Roswell Car Accident Lawyer
Car Accidents in Roswell, New Mexico
When you or a loved one suffer injuries in a car accident, you must juggle getting medical help, repairing or replacing your vehicle, and dealing with an unfamiliar insurance company. The Fine Law Firm can help you evaluate your damages and enter negotiations with the knowledge you need to succeed.
At The Fine Law Firm, Our Car Accident Attorneys Are:
- Dedicated local attorneys and recognized leaders in legal services in New Mexico
- Recipients of the highest national ratings with both Martindale-Hubbell and Avvo
- Successful in recovering compensation for clients in 99% of settlements and verdicts
Our firm is committed to helping injured victims move forward with their lives. Call our office today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about our services. We will meet with you right away to answer your questions and start building your car accident claim.
How Can a Roswell Car Accident Attorney Help Me?
Insurance adjusters try to settle claims as quickly and cheaply as possible. Adjusters base their payouts on previous payouts for claims similar to yours while keeping their bottom line in mind. The car accident attorneys at The Fine Law Firm will examine all of the evidence to determine what amount of compensation you need to be free of any debt attributable to the crash at the end of your claim.
Our Roswell car accident attorneys will work aggressively to prove your claim by:
- Investigating your car accident
- Identifying all the liable parties
- Locating all available insurance policies providing coverage applicable to your accident and injuries
- Obtaining your medical records and having them examined by experts to determine the extent of your injuries and prognosis for recovery
- Accounting for all of your accident-related costs and losses, both present and future
- Filing claims with any insurance company(s)
- Negotiating for a just and proper settlement(s) of your claim
- Filing a car accident lawsuit(s) if there is no settlement(s)
- Taking your case before a judge and jury
Never give a recorded statement, sign any documents, or accept any payment from an insurance company before speaking to an experienced Roswell car accident attorney. Contact The Fine Law Firm before mistakenly signing away your right to additional compensation the insurance company owes you.
Common Types of Car Accidents and Injuries
Car accidents are an everyday occurrence. While most accidents are not fatal, they can still produce lifelong injuries or chronic conditions. It is essential to seek medical help after a car accident as some injuries are internal or develop at a later date.
Some common types of car accidents are:
- Side-impact collisions
- Single-car accidents
- Hit-and-run accidents
- Multiple-vehicle crashes/pileups
- Rear-end collisions
- T-bone collisions
- Vehicle rollovers
Injuries resulting from car accidents may include:
- Bruises and lacerations
- Bone breaks and fractures
- Internal injuries
- Sprained or strained muscles
- Spinal cord or disc injuries
- Head or brain injuries, including traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Eye injuries
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Even minor injuries from a car accident can result in expensive medical care, pain and suffering, and lost wages. No matter what types of injuries you suffered in a recent car accident in Roswell, contact our attorneys to find out how we can help you.
What Causes Car Accidents in Roswell?
Most car accidents are preventable. They take place when someone fails to use a normal or reasonable amount of care, such as a driver failing to pay attention to the road when driving. Driver error is the most common mistake that causes car, bicycle and pedestrian accidents in Roswell and throughout the country. Drivers can cause serious car accidents with many careless and reckless acts, including:
- Distracted driving
- Texting and driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Speeding or racing
- Red-light running
- Rolling through stop signs
- Failing to yield the right-of-way
- Unsafe passing
- An inexperienced driver
- Breaking roadway rules
Other common causes of car accidents in Roswell are inclement weather, animals crossing, road hazards and automobile defects. For the most part, the person or party responsible for causing your automobile accident is financially responsible (liable) for your losses. This could be another driver, the government, a vehicle manufacturer or a combination of parties. You must determine the cause of your accident before you can file a claim, as New Mexico uses a fault insurance law. Identifying the cause of your car accident may take an in-depth investigation and help from an attorney.
Is New Mexico a Fault or No-Fault State?
New Mexico is a fault state. This means that its car insurance system places liability on the person or party at fault for causing the car accident. With a no-fault law, on the other hand, all injured parties seek benefits from their own car insurance providers, no matter who caused the crash. In a fault state, you must prove that the other driver (or a different party) did something negligent that caused your accident, such as texting and driving or speeding. In a no-fault state, you don’t have to prove fault, but the compensation available through personal injury protection insurance is often less.
It is mandatory for all drivers in New Mexico to carry at least minimum amounts of car insurance. This ensures that all drivers can pay for the car accidents that they cause. Currently, the required amounts of insurance are $25,000 in bodily injury liability insurance per person, $50,000 per accident and $10,000 in property damage insurance (a 25/50/10 system). After a car crash, if there is evidence that the other driver caused the accident, you will file a claim with his or her car insurance provider in pursuit of financial benefits.
If you get into a car accident with an uninsured driver or a hit-and-run crash, you may have to contact your own insurance company for coverage, since the at-fault driver’s insurance is not available. You may have the right type of insurance for benefits, such as uninsured or underinsured motorist, comprehensive, or collision coverage. If you don’t have the right type of insurance, consult with an attorney to find out if there is a third party you can hold responsible, such as the government in charge of roadway maintenance or your employer if you were driving for your job.
