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Four Ways You May Be Wrong About Your Automobile Crash Case

Four Ways You May Be Wrong About Your Automobile Crash Case

If you've been injured in an automobile crash

, and someone else caused your injuries, you probably think that you have a vehicle accident case. Which makes sense.

There are four scenarios where you'd be wrong.


The normal auto crash case is relatively straightforward. You, the plaintiff, were injured by someone else's carelessness while they were driving. You may have been a pedestrian, on a bicycle, or a motorcycle. Someone else driving, that person was careless when they were driving and you got hurt because of what they did.Four Ways You May Be Wrong About Your Automobile Crash Case

In a normal auto accident case, you would go to a state court of general civil jurisdiction and sue the driver, his insurance company, and maybe your insurance company depending on your uninsured motorist/underinsured motorist coverage, the extent of your injuries, and the driver's coverage.

There are four scenarios where being ina car accident does not mean that the lawsuit you would want to bring is a normal vehicle accident case.

Here they are:

1. You Have a Workers' Comp Case

If you have been injured at work, the general rule is that you can make a claim under worker's compensation, but you cannot sue your employer. Worker's compensation is a trade - workers give up their right to sue and recover the damages they'd get in a lawsuit, and in exchange they agree to take an amount in recovery that is probably lower than would come from a lawsuit and, in exchange, it is (supposed to be) easier to recover from Worker's Comp. Worker's Comp is not a trade that any individual makes; it's a trade that is made for you by your legislature.

If you have been injured in an automobile crash that happened as a part of your job and while you were on the job, you may not be able to bring a lawsuit in order to recover for your injuries. If your auto crash was job-related, you need to make sure you explain to a lawyer everything that happened, and how it related to your work.

2. You Have a Claim Against the Government

Without knowing it, it could be that your claims stemming from an automobile crash are claims against the government. If they are, the law that applies, the amount you can recover, and what you have to do in order to make sure you recover, can be quite different. If you were injured in a two-car collision, and the person who was driving the other car is a government employee who was driving for work, your claim is a claim against the government.

Our legal system is inherited from the law in England. A long time ago, it used to be that all of the courts were established by the King, and the King would hear all the lawsuits. One basic rule in these courts was that you cannot sue the King. Of course, in the United States, we don't have a king. Nonetheless, the basic rule that our country adopted from England is the same; you can't sue the government without getting permission from the government first.

There are many exceptions to this basic rule, and I am absolutely not telling you that if you have been in a crash caused a government vehicle or person working for the government that you can't recover. Rather, if you have been injured by the government, you have to follow a number of very particular steps. The steps vary depending on the governmental entity that you're bringing a claim against, but failure to follow the steps set out for your governmental entity can function as a complete bar to your claim.

You should find out who was driving the other car. If it was someone working for the government; you should let your lawyer know as much about that as you can.

3. You May Have A Medical Malpractice Case

The next thing to be alert for in an auto case is medical malpractice. It may be that you were injured as a result of a vehicle crash, but that the best lawsuit to bring is not a lawsuit based just on the automobile crash, but a suit that is also against the doctor who treated you if that doctor was negligent.

The question is what caused your injuries. If it was the doctor's negligence, you have a medical malpractice suit. If it was the driver who was careless, you have an auto accident case. It's very likely, though, that you don't know exactly which caused your crash, and you may want to bring suit against both.

Telling your lawyer about your course of treatment is essential. This will allow your attorney to investigate who your claims are against. Your attorney needs to know if there are medical malpractice issues in your case early, because there are different procedural requirements for medical malpractice cases in many states. 4. You May Have A Products Liability Case

Imagine that you are in an automobile crash and it's a head on collision. Your seat belt fails. Your airbag fails. As a result, you're thrown out of your car. It might be that your injuries are caused less by the other driver's negligence, than by the failure of your seatbelt and your airbag. It may be, in other words, that if your seatbelt had worked properly and your airbag had deployed, you would not have been thrown out of your car.Four Ways You May Be Wrong About Your Automobile Crash Case

If that's the case, you may have the basis for a lawsuit against the company that made your car for making a defective product.


These are four ways your automobile crash case can turn into something other than just a lawsuit against another driver. Each example underscores the importance of telling your lawyer everything that happened before, during, and after the crash.

by: Matt Kaiser
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Four Ways You May Be Wrong About Your Automobile Crash Case