April is Distracted Driving Awareness month in Nevada and across the United States. According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) there are eight people killed every day in accidents caused by distracted drivers and another 1,200 suffer serious injuries.
In the state of Nevada alone, there are 3,500 people injured each year in distracted driving crashes.
The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that there is a car accident every eight seconds in this country, and one out of every five accidents is caused by a distracted driver.
Despite the well-known dangers, many drivers – of all ages – continue to engage in distracted driving behaviors while behind the wheel of their vehicles.
One of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving is the use of a cell phone or other hand-held device. In Nevada, it is illegal for all drivers to use a hand-held phone or other device while driving.
The state has also made this a primary law, which means that law enforcement can pull you over and issue a violation if they see you using your device.
In addition to being illegal, cell phone use while driving is also very dangerous. If you text and drive, you are 23 more times likely to be in a car crash. Talking on the phone while driving quadruples your risk of being in an accident.
Even hands-free devices cause a dramatic increase in accident risk. When you are talking on a cell phone, almost 40 percent of the brain activity needed to concentrate on driving is now focused on the conversation instead of the road.
It is important to realize that it is not just cell phone use that causes to distracted driving accidents.
Other activities that many people engage in while driving include eating and drinking, using a GPS system, taking to passengers, fiddling with vehicle music or entertainment systems, grooming, reading, and taking selfies.
All drivers can make the pledge to drive distraction-free by practicing safe driving behaviors. Before you begin to drive, make sure to set your GPS, radio, seats, mirrors, etc. so that none of those items will need your attention when you are driving. Put your phone on silent and put it away, either in a purse or glove box. When you are behind the wheel, do not eat, apply makeup or other grooming, or reach across the seats to grab an item. Stay completely focused on the road and if you do need to use your device, pull off the road to a safe area to do so.
If you are injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, contact an experienced Las Vegas car accident attorney to discuss what your legal options may be against the driver for your pain and loss.
One of the most common questions clients ask Nevada car accident lawyers is how long will it be before their personal injury claim is settled. Unfortunately, there is no quick and easy standard answer to that question.
Many different factors can affect how quickly this legal process plays out. One of the most significant factors is the recovery process for your injuries, the overall course of your medical treatment, and how long that treatment and rehabilitation will take.
Another primary factor is the behavior of the insurance company that is evaluating the claim and considering settlement. Those insurance companies have the time, resources, and experience to fully investigate every aspect of your claim and promote defenses against it.
The insurance adjusters can be very skilled at finding potential defenses to and weaknesses in any claim. The adjusters use the information they uncover as leverage to persuade accident victims to settle too quickly or for far less than what they deserve for their injuries.
A common scenario is that a victim sustains what they believe to be a minor injury, such as lower back pain. Often a trip to the emergency room after the accident results in x-rays that show no broken bones and the hospital prescribes a mild pain medication and a muscle relaxer.
Although the medications provide some immediate relief, the accident victim is no closer to understanding the full potential of their injury after the visit.
An experienced insurance adjuster knows that it is common for the full extent of back injuries not to reveal themselves immediately after a car crash. That adjuster will diligently work to get that victim to quickly settle the case, often offering quick and easy money to manipulate the victim into thinking they are “doing them a favor.
Accident victims often take the quick money and decide they can tough it out and sign a release. Shortly after signing away their rights, accident victims may begin experiencing major back issues which doctors trace to the car accident.
However, the settlement and signed release precludes the victim from receipt of any further compensation for future medical treatment, lost time from work, pain and suffering, or any of the other potential losses or injuries. The accident victim becomes a victim a second time.
Therefore, it is critical for car accident victims to seek out the advice of a skilled Nevada car accident attorney.
A seasoned injury attorney knows that it is important to wait until your doctor has declared that you have reached your medical maximum of recovery from your injury, determined if you have any permanent injuries and whether you will require future medical treatment.
Although a Las Vegas car accident lawyer cannot make your medical treatment and recovery happen faster, they can keep the legal process on track and moving forward.
Having a Las Vegas car accident lawyer beside you every step of the way during these legal proceedings, protecting your rights and looking out for your best interests against the insurance company will give you the peace of mind to focus on your health and recovery.
If you have been injured in an accident in Nevada, you may be wondering if you are able to file a personal injury claim for compensation for those injuries.
