Across the entirety of the United States, there are a staggering 200 million drivers on the roads. Knowing this number, it is easy to see why the most common forms of personal injury claims in Kansas City are from car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle accidents. Being involved in a car accident incident can be extraordinarily stressful, especially when it was through no fault of your own. You might be physically injured, facing rising medical bills and a lifelong change to your way of life. You will most likely be dealing with emotional and mental trauma or even the tragic loss of life of someone you love.
If you fall into these categories, you could be entitled to compensation for your damages and your losses, and we highly recommend that you get in touch with one of our skilled Kansas City car accident lawyers. We can explain your legal rights, give immediate advice and if you feel comfortable, arrange for a case evaluation. We have years of experience dealing with cases similar to yours and know exactly how to navigate the complexities of Kansas City and Missouri personal injury law.
We can take the weight from your shoulders, taking over paperwork, and speaking to the insurance company and third parties. We will also obtain police records, speak to witnesses and make sure that you have the space to focus on what is important, your recovery and health. Our team of experienced and knowledgable Kansas City auto accident attorneys has over 40 years of combined experience and is spearheaded by Samuel Wendt, one of the Top 50 Super Lawyers in Kansas City. This means you can rest easy knowing you are in the most capable of hands, hands that aren’t afraid to get dirty. We fight tooth and nail for our clients, and we won’t give up until you receive the fair and reasonable treatment you deserve following your accident.
We offer a free consultation, with no strings attached, so ring us today. We can offer immediate legal advice, and if you are comfortable, we can move forward with a case evaluation. Call us on 816-542-6734.
What To Do After A Car Accident In Kansas City
We hope that you are reading this article pre-emptively, but if you are at the scene of an accident, the following steps and tips are crucial if you want the best chances of a successful claim later on down the line.
Move To Safety – The first and most important thing to do if you are able is to move to safety. Move away from oncoming traffic and make sure you are no longer in further danger.
Call An Ambulance – Call an ambulance straight away. This serves two reasons. Firstly, they will treat you. Even if you feel you have no injuries, others might, and you may also be unaware of your own internal injuries. Secondly, the emergency services will write a report that can be used as strong, unbiased evidence later on in court.
Call The Police – Calling the police is another smart decision, they can help with drunken drivers, control the flow of traffic to keep everyone safe and they also create a police report which is useful later on.
Collect Evidence – If you are safe and able, and you have already called the emergency services, now is a good time to begin taking evidence. Take as many pictures as you can, write down as many details as you remember, and draw a simple sketch of how the accident happened, with you labeled A and the other parties B, C, etc.
Exchange Information and Witness Statements – The more details you get regarding witnesses, the better. Grab their phone numbers, and a brief statement if they are willing. You should also get the information of the other driver if they are being cooperative, if not, leave it to the police report.
Seek Medical Attention – If you didn’t get medical attention from the ambulance team, you should make your next priority a trip to the hospital for a brief checkup. This serves two purposes, the first is that if you have underlying injuries, they will be picked up. The second is that this will serve as your first recorded instance of medical attention.
Call Your Insurance Company – You should make sure your insurance company knows that you have been in an accident, but we highly advise you to tell them the bare minimum and inform them that your Kansas City auto car accident attorney will be dealing with all liaising on your behalf.
Hire A Kansas City Car Accident Lawyer – After you have made sure you are safe, and you have been checked over by a medical professional, now is the time to get in touch with your attorney if you have not already. They will be able to start investigating on your behalf and can begin building your case and liaising with the other parties. Choosing to contact a personal injury lawyer should be paramount if you were involved in any of the following scenarios:
The collision caused a serious or life-altering injury
The crash resulted in a fatality
Fault or liability cannot be determined
A pedestrian, bicyclist, motorist, or cyclist was involved in the collision
The scene of the crash was in a school zone, construction zone, or on government property
The police report is inaccurate or does not fully describe details of the collision
You have reservations or concerns regarding your insurance policy or insurance company
Investigating A Car Accident In Kansas City
If you agree to representation from Wendt Law Firm, we will conduct our own extensive investigation in order to help allocate liability. To do this, we will try to figure out who behaved in a negligent manner in the accident. To deduce this, we will try to work out the answers to these questions:
Was there anyone who witnessed the accident that could testify on your behalf?
