350,000, whichever is greater.
What is the Car Accident Settlement Process?
The car accident settlement process can be complex and time-consuming—but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming or stressful. Our experienced personal injury lawyers are here to help guide you through every step of the settlement process so that you can get maximum compensation for your injuries and damages. We will take the following steps:
Investigate: The first step in any car accident settlement is to conduct a thorough investigation of the accident itself and the injuries that were sustained. This will involve collecting evidence such as photos of the scene, eyewitness statements, medical records, and more.
Consult: Once the investigation is complete, it’s time to consult with experts who can help build a strong case for compensation. This may include working with accident reconstructionists, medical professionals, and more.
Review: Another important step in the process is to review both your insurance policy and the other driver’s insurance policy. This will help determine what coverage is available and how much compensation you may be entitled to.
Demand letter: Once we have all the facts and evidence gathered, it’s time to send a demand letter to the insurance company. This letter will outline your injuries and damages and request a specific amount of money for your settlement. The insurance company will then respond with their own offer, which will usually be lower than your initial demand. It is then up to you and your attorney to negotiate a fair settlement amount with the insurance company.
If you are unable to reach a settlement agreement with the insurance company, your next course of action may be to file a personal injury lawsuit.
Is New Jersey a Fault or No-Fault State?
One of the main laws that you will have to navigate after a car accident in New Jersey is the no-fault law. Unlike the majority of states, New Jersey uses a no-fault auto insurance law. This can have a major impact on your auto accident case. If you purchased a basic, “limited right to sue” insurance policy, you must seek benefits from your own auto insurance provider, even if you did not cause the crash, unless your injuries meet the state’s serious injury threshold.
Common Car Accident Injuries
In New Jersey, you can only hold a careless or reckless driver accountable for your crash if you or a loved one suffered:
- A serious injury, such as a bone fracture
- Permanent disability or injury
- Brain injury
- Spinal injury
- Permanent and significant scarring or disfigurement
- Loss of limb
- Loss of an unborn child
In some cases, a car crash can result in fatal injuries. In such a case, a Jersey City wrongful death attorney will help your family fight for justice for your lost loved one.
Otherwise, you will file a first-party insurance claim for coverage under your own personal injury protection (PIP) insurance. This will pay for your medical bills without you having to prove another party is at fault for the crash. If you chose the “unlimited right to sue” insurance option, however, you can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver regardless of the extent of your injuries.
How Can I Afford a Jersey City Car Accident Attorney?
Have you been in a car accident that wasn’t your fault? If so, you may need to hire a car accident attorney to help you get the compensation you deserve. But how can you afford an attorney when you’re already dealing with expensive medical bills and lost wages? The good news is, most car accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis.
A contingency fee is when an attorney agrees to represent you in exchange for a percentage of the damages they recover for you. If the attorney is not successful in recovering any money for you, then they don’t get paid.
If you decide to hire an attorney on a contingency fee basis, you will sign a contract that outlines the attorney’s percentage of the damages recovered as well as other important details about the agreement. Once the case is settled or goes to trial, the attorney will take their percentage. You will then receive the remainder of the damages.
For example, let’s say your car accident case settles for $100,000 and your contract with your attorney stipulates that they will take 33% of any damages recovered. That means your attorney would take $33,000 as their fee and you would receive $67,000 as your share of the settlement.
Consult With a Jersey City Car Accident Lawyer
A car accident can cause serious injuries and expensive related bills. It is important to protect your rights from the beginning by contacting an experienced car and motorcycle accident lawyer in Jersey City. Brady Reilly & Cardoso, LLC cares about clients and can help you and your family work through a complicated case. Discuss how our legal support team can help you in more detail during a free consultation today. Call (201) 997-0030 to speak to our attorneys now.