Car Accident Lawyers
HELPING CAR ACCIDENT VICTIMS IN AND AROUND KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI RECOVER MONETARY COMPENSATION FOR THEIR INJURIES
Car accidents are a leading cause of injury and death in the United States. Every year, tens of thousands of people are killed and millions more are injured in car crashes. If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident, you may be feeling overwhelmed and uncertain about what to do next. The whole process can be stressful and confusing, so it's crucial to have a car accident lawyer on your side.
At the Montee Law Firm, we understand the challenges you're facing, and we're here to help. We'll handle all the paperwork and correspondence with insurance companies and work to get you the best possible settlement. We'll also be there to answer any questions and help you understand the legal system. So if you've been in an accident, don't hesitate to call us for help. We can be reached at (816) 364-1650 to schedule a free, confidential review of your case.
MISSOURI IS HOME TO MANY CAR ACCIDENTS
In 2019, there were 3,176 car accidents in St. Joseph, Missouri. Of these accidents, 1,118 resulted in injuries and 33 resulted in fatalities. This means that nearly one-third of all car accidents in St. Joseph resulted in injuries or deaths. Unsurprisingly, most accidents (87 percent) occurred during daylight hours. The most common type of accident is rear-end collisions, followed by sideswipes and T-bone crashes. Most accidents occurred on weekdays, with Friday being the most dangerous day on the roads. Not surprisingly, the months with the most casualties were June, July and August.
CAUSES OF CAR ACCIDENTS
Car accidents are caused by a variety of factors, including speeding, distracted and impaired driving. Speeding is one of the most common causes of car accidents, as it increases the distance it takes to stop and makes it more difficult to avoid obstacles in the road. Distracted driving such as texting or playing with a GPS system can also lead to car accidents. Impaired driving, whether due to alcohol or drugs, can increase the risk of car accidents. In addition to these main causes, bad weather conditions and poorly maintained roads contribute to car accidents. By understanding the main causes of car accidents, drivers can take steps to reduce their risk.
CAR ACCIDENT CASE TYPES
No case is exactly like another when dealing with a car accident. Our injury lawyers are ready to help you through any of the following:
- Truck accidents: One type of accident that is particularly dangerous is a collision with a truck or commercial vehicle. These vehicles are often much larger and heavier than passenger cars, and they can cause serious damage.
- Motorcycle accidents: Motorcycle accidents are also very dangerous, as riders are unprotected and can be seriously injured if they are hit by a passenger vehicle.
- Uber and Lyft accidents: These rideshare programs have become increasingly popular in recent years, but they have also been involved in many accidents. Drivers are required to carry coverage; in some instances, the company policy kicks in.
- Passenger vehicles involved in a bus accident: City and commercial carriers are liable for passenger vehicle accidents. Because of the size and weight, the occupants of the smaller car or light truck are in danger.
- Crashes involving a walker: Pedestrian accidents often result in serious injuries or even deaths, as walkers have no protection from the impact of a collision. Speed is an important factor in a pedestrian accident since a vehicle traveling at a higher rate cannot stop in time to avoid a crosswalk or other walker-involved collision. Also, higher speeds result in greater injury to the pedestrian or are fatal.
- Rental cars: The rental company may be liable for damages in case of an accident involving one of their vehicles. However, an attorney might need to prove that the vehicle was responsible for the crash either because it was defective or not maintained.
- Hit-and-run accidents: The number of hit-and-run crashes has escalated over the past decade, and they often prove to be frustrating and challenging to resolve. The Montee Law Firm does everything it can to assist in finding the perpetrator. Liability insurance covers medical costs and other damages if a hit-and-run driver hits you driver. In addition, your uninsured motorist protection might cover your bodily injuries even if the fleeing driver is never found.
- Rollover accidents: Rollover collisions are very dangerous, as the roof of the car can collapse on the occupants inside. A common cause of this type of accident typically occurs when a vehicle takes a sharp turn at high speed or hits an obstacle in the road. SUVs are particularly susceptible to rollover accidents due to their higher center of gravity.
- Texting and driving accidents: Using a cell phone has become one of the leading causes of car accidents in recent years, as motorists who are distracted by texting or talking are more likely to swerve into oncoming traffic or fail to brake in time.
- Rear-end accidents: This is the number one type of accident on the road today. It often occurs when one driver is following another too closely and fails to brake in time. In many cases, it might look like a fender bender but can lead to neck problems that linger.
HOW A CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER CAN HELP
A car accident can be a traumatic event, and dealing with the aftermath is often complicated and time-consuming. If you've been in an accident, you may be wondering how a car accident lawyer can help.
- Obtain evidence – We'll dispatch investigators to the scene of the accident. We’ll review all video footage taken from surveillance cameras on traffic lights and adjacent businesses. If the owner of the video refuses to turn it over, we will subpoena the results. We’ll follow up on any 911 calls made by bystanders and witnesses to the crash. Our lawyers will depose all drivers, passengers and witnesses under oath. Our investigators will review the police report carefully, looking for errors or omissions.
- Accident reconstruction and liability: Our investigators will use crash reconstruction techniques to determine liability.
- Contact the insurance company: We will contact the client’s insurance company, report the accident and alert them that we will be available to answer any questions they may have.
