Auto & Motorcycle Accidents

Auto Accident Injury Lawyers You Can Trust

We'll Help You Get Your Auto Accident Compensation

Given the number of vehicles on the road these days, auto and motorcycle accidents are inevitable. The injuries caused by these accidents are traumatic and expensive. In such a state of mind, running around for compensation is the last thing you want to do. Let the lawyers at Premo Law Firm PLLC take over the case investigation so you can concentrate on recovering fast.

At Premo Law Firm PLLC, we leverage our experience in handling accident cases to investigate every possible cause of the accident to ensure that you receive full compensation for your injuries. Auto accidents are usually decided using the law of negligence. A person who negligently operates a vehicle may be required to pay the damages caused by their negligence to a person or property. 
auto accident

Automobile Accident FAQs

Often, in the event of an accident, it's unclear what one should do. Should you inform the police? What do you tell the doctors? What information should you provide or gather? It can be a confusing and stressful experience. For your convenience, we have some of the most frequently asked questions answered below:

What information should I obtain?
It's important that you seek immediate medical attention if you're seriously injured in an automobile accident. After everyone is out of danger and medical and police help has been summoned, obtain the following:
  • Full names of the drivers of all of the vehicles involved
  • Drivers' license numbers and addresses
  • If any of the drivers appear to be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, notify the police or other emergency personnel immediately
  • Full names and addresses of any passengers in any of the vehicles
  • Full names and addresses of any pedestrians or other parties involved
  • Full name, address and phone number of any witnesses to the accident
In addition to the above, you should observe and record notes about the following:
  • Did any person involved in the accident report any personal injury shortly after the accident?
  • Was medical assistance rendered at the scene of the accident?
  • What personal injury did the injured person report? Did anyone say "I'm not hurt"?
  • What was the actual location of the accident?
  • In what direction were the vehicles traveling just prior to the accident?
  • At what time of the day did the accident occur?
  • What were the weather conditions at the time of the accident?
  • Was there anything wrong with the vehicles before the accident, such as a broken headlight or brake light?
  • Was there any damage to the vehicles as a result of the accident? What parts of the vehicles were damaged?
  • Who are the registered owners of the vehicles (names and addresses)?
  • Were all vehicles involved in the accident insured? What are the names of the insurance companies and the policy numbers?
  • Did any of the vehicles need to be towed from the scene of the accident?
  • How did the accident occur?
  • Did anyone accept responsibility for the accident, or make a comment such as "It was my fault, I am sorry. I was speeding / not paying attention / not wearing my glasses / distracted / tired / late for work / in a hurry / my coffee had just spilled / I should've seen you but I was on my cell phone / my eyesight isn't what it used to be after dark, etc."?
  • Did the police come? If so, did they issue anyone a ticket? Which officers were present? What are their names and badge numbers?
  • Were any of the drivers involved driving while working or driving a company-owned vehicle?
Should I call the police?
Yes! It's important to contact the police immediately if you're involved in an accident. Doing so will provide proof of the accident, and will allow for an immediate investigation of the scene of the accident. In addition, police will take statements of witnesses, and will examine the other driver to check for drug or alcohol use. The police can also be valuable witnesses to your injury at the scene, and they can assist in securing an admission of fault from the negligent driver.

Even in minor accidents, resist the temptation to "keep things simple" by "settling up" with the other driver on the spot. You should make sure that you've not suffered injuries which don't develop symptoms until days or even weeks after the accident, and you should always consult with your doctor and an experienced attorney to make sure that you are aware of all the avenues of recovery available to you.

When should I contact an attorney?
After leaving the scene of an accident, or while still there, if you're safely able, you should immediately contact an attorney who's experienced in handling personal injury matters. At Premo Law Firm PLLC, we'll promptly arrange for an attorney to consult with you free of charge so as to enable us to immediately take action on your behalf, while all of the evidence is still "fresh." If necessary and feasible, we'll have an investigator conduct a thorough analysis of the accident scene so that no evidence goes undetected.

Should I contact my own insurance company?
Most auto insurance companies require their policyholders to promptly report every auto accident. Your insurance company will want to gather all the basic information concerning the accident for its records — whether you're at fault or not. Sometimes the insurance company will seek your authorization to make a recorded statement concerning the accident. We suggest that if you or your passengers were injured in the accident, or if you believe the insurance company might try to claim you're not covered or if you have any concerns about the adequacy of your coverage, you should contact an attorney before you go any further. This should certainly happen before you give the insurance company permission to record your conversation (NOTE: You should never give a statement to the other driver’s insurance company without consulting with an attorney). However, bear in mind that failure to provide information to your insurance company on a timely basis ( your policy will set forth how quickly you must notify the company), could result in loss of coverage for the accident, without it constituting bad faith by the insurer.

Should I go to the doctor?
Never hesitate to get checked out by medical professionals after an accident even when you feel okay. Many times the onset of physical complaints begins 12 to 24 hours after an accident. Even if you did walk away only feeling shaken up after being rear-ended by a truck, tomorrow morning when you get out of bed, it may be a different story.

