My son and I were injured by a reckless teenage driver...

by Tracy
(USA)

My son and I were in an auto accident about a week ago. I was driving down a 2 lane street, myself in the far left lane and the other driver in the right far lane. As I proceeded to the intersection, all of a sudden I was hit on the right passenger side. He ran into my side view mirror, causing damage down the whole right side of my vehicle.

Honestly, I believe he just decided to make a left turn from the far right lane, right into my vehicle. The other driver was at fault. He was a teenager and simply said he was not paying attention.

I am now suffering from back, neck, and shoulder pain. I went to see a doctor 2 days after the accident. He said it was a strain/sprain, and prescribed me a muscle relaxant. 3 days later I went to the chiropractor and I am now undergoing treatment.

My job is very physically demanding. It requires standing, lifting, bending, reaching, and pushing, so because of that I was put on restrictions by the doctor. My job does not allow for me to work while on restrictions, so therefore I'm losing wages.

My son is also suffering from back and neck pain, and headaches. He saw the doctor 2 days later for the pain. 3 days later he saw the chiropractor, and now is undergoing treatment.

I haven't yet contacted the other driver's insurance company, and they haven't contacted me. I'm just wondering if I should first talk to a lawyer, or contact the other driver's insurance company. Also, what would be a fair amount to ask for? Thank you!

Visitor Question:
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ANSWER for "My son and I were injured by a reckless teenage driver...":

Tracy (USA):

As soon as reasonably possible, contact the other driver's insurance company. Concurrently notify your own insurance company. At this point, you don't know if the teenage driver is going to place the blame for the collision on you.

Once you contact the teenager's insurance company, they will assign your case to a claims adjuster. The adjuster will open a file and commence an investigation into the collision.

When dealing with the boy's insurance claims adjuster, be sure to make clear the circumstances of the collision, while stressing the collision was caused not by you, but by the teenager.

If you haven't yet secured an official accident report, do so now. From the facts you present, the police were not dispatched to the scene. That is common in non-injury car collisions. You can still go to your local police station or contact them online and download an accident report. Complete it and send it to your and the teenager's insurance company.

At this point, it isn't clear whether the teenager's insurance company will accept liability for the accident. As a result, there is no guarantee the company will agree to pay the medical and chiropractic bills you and you son are accumulating.

Your and your son's injuries are considered "soft tissue." Soft tissue injuries normally include sprains and strains to muscles, tendons, ligaments, whiplash, minor abrasions, contusions, and the like. These claims can normally be handled by the victim.

More serious "hard injury" claims such as head trauma, fractures, organ damage, and the like, are much more serious, and require the advise and counsel of a personal injury attorney.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from an attorney licensed in your state. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here, or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Judge Calisi

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TYPE OF ACCIDENT
AUTO ACCIDENT
PERSONAL INJURY
WORKERS COMPENSATION
MEDICAL ERROR
YES! I WANT FAIR COMPENSATION