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What Damages Can You Seek After an Oklahoma Auto Accident?

Posted on: May 5, 2020 by Tony Edwards

Insurance broker explaining claims for car accident.

A car accident can turn your life upside down. One minute, you are driving down the road to home, work or school, and the next minute, you may be left dealing with serious injuries. You could face expensive medical treatment, significant loss of income due to your inability to work and an overwhelming amount of pain and stress. However, if someone else caused the accident, you may be eligible to seek compensation for the harm that you have suffered.

At Edwards & Patterson Law, we will gather and study your medical records, consult with medical professionals and, above all, we will listen to you and learn how your accident in Oklahoma has affected your life. Our goal will be to recover full and fair compensation for you so that you can move on with your life after going through a traumatic event. Contact us today and learn more about how we can help you.

Types of Damages in a Personal Injury Claim

Our attorneys at Edwards & Patterson Law realize how a car accident can impact a person’s life in a variety of ways. When we take on your auto accident claim, we will seek damages that address the many ways that your life has been affected, including seeking compensation for:

  • Rescuers responding to rollover car.Past and future medical expenses – Medical treatment can often take a long time. It is important that accident victims include both present and future medical costs within their claim, including the costs of emergency treatment, surgery, hospitalization, medication, rehabilitation and more.
  • Lost income – Most accident victims cannot return to work immediately after a crash. Like medical expenses, it is important to claim the immediate lost income as well as income that a person will lose in the future due to diminished earning capacity. For instance, a victim may be unable to return to the same line of work and forced to accept a lower-earning position, or the victim may be unable to work again in any capacity.
  • Miscellaneous out-of-pocket expenses – These costs can include transportation expenses to and from doctor’s appointments and any wheelchairs or other assistive devices that a person needs.
  • Pain and suffering – The physical pain and suffering that an auto accident can cause is a type of harm that merits compensation. The severity of your injuries, your account and even the observations of family members and friends can help to establish this type of damages.
  • Emotional distress – Car accidents traumatize victims. Many people suffer anxiety, flashbacks and nightmares, which are symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), which can be a debilitating condition.
  • Punitive damages – These damages are not intended to compensate victims like other types of damages. Instead, they are meant to punish the person that caused the crash and to deter future misconduct.

Oklahoma law once placed a $350,000 cap on non-economic damages. However, in April 2019, the Oklahoma Supreme Court decided that the cap was unconstitutional and struck the law down. As a result, car accident victims in Oklahoma can now claim the full amount of damages they deserve.

How Do You Recover Damages After a Car Accident?

Edwards & Patterson Law will help you to understand and explore all of your options for seeking compensation for your injuries and losses after a car accident. Those options may include:

  • Injured driver suffering neck injury from car accident.Filing a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurer – Filing a claim with the negligent party’s insurance company is usually the first step after a car crash. The insurer should pay up to the policy limits of the negligent party’s auto insurance liability policy.
  • Filing a claim with your own insurer – Quite often in Oklahoma, negligent parties that cause auto accidents lack any liability insurance. If this occurs, accident victims can file a claim with their own insurance company if they have purchased uninsured motorist coverage (UM) or underinsured motorist coverage (UIM). This insurance is not mandatory in Oklahoma. Still, every driver should purchase it in order to provide them with additional options after a crash.
  • Seeking a settlement – Many auto accident claims can be resolved through settlement negotiations – either before or after the filing of a lawsuit. Our attorneys prepare cases for trial so that insurance companies know that we will be ready to put on a strong case if they fail to make a full and fair settlement offer.
  • Going to trial – If an insurance company fails to make a settlement offer that meets your needs and goals and is one that you are ready to accept, then our lawyers will be ready to fight for you in the courtroom.

Will Your Auto Accident Case Go to Court?

Many accident victims do not want to go to court because they believe it will drag out the process. They also may be nervous about testifying before a judge and jury. Fortunately, most personal injury cases do not go to trial. Typically, the only time a case will go to trial is when the insurer challenges liability or the total amount of damages which an accident victim demands.

An accident victim should never take the first settlement offer that an insurance company makes without first speaking with an attorney. Crash victims often accept the first offer because they are happy to receive anything at all. They then realize too late that the settlement is not enough to fully cover the costs of their injuries. However, they cannot go back to the insurer to collect more compensation. An attorney will know how to calculate the damages in your case and work with you to evaluate any settlement offers that you receive.

Get Help from an Oklahoma Car Accident Lawyer

After an auto accident, you are likely suffering from serious injuries and many other losses such as a diminished quality of life. If someone else was at fault for your crash, our experienced car accident lawyers at Edwards & Patterson Law can help you to pursue just compensation. We care. We fight. We win. And we will be ready to go to work for you right away. Contact us to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how we can assist you.

Tony Edwards

Tony Edwards is a McAlester native who has practiced civil litigation in Oklahoma for nearly four decades. Tony earned his undergraduate degree from East Central University and his law degree from the Oklahoma University College of Law. Today, he focuses his practice exclusively on the representation of accident and injury victims, including mass tort cases involving defective products. He holds an AV rating from Martindale-Hubbell, indicating the highest level in legal ability and ethical standards. In addition to his law practice, Tony serves as an elder in Lakewood Christian Church and is active in Shared Blessings, an organization which his wife, DeVonna, launched in 1998 to provide clothes for people in need.

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  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
  • Contact Edwards & Patterson Law Firm today for a free consultation.
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