Did you see the official report by the emergency services?
Did the other party violate any traffic law?
Did the other driver admit that they were at fault?
Was the driver under the influence of alcohol or drugs?
Proving Fault For A Car Accident In Kansas City
Proving negligence is one of the most important steps in any injury claim, to do this, we will need to establish:
Duty Of Care — The other driver had a responsibility to act in a reasonable way that any other road user would act. If not, they breached their duty of care to you.
Breach — The driver breached their duty of care by operating their motor vehicle in a negligent manner or violating one of the traffic laws.
Causation — You sustained car accident injuries as a result of the other party breaching their duty of care.
Damages — All of the damages you suffered as a result.
What Are Some Common Causes of Accidents for Kansas City Car Drivers?
There are numerous reasons why people might crash their vehicle and cause an accident. A list of causes commonly seen by our Kansas City car accident lawyers include:
Extreme and harsh weather conditions, like wind, snow, and ice.
Cars malfunctioning or failing after shoddy repairs.
Speeding or reckless driving.
Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Driving while distracted, which can include eating at the wheel, using a mobile phone, or arguing with passengers.
Drivers who are learning or are new to the roads.
Potholes, or poorly maintained roads and signage.
What Kind of Injuries Are the Common Result of Kansas City Auto Accidents?
With a wide range of potential causes, there is also a wide range of potential injuries that we see in car accident cases on a daily basis. Injuries can range from minor to major but the most common are:
Cuts, lacerations, bruises, and other abrasions to the skin.
Tissue damage or bleeding internally.
Broken or fractured bones.
TBIs (Traumatic Brain Injury), head lacerations, and concussions – TBIs are particularly dangerous and can result in lifelong impairments like disabilities and brain damage.
Whiplash, neck injuries, and other injuries to the spinal cord.
Scarring and disfigurement.
If you have injuries from the list above following a car accident, it is extremely likely that you are entitled to seek compensation, especially if the accident wasn’t your fault. Nobody deserves to receive injuries like these through no fault of their own. If you need more information or want to discuss your injuries with us, give us a call today. We can evaluate your case and advise you on the best course of action. For more information, questions, or an evaluation of the worth of your claim, get in contact with our legal team today. We have the tenacity, experience, and knowledge to fight for the best possible outcomes for our clients.
Common Types Of Car Accidents In Kansas City
There are many different types of car accidents, but the most common types of cases that we see here at Wendt Law Firm are:
Side-Impact Crashes – Side-impact crashes, commonly known as “T-Bone” crashes occur when a vehicle hits another vehicle side-on, in the shape of a T.
Rear-End Crashes – Rear-end accidents occur when a vehicle hits another from behind. They can cause serious whiplash and neck injuries.
Head-On Crashes – This type of accident has the highest chance of fatality and happens when two cars impact head-on, often at a high speed.
Multi-Vehicle Crashes – Multi-vehicle accidents involve more than 2 vehicles.
Pedestrian Collision – This happens when a road user hits a pedestrian who is not inside another vehicle.
What Different Types of Compensation Are Available to Me Following a Kansas City Car Accident?
Following any car accident in Kansas City, there are numerous consequences that you might have to face. These damages could be physical, financial, or emotional. These damages, in all of their forms, can quickly lead to a feeling of being overwhelmed and helpless, Luckily, this is where the help of a skilled and experienced Kansas City car accident lawyer can prove their worth.
Claiming for Medical Bills in Kansas City
Health care in America is expensive, there’s no way about it. This means that medical bills following an accident can quickly add up, even with good levels of insurance in place. Fortunately, if the accident wasn’t your fault, you should in no way be expected to pay for your bills. A skilled personal injury lawyer will be able to seek medical bills as part of your damages. This applies to all past, present, and future medical bills that you have incurred as a result of the accident.
