Denver Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents can cause serious and even fatal injuries, property damage, and cause injured drivers to miss time at work. When a car accident happens because of a driver’s negligence, the injured parties can secure compensation for their losses through personal injury claims. At Bryan & Terrill Law, we want to help drivers in the Denver area who have suffered losses due to the negligent actions of others on the road. It’s vital to know what to do after a car accident and your options for legal recourse against a negligent driver.
Negligence in Auto Accident Lawsuits
The first step an injured driver will need to take in securing compensation is to establish fault for the accident. Personal injury law revolves around the legal concept of negligence, and proving negligence hinges on four factors:
- Duty. Every driver on the road owes a legal duty of care to everyone else around them to abide by the traffic laws and operate their vehicles safely. A plaintiff in an auto accident case must prove the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of care at the time of the accident.
- Breach. Next, the plaintiff has to show the court how the defendant breached his or her duty of care. This could be a specific action, such as speeding, or inaction, such as failing to stop for a red light.
- Causation. The plaintiff must prove that his or her injuries and losses resulted from the defendant’s negligence and not some other cause.
- Damage. Finally, the plaintiff must have suffered a tangible or measurable loss. If the plaintiff did not suffer an injury or incurred no financial loss, he or she has no claim.
If the plaintiff can prove these four things as facts in a personal injury case, he or she will likely succeed in the claim. However, Colorado operates under a contributory negligence law, meaning that plaintiffs may still sue if they are partially at fault for their damages, but they will lose a percentage of their case award, equivalent to their percentage of fault in causing the damages. For example, if a judge finds a plaintiff 25% at fault for a $100,000 case, the plaintiff will only receive $75,000.
Damages in Car Accident Claims
Plaintiffs who succeed in their personal injury claims can secure several types of compensation, including:
- Property damage. The plaintiff can sue for the cost of repairing or replacing his or her vehicle and any other personal property broken or destroyed in the accident.
- Medical expenses. The plaintiff can sue for all of his or her expenses resulting from medical care after a car accident. This can include ambulance fees, hospital bills, the costs of rehabilitation and physical therapy, and any other healthcare-related costs.
- Lost income. A car accident may leave a plaintiff unable to return to work for an extended time, or at all. The plaintiff may sue for the wages he or she would have reasonably expected to earn in that time.
- Pain and suffering. Many car accident injuries are very painful, and the experience of a violent wreck can be traumatizing. Plaintiffs in car accident lawsuits can sue for their physical pain, mental anguish, and emotional distress caused by a defendant’s negligence.
Securing compensation for a personal injury claim starts with hiring the right attorney. Reach out to the team at Bryan & Terrill to learn more about our firm and how we can help. If you want to get started building your case, schedule a consultation to meet with one of our attorneys.