If you’ve just been in a minor car accident, it’’s very likely that you aren’t thinking straight. You might have minor whiplash, you’re angry, and you have a damaged car. First things first, it’s important to remain calm. Then you’re going to want to start a quick process to protect yourself and your future claim. You might have never been in this situation before, in that case— we have you covered. Following, you will quick to do list for handling a minor car accident in a timely, and efficient manner.
How to Handle A Minor Car Accident: Making Sure You’re Safe and Covered
First things first, are you okay?
Are you dizzy? Can you see straight? Do you have feeling in your extremities? It is important to give yourself a once over. Adrenaline is likely pulsing through your body, and that typically makes it difficult to know the extent of your injuries right away. If you need emergency medical attention, then the rest of the accident can be handled secondarily. First things first, you need to make sure you are okay to handle the situation. Not to mention, it’s a bit more difficult to place a claim for injuries after you’ve left the scene of the accident.
If you are able— move your vehicle out of the roadway
It is the law to do so, for one. But also, trying to hash out this whole process while cars are whizzing by and honking— is pretty nerve wracking. You’re likely to forget something. So, if your car is not smoking, or totaled, then it is important for you to get it to the shoulder— same goes for the other party.
Call the police
Many choose to lead with this— others choose not to do it at all. My advise? Call in the accident. It is not uncommon for the at-fault party to suggest handling the claim outside of the law and between the two of you. That is entirely up to you, but often ill-advised. What happens in most of these cases, is that the guilty party will avoid paying and eventually disappear. Obviously, you are welcome to handle the accident in whatever manner you see fit— but, coming from experience— call the police and have them create an official accident report
Check out the damage, exchange insurance information, and call as soon as possible
Examine both vehicles as you wait. Take pictures of both vehicles and their damage, as well as the scene of the accident. Both of you will want to do so for your own records, and in the case of disagreement. Swap insurance information, names, phone numbers, write down license plate info— document everything. When you have all information, call your insurance company. It is best to do so as soon as possible. Dealing with an accident always takes a while, and most of it is waiting around. So, use the time to call your insurance. Ask their opinion, make sure before you leave that you’ve gotten everything they need— let them guide you.
The key here, is to remain calm and get it handled as soon as possible. An accident is less than ideal, but it is not the end of the world. So, follow your steps, document, and move on with your day. We wish you luck in dealing with this process.
The aftermath of a car crash is often more difficult to deal with than the crash itself. From insurance claims, to fixing a vehicle, and taking care of your body. Whiplash, back pain, and concussions are some of the most common injuries and ailments following a car crash. And while the method for dealing with these is often not much, you might benefit greatly from visiting a chiropractor. Chiropractic care following an accident often goes unconsidered, but it could be one of your greatest allies. You’re trying to find a means of getting your body back to 100%, and you ultimately cannot do that on your own.
Chiropractic Care For Crash Recovery
What can a chiropractor treat?
A chiropractor deals with spinal misalignment. Ultimately any head and neck injury is rooted in your spine so they manipulate it from the stem of the injury. They do not deal with bones, bruises, or anything of the like— they just manipulate and help your body to decompress after an accident or injury. Whiplash is one of the most common injuries, as we’ve said, and whiles can heal much quicker with the intervention of a trained professional.
What are the benefits of chiropractic care?
Well, for starters, chiropractic care is non-invasive. Meaning no needles, no incisions— it is a completely natural means of combatting neck and back pain. Chiropractors go through tons of training to gain an expertise in bones, muscles, and tissues. This means that they’re familiar with the way the body works and how to get it back to that 100% we talked about. Also, there are tons of ways to go about visiting a chiropractor. There are formal settings, or quick ones where you pay a monthly fee and drop in whenever you want. Because of this range in setting, chiropractic care is easily accessible, and obtainably cheap.
Let’s talk whiplash…
Whiplash is cause by sudden, unexpected movement in your neck. This can occur in any car accident, but especially one where you’re rear-ended. A chiropractor can help with this because it has essentially jammed up your spine and likely tweaked your neck pretty badly. So, they’ll use hands-on techniques and handheld instruments to help correct it over time. It’s non-invasive and could likely prevent you from having to have surgery in the long run.