Remember, insurance companies will always try to reduce their liability and obligations. This is one of the reasons why it is crucial you keep every single scrap of evidence surrounding your medical bills. Keep every receipt, note down every taxi to the hospital, everything is claimable. It can also be a good idea to take photo evidence of your injuries throughout the entire recovery process.
Claiming for Income Lost Due to the Recovery Process Following Your Kansas City Car Accident
If you have had to take time off from work, or you will have to take time off in the future, you shouldn’t be out of pocket for lost wages. Your Kansas City car accident lawyers will be able to calculate your loss of earnings and will be able to seek compensation for your losses. In terms of future earnings, if your injury means you will never be able to work in the same job again, your car accident lawyer will calculate what that looks like and use it in your settlement offer. Just like with your medical bills, the more evidence, and correspondence that you have, the better. So make sure you keep all emails and texts from your bosses and employers.
Claiming for Pain and Suffering in Kansas City
Pain and suffering is a term that encompasses a range of different things and is a term used to describe the physical pain and trauma of a victim. This allows car accident lawyers to put a figure on things that are more intangible, like emotional suffering and the loss of enjoyment of life. If your injury has meant that you cannot do everyday tasks you used to, like exercising, playing sports, changing diapers, or driving, your lawyer will be able to put a figure to that suffering and will be able to claim compensation on your behalf.
If you arent sure what classes as pain and suffering, here are some common examples:
Anxiety around cars/roads.
Claiming for Property Damage in Kansas City
It isn’t just injuries and emotional trauma that you are entitled to claim for either. If any of your property has been damaged as a result of an accident that wasn’t your fault, you are entitled to claim for the costs to replace it. Primarily, this usually applies to any damage don’t to your vehicle and any personal valuables that were damaged in the crash.
Claiming for the Loss of a Loved One in Kansas City
Loss of life is the worst possible outcome following any car accident. Not only will you be dealing with terrible emotional trauma but you may also have the added stress of finding funeral costs. When loss of life is the result of somebody’s negligence, you not only deserve compensation, you deserve justice, and we will do everything in our power to ensure you receive it.
It is crucial that you seek the help of a Kansas City car accident lawyer for any car accident claims that involve wrongful death. These cases are a lot more serious and a lot more complicated and you will need someone well versed in the law to seek the full and most reasonable compensation that you deserve following your loss. Here at Wendt Law Firm, we know that no amount of money will ever repair the damage done and the terrible trauma involved in losing someone close to you. The main aim of a wrongful death suit is to remove any financial stress and allow you room to mourn your loved one.
Is it Worth Hiring a Kansas City Auto Accident Attorney?
There arent many situations as scary and stressful as a car accident. The stresses quickly add up, medical bills start flooding in, all while you are in a state of shock and trauma. In this frame of mind, you shouldn’t be worrying about building a case and learning every scrap of state law, you should be focusing on your recovery and mental health. During this vulnerable time, you not only have injury and trauma to deal with but the insurance companies involved will also be trying to devalue your car accident claim and reduce their liability. They have aggressive and sneaky teams of lawyers who are hired for that specific role and they may come with underhanded tricks.
When you seek the help of a skilled Kansas City auto accident attorney from the earliest possible moment, you are protecting yourself. We will talk to the insurance companies, we will build your case and we will use the advanced tools at our disposal to investigate. We know the laws, inside and out, and will be able to seek the maximum compensation possible. Besides your health, hiring a Kansas City auto accident law firm will result in a higher payout overall in the majority of claims, even after we have taken our fees from the settlement.
Dealing With Insurance Companies
As we have already touched upon, insurance companies are behemoths. They didn’t get to be the size they are now by giving up lots of money in the past. This means they know all the tricks in the book for reducing their liability and devaluing your claim. If you are called by either party’s insurance company at any point, make sure you tell them your insurance litigation lawyer will be liaising on your behalf. Claims adjusters may seem cheerful and happy on the phone, but they may ask to record the conversation and use your answers to reduce their liability.
