Selecting a car accident lawyer
For any accident involving serious injuries or untimely fatalities you want to be sure that you have selected a quality injury lawyer.
We are located in Spokane Valley and licensed to practice personal injury law in the State of Idaho. We have our clients’ best interests in mind. When selecting a car accident lawyer for your case in Idaho be sure to find a highly rated attorney who is willing to take your case to trial if necessary. This type of attorney will help you obtain the maximum amount of compensation available for your injuries. CCD Law has been practicing since 1948 and has obtained millions in compensation for our clients.
After an accident in Idaho
If you’re involved in a motor vehicle collision, there are some important things that you can do to protect your rights and interests before contacting your car accident lawyer. Be prepared to do these things immediately after an accident if at all possible.
- Call the police. If the vehicles aren’t interfering with traffic, leave them where they came to rest, and call 911. If they’re interfering with traffic, pull them off of the road, but only if you can do it safely, and then call 911. Assuming that you’re injured, ask for both police and paramedics to come to the scene. Police will investigate the crash, and an accident report will be prepared. Contact and insurance information for the parties will be contained in the police report. It’s likely to contain contact information for passengers and any independent witnesses too.
- Get medical attention. If you’re injured at all, get treated by paramedics at the scene. They’ll make a record of both your subjective and objective symptoms. That’s the first step in the important medical records process. Don’t wait a day or a week to go to the emergency room. Get transported there by the paramedics. More detailed diagnostics and treatment will be provided at the emergency room. Personnel there will also generate further medical records that will substantiate your injuries. After you leave the emergency room, take photos of any obvious injuries like cuts, bruises or abrasions.
- Report the crash to your insurer. Notify your insurer of the accident as soon as you’re physically capable of doing so, and follow up with a letter confirming your phone conversation. Keep a copy of that letter. You don’t want your insurer to raise a late notice policy defense.
- Attend all medical appointments. The opposing insurer will be closely examining all of the medical records in connection with the care and treatment of your injuries. Attend all of your medical appointments. Insurers love to see missed appointments or gaps in treatment. That’s when they start raising questions about faking or malingering. Then they attack your credibility.
- Don’t give the opposing insurer a statement. It wouldn’t be unusual for the opposing insurer to contact you, “just to see how you’re doing.” Then the person calling will want to take a recorded statement. Never give a statement of any kind to an opposing insurer. The law doesn’t require you to give a statement under those circumstances, and you’ll be giving up valuable rights if you do give one. It’s likely that you’ll hurt your case, and it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to take back what you said. The insurer will only try to use that statement against you in the future.
- Contact us. Protecting and invoking your rights through an attorney is the second most important thing you can do after an accident. Contact us at your earliest possible convenience to arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation. Evidence can get destroyed or disappear, and witnesses can vanish. If we agree to represent you, we’ll start on your case immediately, and we’ll advance all litigation costs on your behalf while not asking for a single penny in legal fees until such time as we obtain compensation for you.
Negligence in auto accidents
The law of negligence controls nearly all auto accident cases. When somebody is negligent, he or she is careless and fails to use due care and caution for the safety of others and then harms somebody. A person might be negligent through an act or a failure to act. To prove negligence, the injured person must prove certain elements. Those elements are:
- That he or she owed a duty to the person claiming injury
- He or she breached that duty
- The breach of that duty caused injuries to the person making the claim
- The person claiming injury suffered legally recognized damages
If the person claiming injury fails to prove any single one of those elements, his or her case fails in its entirety.
Proof of negligence
The elements of negligence are proved through the facts and circumstances surrounding the auto accident. Those facts might include:
- Entries on police reports
- Violations of traffic laws
- Guilty pleas to traffic tickets
- Admissions of driving negligently
- Circumstantial evidence like paint transfer and corresponding damage to the vehicles
Comparative negligence in Idaho
There are times when fault can be attributed to both parties involved in an accident. Comparative negligence might be used as a partial or complete defense in an auto accident injury case. In a bench trial, a judge will determine whether an injured person was partially at fault for an accident. In a jury trial, the jury will make that determination.
Idaho is what’s known as a 50/50 comparative negligence state. In a 50/50 state, a party seeking compensation for damages isn’t allowed to recover anything if he or she is determined to be 50 percent or more at fault for an accident. If a 49 percent fault determination is made, compensation is allowed. For example, a claimant is determined to be 49 percent at fault for an accident, and a jury returns with a $100,000 award. That award is reduced by the 49 percent negligence attributed to the claimant, so his or her award is reduced down to $51,000. If a 50 percent comparative fault determination is made, he or she takes nothing.
The law of personal injury and auto accidents can be filled with complexities. Even a rear-end collision when a driver is 100 percent at fault can become clouded with medical issues. The Idaho legislature has set strict time limits within which personal injury lawsuits must be filed. That’s why it’s far better to meet with us as soon as possible after you’ve been injured in an accident. Don’t give the opposing insurer a statement that’s only going to be used against you in the future. Contact us first for a free consultation and case evaluation. We’ll even advance the costs of litigation, and no legal fees are due until we obtain compensation for you. Contact us right away after any accident.
Idaho accident statistics
According to the last estimates from the Idaho Transportation Department Office of Highway Safety, a traffic crash occurs in Idaho about every 23.8 minutes. Somebody is killed in a traffic crash every 47.1 hours, and somebody is injured in a traffic crash every 44.7 minutes. A motorcyclist is injured in a crash every 19.9 hours, a bicyclist is injured every 29.9 hours, and a pedestrian is injured every 39.9 hours. Those are surprising frequencies for a such a large state with a population of less than 1.7 million people.
In 2014, there were 22,134 reported traffic crashes in Idaho with a total of 186 fatalities and 11,768 injuries. The good news is that there were 25 fewer fatal crashes in 2014 than in 2013, and 28 fewer people were killed.
Coeur d’Alene auto accidents
Most high speed accidents and big rig crashes in Coeur d’Alene occur on Highway 95 or Interstate 90. I90 is actually a transcontinental freeway, and also happens to be the longest highway in the United States, stretching from Seattle, Washington to Massachusetts. Plenty of other accidents occur on Lincoln Way, Northwest Blvd, 4th Street, Kathleen Ave and even in grocery store parking lots.
Post Falls accidents
Just like Coeur d’Alen, Post Falls has I90 passing through it. In Post Falls there is one road that comes to everyone’s mind when they think of car accident, and that is the Pleasantview Road and Prairie Avenue intersection.
Contact a car accident lawyer today
If serious injuries are involved you will almost always be able to collect drastically more compensation with an attorney than you would without one. We have been representing clients since 1948 and have a long history of verdicts and settlements. Contact us today for a free, friendly, confidential consultation.