How long do I have to go?
It ultimately depends on the severity. But, many people go to a chiropractor as a means of preventative care. While visiting during your injury is helpful to a large degree, visiting the chiropractor once a month for maintenance anyways— can work wonders in keeping your body and your bones where they should be. We all slump, sit at desks, and put a lot of stress on our bodies every day. Regular chiropractic care can be a great preventative measure.
Getting older comes with changes. As the years pass by, we face changes. Some good, some bad. But, through all that time— we learn a little bit more. One of the toughest things about getting older is staying safe while driving. Our vision typically gets worse, reflexes start to waver, and in some ways, we don’t have the same abilities that we used to. Staying safe behind the wheel is always a concern, it has been since we started driving.
We’ve always worked hard to be good drivers, and good participants in our roadway systems. But, with age, the implications of this get to be a little bit more than they were. So we’re here to help you, senior drivers. Whether you need to hire a driver, call in your kids, or you’re doing just fine— there are a few steps to take before you get behind the wheel as a senior driver.
Staying Safe Behind the Wheel: Senior Drivers
Timely Hearing and Vision Tests
The first step to staying safe behind the wheel, is making sure you’re equip to be there in the first place. Taking part in annual or semi-annual hearing and vision tests are the best way for you to make the decision. If either of the two are getting progressively worse from year to year, it is best to start finding ways to limit your driving. If your eyesight and hearing are still tip top— that’s great! But, it still wouldn’t hurt to have a plan in place for when/if the day comes. Whether that be delivery grocers, hiring someone to do your shopping and errands for you— whatever it is, making a plan for that time is a responsible and smart way to be prepared.
If It’s Nasty Out, Stay In
Driving when the weather is nasty, always comes with a higher risk. So, try to avoid those times if you can. No one wants to get stuck out in a bad storm or very heavy rain. If you can avoid it, do so. While this article is poignant to senior drivers, this is a fact anyone should adhere to. Whether you believe yourself to be an amazing driver, or not, you cannot account for the actions of other people. So, if you can skip it— skip it.
Do Not Drive Under the Influence
Prescription medications can have some pretty nasty side effects. From hallucinations, to blackouts, to headaches, stomach aces, suicidal thoughts… the list is, quite literally, endless. Any one of these side effects could be detrimental if you are behind the wheel of a car. So, the best choice you can make is to not drive and take medications at the same time. If you are still under the influence, ask for help or hold off on running your errands to ensure yours, and everyone else’s, safety.
Without a doubt, insurance policies are hard to read. After all, who writes this way. Furthermore, they are even harder to understand without a law degree. As a result, oftentimes they are filled with ambiguous terms. Whether that ambiguity is held against the insurance company depends on a number of factors. Hence, an ambiguous policy can work for or against you. Consequently, lawyers tend to argue ambiguity to try and get justice for their clients. Bardsley v Government Employees Insurance Co. is a case where a party challenges a policy’s clarity.
Ambiguous Terms in SC Insurance Policies
Ludwig drove a Maserati owned by his company SDI. While going between 85 to 96 miles per hour in a 35 mile per hour zone, Ludwig lost control. As a result, he crashed his car into the rear of the Bardsley’s home. In addition, he struck Frederic, killing him, and then continued through the home and onto the front yard. At the time of the accident, SDI and Ludwig had $3 million in liability coverage. Furthermore, the Bardsleys had a State Farm homeowner’s policy for $500k. And finally, the Bardsleys also had auto insurance through Government Employees Insurance Co. (GEICO) that provided $400k in underinsured motorists coverage. Although GEICO covered property damage, it would be excess over other valid insurance. Subsequently, State Farm paid to repair the home but then claimed that Bardsley should reimburse them. GEICO refused to pay anything for the property damage. No surprise here.