In any personal injury or auto accident case where there are insurance companies involved, we highly recommend taking advantage of the free consultation that we offer at Wendt Law Firm. A car accident case may take a long time to settle and without an attorney to represent you, you could be dealing with insurance companies for months, even years to come. Let us do the fighting for you.
What Will Your Kansas City Auto Accident Attorney Do For You?
When you contact Wendt Law Firm, first, you will receive a free consultation. During this call or meeting, we will discuss your case and give you some immediate advice. If you feel comfortable with us and want to move forward with your claim, we will arrange a more formal consultation. During this consultation, we will tell you exactly what we can do for you and what you can expect. We will also layout our fee structure in a crystal clear way. We pride ourselves on our transparency and always strive to have an honest open relationship with our clients.
At this point, you can make a decision on whether or not you want representation from us. If you don’t, that’s perfectly okay, at least you will be leaving with more knowledge than when you entered, which is enough for us. Once we have explained the importance of hiring an attorney after an auto accident though, most people decide to proceed with the representation.
What Happens Once You Say Yes to Representation?
If you decide you want representation from us, we will start immediately. We will use all of the evidence you can provide us and use our own resources and investigators to begin preparing an air-tight case. We will also advise you on what to do next, what to say, and what not to say. From this point we take over all paperwork and liaising, taking the burden from you. As your representation in your car accident claim, our job is to protect you from anyone who is trying to influence you. This includes both your and the third-party insurance adjusters.
Most importantly, we will also protect you from yourself. We will try to stop you from making any hasty decisions that may impact your case. We are not emotionally involved with the case, which makes us the perfect voice of reason. We will give you the clearest, unbiased advice we possibly can, based upon the experience we have regarding the law and previous cases.
Should I Hire a Car Accident Attorney After Minor Car Accidents?
It doesn’t matter how minor your accident was, seeking the help of a skilled personal injury attorney will always be the smartest move. Even if you decide not to proceed with their representation, you can still listen to their advice. Sometimes injuries can seem minor and can end up being severe. Internal bleeding often goes unnoticed without professional help but can lead to brain damage and even death if left unchecked. If you do not seek help early, your chances of claiming for these injuries become less and less the longer time goes on.
Who Can Be Held Liable After a Car Accident in Kansas City?
Liability refers to a person’s responsibility for a victim’s damages due to fault for the car wreck. The laws surrounding liability and fault change from state to state. In Missouri, fault laws preside over car accident claims, meaning all parties involved in the crash must determine who is at fault and file their insurance claims with the at-fault party’s insurance provider. Kansas, on the other hand, is a no-fault state, meaning all parties will seek recovery from their insurance companies. The liable party could be the other driver or several possible defendants.
The most common defendant in a motor vehicle accident claim is the other driver. Another driver could absorb liability for damages if he or she was guilty of driver drowsiness, distraction, negligence, carelessness, or recklessness that caused the wreck. Proving another driver’s liability may take re-creating the accident, hiring crash experts, and interviewing eyewitnesses.
A Third Party
A third party is someone not directly involved in the accident, but potentially responsible due to the rules of vicarious liability. For example, a minor’s parents could be vicariously liable for the actions of the minor. Third parties that could be responsible include employers, auto mechanics, and dram shops for drunk driving accidents.
A Car Part Manufacturer
A manufacturer or part distributor could be responsible for an accident if one or both of the vehicles involved contained a defect that contributed to the collision. Common defective parts include tires, airbags, seat belts, and brakes. If a defective auto part caused the wreck, the manufacturer could be liable.
Kansas City Government
A victim may be able to hold the government liable if a roadway defect contributed to the crash. A poorly designed roadway or parking lot, malfunctioning traffic lights, poor roadway maintenance, low visibility due to overgrown shrubs, potholes, road debris, and unsafe construction zones are all examples of defects that would fall under the city’s jurisdiction.