It's also important that you get medical attention if you feel any pain or discomfort. Many people hope that their pain will go away on its own and wait for several weeks before finally succumbing and going to the doctor. Waiting to get treatment is not only not good for your health — it will hurt your chances of obtaining an appropriate settlement for your injuries since there will be no medical record of your injury at the time of the accident. Seeing a doctor following the accident will ensure a preliminary diagnosis and perhaps minimize the discomfort and future treatment you may need later.

Follow the doctor's advice to the letter and never miss a doctor’s appointment. Don't substitute your judgment for that of an experienced medical professional. If you do, it will be used against you in court.

If you've been in a serious accident, chances are that someone has already made a record of what has happened to you. There already is a police report, an on-the-job worker's compensation report, or the like. If your condition required immediate medical care, hospital records will confirm your injuries. Make sure you promptly follow-up with treatment from your regular doctor or an appropriate specialist following hospitalization.

Is there anything special I should tell my doctors?
When you're reporting your injury to police, paramedics, hospital staff, and doctors, take extra care to identify specific complaints, and don't omit any complaint you may have, no matter how minor. If something doesn't feel right, your doctor needs to have this information in order to render an informed medical opinion.

Even if you feel it's no big thing or not related to your accident, you still should recite all of your complaints. A dry mouth, a light headache, and a little dizziness may be evidence of something more serious. Anything that is out of the ordinary is a symptom and should be reported to assist your doctor in making an informed diagnosis.

For example, a patient who has very slight tingling in the fourth and fifth fingers and a minor stiffness in the neck, may not report the tingling sensation, which could be the sign of major disruption to a cervical disk. If that disk becomes a complete rupture that requires major surgery, it would've been far better to have had the initial medical diagnosis at the time of the accident in order to prove when the onset of the fracture to the outer wall of the disk occurred. Otherwise, the defense will argue that it could have occurred picking up a bag of groceries three weeks after the accident.

Do I need to take pictures of the accident scene?
Absolutely. Even if the police take photos, you should try to take several rolls of pictures if possible. Always take multiple rolls of film of the accident location, the vehicles involved, various approaches to the accident scene, and of the persons involved, particularly if they have suffered an injury. Plan on taking three times as many photographs as you think you might need, taking shots from multiple angles and locations. By moving around as if on the points of a compass, you'll enable accident reconstructionists to construct a more accurate diagram of the collision.

A good quality camera is obviously preferable, but even a small disposable camera is better than nothing, and they are normally widely available in convenience stores and gas stations if you don't have one in your vehicle. Additionally, you should IMMEDIATELY have the photographs developed by a competent film developer.

Do I to take photos right away or should I wait?
It's very important to take photos as close in time as possible to the time of the accident. This is particularly important when it's necessary to photograph impending skid marks. Tires don't immediately lock-up and change from rolling tires to skidding tires. During the braking process, a tire begins to leave an imprint on the roadway before actually skidding. These marks are impending skid marks and are faint marks that can normally be seen on the roadway for only 24 to 48 hours after a collision. An impending skid and a skid mark, when taken together, give a more accurate record of the actual speed of a car before braking. Lay a shoe or other easily measured item next to impending skid marks while photographing them so an accident reconstructionist can later compute actual distances based on the photographs. Additionally, you should IMMEDIATELY have the photographs developed by a competent film developer.

What about preserving other evidence besides photos?
In many cases, even though it may not seem important at the time, it later becomes vitally important to have access to the physical evidence of an accident. For example, in cases where a passenger is ejected from the vehicle, it's necessary to examine the seat belt to determine if it was functioning properly. If the seat belt is lost because the car which contains it is sold or destroyed, it may be impossible to bring a claim against the seat belt manufacturer and/or the car manufacturer — something which can make or break the recovery of damages in cases where there's little or no other adequate insurance coverage.

If the evidence is removed to another location, it's important to put everyone on notice by certified mail, including owners, tow operators, wrecking yards, police impounds and the like, that they must take every step to preserve important evidence, and the failure to do so will subject them to being sued for allowing evidence to be destroyed. In some cases, we're required to go to court quickly to get a restraining order and preliminary injunction in order to avoid alterations or destructive handling and testing of potentially incriminating evidence.

Should I talk to the other driver's insurance company? What if they call me?
Never give an oral statement to the other side’s insurance company. If you do, you'll regret it. If you're contacted, be polite, but decline to talk. Insurance companies' claims adjusters are professional negotiators, with extensive experience in using every psychological technique to maneuver you into giving information which can hurt your claim, including discouraging you from using the professional services of a lawyer.

Claims adjusters are hired because they sound good over the telephone, but they're well trained by insurance company lawyers to ask questions in a manner designed to hurt your case and help theirs. You can't beat experts at their own game. Do not try it. Simply say, "Thank you for calling. I'm not prepared to discuss this matter with you at this time."

Disclaimer

In all matters involving personal injury, it's essential that measures be taken promptly to preserve evidence, investigate the accident in question, and file a lawsuit prior to the deadline imposed by the Statute of Limitations. If you or a loved one is a victim of personal injuries, call us now at 518-436-8000 or submit a simple Case Review Form. The initial consultation is free of charge, and if we agree to accept your case, we'll work on a Contingent Fee basis, which means we get paid for our services only if there's a monetary award or recovery of funds. Don't delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.

The above is not legal advice. That can only come from a qualified attorney who is familiar with all the facts and circumstances of a particular, specific case and the relevant law. See Terms of Use.

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