- Damage determination: Our lawyers and staff will determine damages incurred in the accident. This includes:
- Wage loss: The inability to work can cause the victim and their family financial insecurity and worry. We analyze loss of income to include wages, benefits, job perks and others such as commissions. Those who own their business or are freelancers can also be considered for income loss using tax returns, client demands and other factors.
- Medical expenses: Our team will gather information about all medical costs including:
- Hospital bills
- Physician and surgeon fees
- Assistive devices such as wheelchairs
- Modifications made to the home to accommodate disability linked to the accident
- Rehabilitation therapy
- Travel expenses to and from medical offices, labs, rehabilitation and other destinations
- Emergency room costs, including X-rays, CT and MRI studies, EKG and others
- Ambulance service from the accident site to the hospital
- Recurring medical visits, including specialists
- Medical liens: A medical lien is placed by the hospital or doctor who receives payment from the personal injury settlement
- Accident reconstruction: Our investigators will use crash reconstruction techniques to determine liability for damages
Once this phase is finished, our legal team will build a strong argument against the at-fault party. Our lawyers are as comfortable at the negotiation table as they are in the courtroom. If a fair settlement cannot be reached, we will bring the matter to court.
NO COST TO OUR CLIENTS
Because we work on a contingency basis, our clients pay us nothing unless we win their case. This is important for clients who are more than likely suffering a significant financial strain. In some cases, the idea that they will have to pay upfront makes many people refrain from filing a lawsuit against an at-fault party.
At the Montee Law Firm, we know that insurers can often be unkind and worried more about their bottom line than helping injured people. We know the tricks they pull so that loyal policy holders will get less than they deserve.
For instance, one such trick is trying to get their customer to accept an inadequate payout. Since bills continue to arrive and many people are out of work due to a negligent person or entity, the insurer offers to pay much less than the damages will end up costing.
The problem here is that if the injured party accepts that offer, the insurer will ask that they sign a waiver saying that they will never file another claim against them for the same accident. Many times, injuries develop slowly, and additional care is needed to return the person to maximum health. If this happens and the waiver is signed, the policy holder cannot ask for more money and are on their own. With the cost of health care today, this can mean they will have to pay an enormous medical bill out-of-pocket.
INJURIES IN A CAR ACCIDENT
At any given time, a significant number of car accident victims are dealing with some form of injury. And while some injuries are relatively mild and will heal with time, others can be much more serious, resulting in long-term pain, disability and even death. Here are the most common injuries:
- Traumatic brain injuries: TBIs are often caused by car accidents and can lead to permanent cognitive problems. Victims and their families must deal with physical impairment as well as the loss of employment and other difficulties.
- Chest trauma: This is often due to impact with the steering wheel of other objects in the vehicle. It can result in lung and heart injuries that can be fatal.
- Back pain: Injuries to the vertebrae can result in a slipped disk. This can be disabling as the cushion between the vertebrae is gone and not only do the vertebra rub against one another but also the nerve that exits the spinal cord at the level of injury.
- Broken bones: Fractures can occur anywhere in the body. Some fractures heal quickly with casting. In other more complex cases, the bones must be fastened with screws or plates to encourage healing. Femur and hip fractures are frequently due to a T-bone crash.
- Neck injuries: one of the most common neck injuries is due to cervical trauma and is also called whiplash. This injury is caused by the rapid back and forth movement of the head and upper body, usually after a rear-end collision.
- Emotional and psychological pain: Physical trauma is not the only pain that erupts after an accident. Emotional and psychological pain does too. This can result in anxiety, depression, fear and insomnia as well as post-traumatic stress disorder. These problems often require professional help to resolve, and the cost should be included in the damages.
- Shoulder injuries: Dislocated shoulders are common in an accident. Besides being painful, they must be treated by a medical professional. Sometimes, surgery is needed to repair tears and other injuries as well as rehabilitation.
- Scars: These can be disfiguring and cause a good deal of mental trauma. Part of the problem is that insurance does not ordinarily cover the cost of cosmetic surgery. So, it is necessary to file a claim against the negligent party or their insurance to pay the cost.
- Restraint trauma and defects: On occasion, the seatbelts do not hold and let go at the point of impact. This can lead to abdominal trauma. Seat belts can also cause bruising and internal trauma.
- Airbag defects: A good example of airbag defects is found in the lawsuit against Takata. In this case, metal shards were released upon inflation, injuring the vehicles’ occupants.
- Abdominal trauma: When the abdomen impacts with the steering wheel, injury to the internal organs can occur. This can cause bleeding into the abdomen or rupture of the intestines. Rupture can lead to sepsis as the contents spill out into the cavity. Surgery and lavage as well as antibiotics are needed to prevent unnecessary death.
- Knee injury: Because few vehicles have knee air bags, they can hit the dash with a good deal of force. Fractures leading to complicated surgery can result.
A LAW FIRM WITH THE EXPERIENCE YOU NEED
The lawyers at the Montee Law Firm have the experience, tenacity and legal acumen that you need when you are in a car accident. Call us at (816) 364-1650, or reach out to us online to set up a free case review. We will examine your accident, answer your questions and give you your options going forward. Don’t try to go it alone.
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No fee until we collect for you.
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