Many car accident claims involve shared fault among multiple parties. In these cases, choosing to hire a car accident lawyer in Kansas City can lead to better compensation by enabling you to choose the best defendant to hold responsible for payment. The rule of joint and liability states that more than one party could share fault between them. The victim may then seek damages from one of the at-fault parties, and then that party will file claims against the other defendants for reimbursement. Knowing which defendant is most likely to have the money to pay a settlement or verdict is something with which an attorney could help.
What if I am the At-Fault Driver?
If you were the at-fault driver then it no longer becomes a suggestion. You really should speak to a personal injury attorney as soon after your auto accident as possible. The best way to defend yourself is to seek reputable help and put forward a strong argument. Having a car accident attorney by your side whilst you do this will show that you are taking things seriously.
How Much Should You Expect From a Car Accident Settlement?
A frequently asked question during a car accident claim is, “How much is my case worth?” The answer to this question is important for your future. If you have recently suffered injuries in an auto accident, the amount of money your car collision lawyer could potentially recover on your behalf might change your life. You may be able to obtain the financial recovery to pay for your lost income from missing work, mounting medical bills, and expensive vehicle repairs.
An average car accident settlement amount does not exist in Kansas City. The results of a car accident case can vary considerably on a case-by-case basis. The answer will depend on the seriousness of your injuries and the costs of losses. For an idea of what your case could be worth, add up your economic damages such as medical bills and vehicle repairs. Then, multiply this number by three. This is the amount your car insurance company may be willing to pay to resolve your claim.
You have better odds of obtaining a full and fair financial recovery, no matter your situation, with help from a Kansas City accident attorney. A lawyer with years of experience handling car crash claims can go up against an insurance corporation on your behalf. Your lawyer will negotiate aggressively with insurance adjusters to ensure a fair amount. Hiring a lawyer could help you maximize your settlement award in Missouri.
How Much Do Lawyers Take From the Settlement?
Here at Wendt Law Firm, our personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. A contingency fee basis is commonly known as a no-win-no-fee. This means that we only take our fees from a winning settlement. If we do not win your case, you don’t have to payout.
Qualities of a Reputable Kansas City Car Accident Lawyer
There are hundreds of car accident lawyers in Kansas City who deal with car accidents and car accident injuries. Some of them are great, some of them are not. While we believe we are the best firm around, and our clients do too, we respect that you need to do your own research. In order to do this, here is what we think you should look out for in a good auto accident case lawyer:
Never judge a law firm solely on its ability to market. We have all seen the flashy ads and the billboards but the best possible trust signal in our opinion is a firm’s reviews and recommendations. This should come from word of mouth, independent review sites, or accredited sites. If a firm is unwilling to provide recommendations and positive reviews, you might want to stay clear.
Free Case Reviews and Consultations
A good law firm will be willing to evaluate your case for free. This is where they showcase their confidence and make you feel at ease. This case could go on for a long time and you need to feel comfortable around your Kansas City car accident attorney. In your free consultation, you should expect lots of good questions and the space to ask as many of your own as you need to.
Working on a Contingency Basis
A good law firm knows they are strong enough to win cases. These firms usually offer free consultations and free case evaluations and work on a contingency basis because they are confident in their ability. You also have the added benefit of knowing your attorney is committed to the case 100% as they will not get paid unless you win.
Contact Wendt Law Firm Today!
At Wendt Law Firm, our Kansas City car accident attorneys have the experience, skill, and knowledge necessary to win any case. We know that any money you receive won’t fix the situation or the trauma you may still be living through, but it will help you with any financial strains you may be facing and will serve as proof that some form of justice has been carried out on your behalf.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with a Kansas City auto accident attorney who is highly skilled and has experience with all kinds of personal injury cases.
Don’t hesitate; contact Wendt Law Firm today to schedule a free consultation. Call us now at 816-542-6734