Under state law, if your injuries were caused by the negligence or recklessness of another party, then you may be entitled to file for damages. A seasoned Nevada personal injury attorney can explain all your options.
In order to file a personal injury lawsuit against someone, you have to prove they were at fault. This is referred to as liability. A person is liable for an accident if they were negligent or careless. Your attorney will gather evidence and investigate the accident to prove liability.
In an accident lawsuit, an insurance company (or judge or jury) will examine the following questions regarding the duty of care the person who is accused of being at-fault had and what effect it had on causing the accident:
- Did that person owe a duty of care to the victim?
- Did that person break the duty of care agreement?
- Did that person display unreasonable conduct which resulted in the injury?
Once liability has been established, the second part of a personal injury claim is establishing whether the victim has actually suffered injuries. This is usually done by presenting medical records, physicians statements, and medical bill receipts to show the extent and expense of the victim’s injuries.
If the injuries have left long-term or permanent damage, a Nevada accident attorney may also obtain statements from vocational experts to show the full impact the injury or injuries has had on the victim’s daily life.
If you have been injured in an accident, you should contact a skilled Nevada personal injury attorney to determine if you can pursue damages against the responsible party or parties. Your attorney can also explain to you what the statute of limitations is under the law for your particular type of accident claim.
One of the major attractions that draw people to driving a motorcycle is the feeling of being on the open road. That feeling of freedom, however, offers no protection in the event of a motorcycle accident, which is why many motorcycle crash victims suffer such serious injuries.
It is important for victims to contact a skilled Nevada motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible after the accident because there is a statute of limitations on how long accident victims have to file a lawsuit against the party or parties who caused the accident.
Under the laws of the state of Nevada, a person who has injuries caused by a motorcycle crash usually only has two years from the date they were injured to file a personal injury claim against the person or persons responsible for that accident.
Once that time has passed, the court will most likely dismiss the lawsuit because the statute of limitations has expired.
There are a couple of exceptions to the two-year statute. If the party who caused the accident was employed or affiliated with a government entity – such as an RTC driver or a municipal DPW worker, the victim only has one year to file their lawsuit, but must also file a notice with the Attorney General’s office, notifying the state of your intention to do so.
The statute if also different for minors who are injured in motorcycle accidents. The clock does not begin ticking until they turn 18 years of age. They then have two years in which to file their claim.
Talk to a Personal Injury Attorney Today
Statute of limitations can be tricky but they can also be crucial to filing your personal injury claim.
This is why it is important to consult with a Nevada motorcycle accident lawyer to find out what all your legal options may be.
When a person is injured in an accident that is caused by another party’s negligence, they are usually entitled to be compensated for the injury, either through an insurance settlement or a personal injury lawsuit.
It may be difficult for the victim themselves to try to determine that total amount of damages they should receive. Although actual financial expenses and financial losses are tangible, damages for pain and suffering or other types of losses are not so obviously determined.
Damages which are tangible include medical expenses the victim has incurred for his or her injuries. If the injury is one which requires future medical treatment, those expenses also need to be calculated into the total amount of awarded damages.
The same holds true for loss of income. The victim is entitled to receive reimbursements for lost wages they have suffered because of their injuries and also for future lost wages.
This can include the difference in the amount of income they could have earned compared to what they will be able to earn if their injuries prohibit them from returning to their prior job.
Accident victims are also entitled to collect damages for the pain and suffering they have endured from their injuries. Since this does not have a readily available dollar amount, a Las Vegas auto accident attorney must somehow calculate those damages the victim is entitled to. First, the attorney will determine:
- The extent of the injuries;
- The extent of past and future medical treatment;
- The extent of recovery or lack of recovery the victim has had;
- The extent the injuries have had on the victim’s daily life; and
- The extent of any long-term or permanent effects of the injuries.
Using the answers from those question, the attorney will choose a number between 1.5 through 5 and multiply it by the amount of the other expenses the victim has incurred. This total is what the victim is entitled to for pain, suffering, and other losses.
It is usually not on an accident victim’s best interest to rely on the insurance company to make that determination since most insurance companies will attempt to offer much less than the actual damages the victim should receive.
This is why it is important to consult with an experienced Las Vegas car accident lawyer as soon as possible after being injured in an accident.
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