Following a motor vehicle accident, there is a whole list of things to take care of – from phone calls, over paper work, searching for a lawyer, and so on. A question that will probably pop up sooner in your head, rather than later, is how this accident will affect your insurance rates.
Accidents without Serious Injury
If you haven’t been injured beyond a few scratches, you will be looking at a much simpler case, since all you will need to take care of is the repair work for your car, as well as the vehicles of other involved parties. Who exactly will need to cover these costs will be based on who is found liable for causing the accident in the first place.
On the foundation of witness statements, police reports, speed, weather conditions, and the severity of the damage done to involved vehicles, the sequence of events will be put together to determine who caused the accident. What this oftentimes leads to is split blame, in which it has been found that no party is fully at fault, but rather that all involved parties ultimately contributed to the collision. However, if you are found to be at no fault, your auto insurance rates will most likely not be negatively affected at all.
Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Damages
If you have been injured in a car accident, you had no part in causing, you are in a position in which you, or your family, can sue the other driver who has been found liable. The damages you can sue for are either pecuniary or non-pecuniary. However, if you plan on suing for pain and suffering, you will first need to gather evidence, including medical records, which prove you sustained serious injuries during the accident.
In Ontario, the at-fault driver will be represented by their insurance company, which for you as the party suing means that you and your lawyer will be confronted by them instead of the driver. And since you had no part in causing the accident, your Personal Injury Lawyer in Hamilton can also sue for compensation beyond the basic insurance coverage you are already entitled to.
In most cases, settlement will be reached outside of court, whether it be through negotiation between the lawyers, arbitration, or mediation. A good personal injury lawyer will be familiar with each of these systems and know which will be the best way to settle your case. However, when it comes to cases which involve neither serious injury, nor death, the entire process of compensation will be dealt with through your insurance company without the involvement of a lawsuit.