Ultimately, Bardsley settled with State Farm and reimbursed State Farm via a settlement with Ludwig. However, she later sued GEICO for her losses. After hearing arguments, the trial court found the other insurance provision to be ambiguous but offered no reasoning. Rather, the judge granted summary judgment in favor of Bardsley, and GEICO appealed. However, the SC Supreme Court reversed and found that the GEICO policy was, in fact, not ambiguous. Instead, a contract provision is only ambiguous if more than one meaning is possible or if the meaning is unclear. Here, the Court found nothing about the provision was unclear. In addition, the Court found no factual or legal basis in the circuit court’s Order. Consequently, the Order could not stand. It is ironic that the ambiguity in the Order was more important than the ambiguity in the policy. Go figure.
Lawyers and Contracts
So leave it up to lawyers to cluster up a written agreement. Then they cluster it up further on appeal. You just cannot make this stuff up. However, on a serious note, little phrases in contracts can make a big difference. Try not to worry. This is what we do, and we are here to help when you need us. After all, ambiguous terms are what lawyers live for. Call now for more information and options. You’ll sleep better after learning your rights and what to expect.
When you bring an accident case, you have the burden of proof and must follow personal injury evidence rules. Because the rules are complex, we explain here how presenting your case properly is so important. Hence winning your case means you must present the right evidence. However, sometimes the best evidence is not admissible. So we explain the recent case of Busillo v. City of North Charleston where the rules of personal injury evidence played a critical role.
Personal Injury Evidence Rules
While on patrol for the City of North Charleston, Officer Terrell attempted a U-turn. Consequently, he hit Busillo’s car causing property damage and personal injury. Subsequently, Busillo filed a lawsuit for his property damage, and a panel found that the City liable. In addition, Busillo also filed a claim in circuit court for personal injury. However, in this case, Busillo submitted evidence of property damage to her car. While the evidence included a summary of expenses, an expert witness also testified about depreciation to Busillo’s car. Because the jury returned a verdict for Busillo, the City appealed.
First, the City claimed the court made a mistake in admitting the two pieces of evidence. However, the Court of Appeals did not agree and upheld the trial court. Regarding the expert witness, the court found that City did not preserve their argument. In order to appeal something, a party must first raise the issue at trial to preserve it. Although the City had three arguments, they did not properly raise the first. In addition, the City failed to raise the other two arguments as well. As a result, the City was not allowed to raise the issues on appeal. Rather, trial courts have a lot of room when it comes to admitting evidence. Looks like mistakes made the difference. Fortunately, the injured person won their case. Hooray for justice. But it doesn’t always work out this way. And you only get one shot.
Experience Counts in Court
Because personal injury evidence rules can make the difference, trial experience matters. While most cases settle, sometimes a trial is necessary. So when you get to court, make sure your lawyer knows the rules. Otherwise, you could lose. Better safe than sorry. Because it matters, choose your lawyer carefully. Don’t worry. We’ve got you. And we’ll be there until the end. That’s our pledge and promise to you.
Because of continued changes in technology, the latest craze is all about self-driving cars. Predictably, the experts say the end of driving by humans is near. And of course there will be no more accidents. But just how realistic are either of these most recent tales of the future?
So Will Self-Driving Cars End All Accidents
Not surprisingly, distracted driving remains the main cause of fatal car accidents. Because 90% of accidents result from human error, self-driving cars could potentially solve this problem. However, driving habits take time to change. In addition, young drivers want the freedom and thrill of actually driving. So do some of us older folks.
Here is the problem. As long as both self-driving and human-driven cars on the road, the problem will continue. Hence, the human factor is still there. Maybe there will be fewer crashes based on more self-driving cars. Only time will tell.
Other Safety Issues
While car driving may be safer, what if passengers feel safer and stop using their seat belts? In addition, pedestrians may rely on safety technology and take more chances. After all, they think the vehicle’s computers will stop the car and save them. Like I taught my children when they started driving, trust your own instincts. And always give yourself plenty of time and room in case something on the car fails. Hence the emphasis on mechanical failure. Regardless, this issue will be litigated and regulated because this generation is used to driving on their own. After all, people also did not like mandatory seat belt or child car seat laws. Yet now we know these changes have saved countless lives.
While the future may be bright, we are still on guard for now. So if a human behind the wheel causes you harm, call us for help. While we hope you never need our services, we will be there if you do. You have our word, and we have your back.