Our legal team has a strong track record of success. Our law firm’s partners are each members of the elite, invitation-only Million Dollar and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forums, based on the sizable settlements and verdicts we have secured for injury victims and their families. Each one of our three attorneys has also received an AV Preeminent® rating in personal injury law in the Martindale-Hubbell® legal directory. We’re the law firm you want when you’ve been injured in a crash in Columbus.
Why do accidents happen in Columbus?
Collisions caused by other drivers in Columbus happen for many different reasons. Some of the most common causes are speeding or distracted driving, including texting while driving. Other times, drivers behave irresponsibly, whether it’s driving drunk or falling asleep at the wheel.
Distracted driving has continued to be a major cause of serious and fatal car accidents in Ohio. Distracted driving means that the driver is preoccupied with anything that distracts them from operating a motor vehicle safely. Talking or texting on a cellphone, eating, and other types of distractions continue to cause accidents that have lasting repercussions for both the driver of the car and accident victims. Self-driving technology and the continued and constant use of cellphones have only increased the risk of these types of accidents occurring. To get a sense of the full scope of the problem in Ohio, the Ohio State Highway Patrol maintains a Distracted Driving Dashboard.
Whatever the cause of your crash in Columbus or elsewhere in Ohio, don’t underestimate the complexity of your case. Make sure you talk to an attorney as soon as possible to learn more about all the legal options available to you.
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What to do after a car accident in Columbus
Knowing what to do is critical to protect your legal rights after a car crash. Make sure the scene is safe, then call 911 and have the Columbus Police or the Ohio State Highway Patrol investigate your accident. The police accident report will become a critical piece of evidence in your claim. Take pictures of the scene and any visible injuries, and get names and contact information for any witnesses. Keep your comments at the scene brief, however; don’t say anything about fault for the accident.
As soon as possible after a car accident, take two more steps: get medical attention and talk to an attorney. You need to get medical attention to protect your health, and you need legal advice to protect your rights. The longer you wait, the worse your situation can become. The sooner you talk to a Columbus car accident attorney, the better.
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Types of claims we handle in Columbus
Our Central Ohio law firm handles a wide range of claims involving crashes caused by other drivers in Columbus and throughout Franklin County. Some of the most common cases we handle often involve rear-end or head-on collisions. We also work with people hurt in T-bone or intersection accidents, as well as with families dealing with a fatal crash.
We represent people hurt in crashes on major highways like I-70 and I-71, and on side streets in Columbus and throughout the surrounding communities. No matter what type of car accident case you’re dealing with in Ohio, we will investigate and build a winning legal strategy.
In each case, we take the time to find out exactly what happened. Different types of cases require different strategies. That’s why we never take a one-size-fits-all approach. We take the time to find out exactly what happened to you. We will then work tirelessly to create a strategy that best suits the circumstances for your specific case.
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What makes accident claims so complicated?
You might think your claim will be straightforward. This is especially true if the other driver clearly caused your collision. Unfortunately, many crashes caused by other drivers often turn out to be complicated legal cases. Some of the reasons why include:
- The at-fault driver denies doing anything wrong.
- The other driver claims you were the one who caused the collision.
- The other driver doesn’t have insurance or is underinsured.
- The at-fault driver’s insurance company denies your claim.
Don’t try to tackle your accident on your own. Get an experienced Columbus car accident lawyer to level the playing field. Our dedicated legal team can demand the compensation you need and make sure your case receives the attention it rightfully deserves.
Dealing with complicated legal situations on your own can be overwhelming. Even knowing where to start might not be clear. That’s why we want to guide you through this complex process from start to finish. Whether it’s helping you fill out forms, making sense of your official accident report or filing a lawsuit on your behalf, you can count on us when it matters most.
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Who pays for car accidents in Columbus?
Ohio is a “fault” state for car accidents, so the person or company who caused the accident (and by extension their insurance company) is responsible for paying car accident compensation. Usually, that’s an at-fault driver involved in the crash, although other parties such as vehicle manufacturers can be liable in some circumstances.
In general, that means you have two options to get compensation for a car accident:
- File a “third-party” claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier.
- File a car accident lawsuit in civil court against the at-fault driver.
In Ohio, the state minimum insurance coverage is $25,000 for injuries to a single victim, $50,000 for injuries to multiple people in a single accident, and $25,000 for property damage. Unfortunately, that’s often not enough to cover an accident that causes serious injury. In addition, some Ohio motorists break the law and drive without insurance, or you may be hit by a hit-and-run driver who is never found.
If you’re hit by a driver who doesn’t have enough insurance – or doesn’t have insurance at all – then you can file an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim with your own insurance carrier, if you have UM/UIM coverage on your own policy. If you don’t have this coverage, your options are limited, but an attorney may be able to investigate and find other sources of compensation.
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How much is my claim worth?
Because of the seriousness of many injuries sustained by drivers, passengers or pedestrians, many claims turn out to be significant. Depending on the severity of your injuries, the length of your recovery and many other factors, your claim could be worth tens of thousands or several million dollars.
It’s also important to remember that your claim should cover all your expenses, now and in the future, including:
- Emergency medical care
- Ambulance fees
- Hospital fees
- Follow-up doctor’s appointments
- Physical therapy
- Car repair or replacement costs
- Replacement income during your recovery
- Lost future income if you cannot return to work
- Pain and suffering, in certain circumstances
The stakes are high when it comes to many claims. Insurance companies and their attorneys know this. That’s why they often take a tough stance and do everything they can to deny your claim.
We can fight back for you. We know what evidence to look for. We know what strategies work. We know how to negotiate. We know the games insurance companies play. They don’t intimidate us. If they refuse to cooperate, we will not hesitate to file a lawsuit or take other legal action on your behalf. If necessary, we can prepare your case to go to court in Columbus or wherever your accident occurred in Ohio. We won’t back down when the work gets tough.
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Why do I need a lawyer to deal with the car insurance company?
Insurance companies are supposed to help people after a car accident. But the fact is, they are not on your side. Their goal is to pay you as little as possible. Insurance companies are always concerned about the bottom line – and to keep profits up, they need to keep payments down. There are several tactics they use to pay you less. For example, they may:
- Dispute the seriousness of your injuries or the need for certain types of treatment.
- Seek access to your medical records to look for evidence of a pre-existing injury.
- Argue that you were at least partially responsible for causing the crash.
- Make a lowball settlement offer that falls far short of covering your total damages.
Insurance companies have lawyers who help them find ways to pay you less. You need an attorney who knows how to fight back.
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Put your trust in a car accident lawyer who outs your needs first. Contact us.
Don’t wait to take legal action. The clock is running. In most cases, you only have two years from the date of your accident to take legal action in Ohio, including filing a lawsuit. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. The sooner you take legal action in most cases, the better.
Past case results are no guarantee of future case outcomes, but here are some of the recoveries we have obtained for clients who were injured in car accidents:
Make the most of your opportunity for justice. Contact Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC and schedule your free consultation with an experienced Columbus, OH car accident attorney who cares about you. We want to help you rebuild your life.
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