New Mexico’s Comparative Negligence Law
Not all car accident cases are black and white when it comes to fault. There are many circumstances where multiple parties share fault for a collision, such as both drivers. If you are found to be somewhat at fault for your car accident in New Mexico, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t recover financial compensation. New Mexico uses a comparative negligence statute, which states that a plaintiff can still recover partial compensation even if he or she contributed to an automobile accident.
New Mexico has a pure comparative negligence rule, meaning there is no cap on the amount of fault that will make a plaintiff eligible for compensation (short of 100 percent). However, the amount of fault for a car accident allocated to you as a claimant will reduce your financial recovery accordingly. If you are found to be 15 percent to blame for the accident, for example, your settlement or judgment award would be reduced by 15 percent. An attorney from The Fine Law Firm can help you minimize your percentage of fault to maximize your financial outcome as much as possible.
How to Deal With an Insurance Company After a Car Accident
Maximizing your financial recovery requires knowing at least the basics of how to deal with an insurance company. This is because car insurance companies place their profits over people. The agent assigned to your claim, known as an insurance claims adjuster, is trained to save the insurance company as much money as possible on your claim. This means you may encounter tactics such as the company wrongfully rejecting your claim or underestimating the value of your losses. Use the following tips to protect yourself while communicating with an insurance company after a car accident:
- Never admit fault for causing a car accident.
- When asked questions, answer with short responses.
- Don’t offer any information that is not requested.
- Don’t answer questions about your injuries until you’ve seen a doctor.
- If you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t be afraid to say that you don’t know.
- Politely decline when asked if you will give a recorded statement to the claims adjuster.
- Don’t sign anything given to you by the insurance company.
- Don’t rush into a fast settlement.
- Know that there is no “best” or “final” settlement offer, even if the insurer says there is.
- Hire an attorney to negotiate with a claims adjuster on your behalf.
An insurance company will immediately be more likely to handle your claim fairly and offer just financial compensation after realizing that you have hired an attorney with trial experience. Insurance providers want to avoid trials, as they can be time-consuming and expensive. If you hire a lawyer who can potentially take your car accident case to court, this alone can be enough to increase the settlement offers coming from an insurance company. A lawyer can take over communications with a claims adjuster so that you can focus on healing.
Compensation for Car Accident Claims
Compensation for a car accident depends on the severity of the victim’s injuries and their prospects for recovery. There are certain types of compensation regularly sought in car accident claims. These include the following:
- Medical bills, doctor appointments, and medications
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation
- Costs for future medical treatments
- Lost income
- Loss of future income
- Property damages
- Pain and suffering
- Mental and emotional trauma
The court may award punitive damages in cases of extremely reckless or wanton disregard on behalf of the at-fault party. Punitive damages are a means of punishing the at-fault party.
Is There a Time Limit on Filing a Claim?
Yes. Every state has a law known as a statute of limitations that places a deadline on the ability to file a claim with the civil courts. In New Mexico, this time limit is three years from the date that the car accident occurred, with only some exceptions. If your discovery of your injuries was delayed, such as a brain injury with delayed symptoms, the clock won’t start ticking until the date that you knew or reasonably should have known about your injury.
In some cases, the time limit is shorter. If you wish to file a lawsuit against the state or municipal government, for example, you only have two years from the date of your injury to bring your lawsuit in New Mexico. This is why it is important to consult with a car accident attorney in Roswell as soon as possible after your collision, before it’s too late. The courts are strict when it comes to enforcing statutes of limitations; you will generally give up the right to recover any financial compensation if you try to file your claim after the deadline has passed.
What to Do After a Car Accident
If you get injured in a car accident in Roswell, New Mexico, do your best to take certain steps in the aftermath of the collision. It is up to you to protect yourself, as the other driver, a car insurance company and even the police may not protect you or your legal rights. Set your car accident claim up for success by taking the following steps after your crash, if possible:
- Park in a safe location as close to the scene of the accident as possible.
- Look for injuries and call for paramedics, if necessary.
- Call the police to report the car accident.
- Swap information with the other driver.
- Take photographs while you are still at the scene.
- Talk to eyewitnesses and get their contact information.
- Write down your police report number before you leave.
- Get professional medical care for your injuries without delay.
- Call your car insurance company to start the claims process.
- Consult with a car accident attorney in Roswell for legal advice.
Whether or not you manage to complete all of these steps, contact our local lawyers for assistance with every step of the claims process after a car accident. The Fine Law Firm can take over your car accident claim in pursuit of a positive case outcome on your behalf. With us as your advocates, you won’t have to do anything except focus on healing after an accident.
Reach Out To Us Today
One of the New Mexico car accident attorneys at The Fine Law Firm will discuss any available types of compensation for your car accident claim. Secure your family’s health and future by calling our office today. Contact us by phone or fill out our convenient online form. If you cannot come to the office, one of our attorneys will travel to you.