Bend Car Accident Lawyer

Car accidents are a leading cause of injury and death in Oregon and across the nation. If you have been hurt in a car crash that was someone else’s fault, contact Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC right away. Our Bend, Oregon car accident lawyers have a history of success representing injured people.

Bend car accident attorney

Why Choose Our Firm?

Car Accident Statistics

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports the following car accident facts pertaining to the most recent years for which statistics are available:

Statewide Car Accident Statistics

In Oregon alone, the Department of Transportation (ODOT) reports that in 2016, there were:

What are the most common car accident injuries?

Most vehicle accident injuries are minor but remember that we said even minor injuries can lead to major medical expenses. Common injuries we deal with in the aftermath of a Bend car accident include:

These injuries vary in severity, but all of them can lead to expenses that can lead to financial instability for victims and their families. The cost for first-year medical care for a spinal cord injury ranges from $359,000 to over $1.1 million according to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center.

Common Causes of Car Accidents

Car accidents have a variety of causes, but most are caused by driver error. According to the 2016 Oregon Traffic Crash Summary, common driver errors leading to a crash include:

How important is it to seek medical care after a car crash?

Who Is Liable?

Oregon is a modified comparative negligence state. This means if you are assigned part of the blame for an accident caused by another driver, you can still recover damages, but they will be reduced by your share of fault, provided it is not greater than the fault of the other party. If your level of fault is determined to be greater, you will not be able to recover any damages at all.

For example: In a case where another driver caused your accident and injuries, the jury determines that you were 10% responsible for the crash. If your damages total $100,000, they will be reduced by 10%, leaving you with a $90,000 award.

What types of damages can I receive for my car accident claim?

There are various damages that a Bend car accident victim may be able to recover. These can include both economic and non-economic damages such as:

Your attorney will work to calculate your total losses in order to properly negotiate a settlement with the insurance companies. However, insurance companies are not your friend, and their goal is to pay as little as possible in a settlement. If they do not offer an amount that will satisfactorily cover your total expenses, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit.

What if I am hit by an uninsured motorist or a hit-and-run driver?

All drivers in Oregon are required to carry at least $25,000 in uninsured motorist coverage. If you are struck by an uninsured motorist or a hit-and-run driver, your insurance will “fill-in” for the at-fault driver’s insurance. You will know quickly whether or not a driver who hits you does not have insurance. The police will conduct a preliminary investigation of the crash and tell you whether the other driver has insurance.

What evidence should I gather after a car accident?

The most important thing to do after a crash is to ensure everyone is safe. You need to report the collision and ensure law enforcement gets there. Then, you need to do everything you can to preserve evidence of the crash.

Nearly everyone has access to a camera now thanks to the prevalence of smartphones. If you have a camera at the time of the crash and you are not seriously injured, start taking pictures of everything. You do not know exactly what evidence will be important, so snap as many photos as possible:

When you take pictures, try to take them of the same things at varying distances to give a good idea of the overall scene. Take one at 5 feet away, then 15 feet, then 20 feet or further. Get photographs of the same thing from differing angles. All of these photographs will help claims adjusters or work as evidence in a personal injury lawsuit.

If you are injured and unable to take photos, ask someone else to do so for you. If you had a passenger in the vehicle that is unharmed, ask them to photograph the scene. In many cases, a witness to the crash may stop and offer assistance. You can ask them to take photographs and send them to your phone through text message or an email.

Will witnesses be helpful for my claim?

Witnesses can be helpful to your case. While you may be able to speak to witnesses at the scene, you will be better off getting the contact information of anyone present so you or your attorney can reach them about the crash. Do not rely on law enforcement to properly interview everyone and obtain their contact information. These witnesses will be helpful in a case, as they can share:

The most helpful thing a witness can do if you were struck by a negligent driver is give their straightforward account of what they saw happen. We want facts from witnesses, not what they heard about an incident or think may have happened.

What if I was partially at fault in my accident?

Oregon is what is called a modified comparative negligence state. This means that you can still recover damages from a car accident personal injury lawsuit, but your damages will be reduced depending on your share of the negligence.

As long as your share of the negligence is deemed to be less than the other party’s share, you will be able to recover damages. If your level of fault is greater than the other party’s, you will not be able to recover any damages. Oregon law is binding on judges and juries and guides insurance settlement decisions as well.

Proving fault is often difficult and involves looking at the totality of the crash. That is why it is so vital to secure help from a qualified and experienced Bend car accident lawyer to help with your case. You can be sure the other side will do everything they can to lower their liability in the case.

Why You Need a Lawyer

Car accidents can cause serious injuries with long-term consequences for the victim, including extensive medical bills and time away from work. If you have been involved in a serious wreck that was someone else’s fault, your best course of action is to consult with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Our Bend, Oregon personal injury lawyers can:

Connect with Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC

At Paulson Coletti Trial Attorneys PC, we are dedicated to pursuing justice and compensation for our clients. Our attorneys have a high success rate, both in and out of the courtroom. Contact us today if you have been hurt in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence.