Hickory Car Accident Lawyer

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Auto Accident Attorney in Hickory, NC

Car accidents happen every day in Hickory and across North Carolina, and these incidents occur for many reasons. As a fault state, North Carolina expects all drivers to purchase and maintain automobile insurance coverage. If your vehicle is damaged and you are injured in a car accident, insurance is typically the first step you must take toward recovering your losses, and the most effective way to do that is by hiring a trustworthy Hickory car accident lawyer.

Many people who are injured in a car accident assume that if they trust the insurance companies, they will get a fair settlement. However, this rarely happens. Insurance companies are looking out for their profits and the bottom line — they are not concerned with helping you recover from an accident.

Hickory Car Accident Lawyer — Auto Crash Law Firm NC

Even when an insurance claim is successful, the resulting claim payout may not be enough to fully compensate an injured driver’s losses. In this situation, the injured driver would have the right to pursue a personal injury claim against the driver who caused the accident. The attorneys at Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLChave years of experience representing Hickory, NC, clients in car accident claims. We are ready to put this experience and the full scope of our professional resources at your disposal in your car accident case.

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Why Do I Need a Hickory Car Accident Attorney?

If another driver is clearly to blame for your recent accident, do not make the mistake of assuming that holding them accountable for your losses will be a straightforward matter. Car accident claims can quickly escalate into very complex legal battles. Some claimants will struggle to obtain the compensation they deserve from at-fault drivers’ insurance carriers. Even when insurance claims are successful, they may have outstanding damages they do not know how to recover on their own.

A Hickory car accident attorney is an invaluable asset in these situations. When you have the right attorney representing you, you can approach the recovery process with greater peace of mind and confidence. In addition, your attorney can help you deal with complex insurance claim adjusters to secure the claim payout you deserve before assisting you in exploring your other options for legal recourse. Any personal injury claim can become a complex affair without the proper representation on your side, so it’s vital to speak with an experienced Hickory car accident lawyer as soon as possible after your accident.

Car Accidents And Insurance Companies

North Carolina is a “contributory negligence” state, which means if the insurance company can prove that you share the blame for the accident, they can deny all NCDOR compensation, and you will receive nothing. In many cases, the insurance company will try to make the accident your fault. Contacting a lawyer before your interview with the insurance adjuster is important so that you understand your rights.

Even though some people believe they can trust the insurance company to award them fair compensation after a car wreck, attorney Lyndon R. Helton knows differently. He worked for the insurance companies as an insurance defense lawyer in the past. He knows how insurance companies operate and knows your best interests aren’t always their top priority.

Recovering Damages For You Is Our Top Concern

At Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, you are never just a number. We make your injury claim a priority. We will make sure you receive fair and adequate compensation to cover:

  • Medical expenses for any serious or catastrophic injuries. Automobile insurance may cover some of your medical expenses, but you can only expect to receive compensation up to the at-fault driver’s bodily injury liability coverage limit. Any medical expenses beyond what insurance can cover are claimable in a personal injury suit. You can claim compensation for immediate medical expenses and long-term treatment costs from your accident.
  • Lost wages due to time away from work after a crash. A severe car crash can leave you injured and unable to work for an extended time. Your Hickory car accident lawyer will be instrumental in holding the at-fault driver accountable for your wages lost during this time. In addition, if you are entirely unable to return to work due to a catastrophic injury the other driver caused, your attorney can potentially help you recover compensation for the future earnings you would have reasonably expected to earn had your injury not occurred.
  • Compensation for the effect on your life and your family. Many personal injury claimants are surprised to learn their claims are worth more than they initially anticipated once they secure legal counsel. Your attorney can help you recover compensation for the full scope of your economic damages and pain and suffering compensation. The amount you can claim depends on the severity of your injury and whether you face long-term medical complications or disabilities due to the other driver’s actions.

If the car accident happened during the course of work, we could help you claim workers’ compensation benefits. If the collision caused you to suffer a permanent disability, we could help you apply for disability benefits as well. Navigating the workers’ compensation claim process or the disability benefits claim process is very difficult without legal counsel on your side.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in North Carolina

Car accidents can occur for several reasons. The determining factor as to whether you have grounds for a civil claim is another driver’s responsibility for causing your accident. If another driver was negligent, reckless, or intentionally harmful in any way that led to your crash, you have the right to seek accountability through a civil claim. Some of the most commonly reported causes of car accidents that lead to civil cases in North Carolina include:

  • Distracted driving. Distracted driving has been the top-cited cause of all vehicle accidents for many years throughout the US. When a driver uses their cell phone, eats while driving, or does anything that diverts their eyes from the road, their hands from their vehicle controls, or their attention from the task at hand, they put themselves and others at risk.
  • Drunk driving. North Carolina prosecutors pursue convictions for driving while intoxicated (DWI) very aggressively. As a result, a drunk driver who causes an accident will likely face criminal charges and civil liability for victims’ damages.
  • Posted speed limits are not suggestions. When drivers exceed speed limits, they significantly increase the risk of causing an accident. Driving at excessive speeds reduces the time and distance a driver has to slow down to avoid a collision, and accidents that happen at high speeds tend to result in severe and fatal injuries.
  • Traffic violations. Drivers must follow posted traffic signals and operate their vehicles safely. Illegal turns and U-turns, running red lights and stop signs, and other moving violations can easily result in accidents.
  • Aggressive driving. Unfortunately, many drivers struggle with “road rage” and can act aggressively toward other motorists when they become frustrated in traffic. Swerving, cutting off other drivers, weaving between slower-moving cars, and tailgating are just a few examples of aggressive driving that may result in accidents.
  • Vehicle malfunctions. Drivers must address mechanical issues with their vehicles when they discover them. If a driver leaves a problem with their vehicle unaddressed for too long, it could be an accident. For example, if a driver knew their brake light was damaged but did not replace it, this could result in an accident due to a driver behind them not realizing they were braking. It’s also possible for a vehicle manufacturer or parts manufacturer to face a product liability claim for a defective part that causes an accident.

Ultimately, any time one party’s actions result in an accident with another party, the injured party has the right to seek compensation through an auto insurance claim or personal injury claim in North Carolina. A Hickory car accident lawyer is the best resource to consult if you are unsure whether you have grounds for legal action after another driver has caused an accident with you.

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How to Prove Fault for a Car Accident in Hickory, NC

Due to the strict nature of North Carolina’s contributory negligence law, it is crucial to prove the other driver is entirely at fault for your recent accident if you want to succeed with your auto insurance claim or personal injury claim against them. Your Hickory car accident lawyer can help you gather the evidence you need to prove how your accident occurred and establish the other driver’s fault for the incident.

An experienced Hickory car accident lawyer can gather various types of evidence to support their client’s case. Traffic camera recordings are valuable if available, as are dashboard camera recordings, vehicle computer data, and cell phone records. For example, your attorney may need to secure the other driver’s cell phone record for the date your accident occurred to prove they were texting while driving or otherwise distracted by their phone.

Success with both your insurance claim and your personal injury claim hinges on affirming the other driver’s liability. While it’s common for at-fault drivers to accuse plaintiffs of contributory negligence, your Hickory car accident attorney can help you address such issues.

Most Common Injuries From Car Accidents

Vehicle accidents are a leading cause of accidental injuries and deaths throughout the United States. These incidents are easily capable of causing life-changing injuries, some of which result in permanent disabilities. A few of the most commonly reported car accident injuries in North Carolina are:

  • Broken bones, many of which will require extensive healing time and ongoing care to ensure a full recovery. Severe bone fractures may need surgical correction, and these injuries can lead to nerve damage, diminished range of motion, and chronic pain.
  • Internal injuries. Crash impact forces can easily harm the body’s internal organs, impairing their function or causing internal bleeding. These injuries require immediate treatment but sometimes do not cause immediately noticeable symptoms.
  • Traumatic brain injuries, which are some of the most severe injuries a person can sustain. Brain injuries are difficult to treat and commonly cause permanent complications for the victim. Even a seemingly mild brain injury can lead to extensive long-term medical issues for the victim.
  • Spinal injuries. The spinal cord carries brain signals throughout the body and allows conscious control over movement and bodily functions. Unfortunately, the spinal cord cannot heal itself when injured, so any damage is permanent and can lead to lifelong disability.
  • Facial and dental injuries. Some accidents can cause disfiguring and traumatic injuries to the face of the victim. These injuries are not only painful and require extensive emergency care but also cause devastating long-term psychological damage from disfigurement.

It’s also possible for the car accident victim to sustain minor burns, cuts, scrapes, and bruises. Seeking medical care promptly after any accident is crucial. The adrenaline rush that the experience is likely to generate can dull pain sensations, and someone may walk away from a crash thinking they weren’t injured at all, only to be unable to move out of bed the next day because they are in so much pain.

Important Steps After a Car Accident in North Carolina

Following a car accident, the first actions can significantly influence subsequent insurance claims and civil court proceedings. If you are seriously injured in an accident, you will likely have no choice but to wait for paramedics to arrive and transport you to the nearest hospital. However, if you only sustained minor injuries and feel well enough to move around safely, there are a few things you should remember to improve your chances of securing compensation for your losses:

  • North Carolina state law requires drivers to report accidents resulting in injuries, death, or significant property damage. If you are unsure whether you need to report your accident, it’s best to be on the safe side and report it. This ensures you fulfill your legal obligation and will not face a hit-and-run accusation or citation for failure to report the incident.
  • Check yourself and your passengers for injuries before checking on the occupants of the other vehicles involved in the crash. Then, when you call 911 to report the accident, mention whether anyone requires medical attention so emergency dispatchers can send an ambulance to your location.
  • If you can remain at the crash scene, the responding officers will perform an initial investigation and ask you questions. Answer these questions honestly but do not admit fault in any way. Even saying something as seemingly innocuous as “I’m sorry” can potentially translate to contributory negligence and cause you to lose your right to claim compensation.
  • The police will compile a police report of their findings, and once they have obtained the information they need, they will allow the drivers involved to leave and start clearing the accident scene. If you can do so safely, you should take photos or videos of the accident scene, capturing images of your injuries, the damage to your vehicle, and the placement of the vehicles on the road. These images could be vital to a subsequent insurance claim or personal injury case.
  • Do not speak with any insurance companies until you have secured legal representation. Your auto insurance policy may require you to report the accident within the first 24 hours to a few days after the crash, but do not discuss settlement or file a claim until you speak to an attorney. If you obtain the at-fault driver’s insurance information and plan to file a claim against their policy, you may need to report the accident to their insurer within a few days as well. However, you should only report the accident and notify them you intend to file a claim, but that you must consult your legal counsel before beginning the claim process.

Keeping these tips in mind can potentially make a significant difference in the outcome of the insurance claim and civil court proceedings likely to follow your accident. Once you have addressed your immediate medical concerns following your crash, the next step toward your recovery should be to speak with a Hickory car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC can offer the comprehensive legal representation you need in this situation.

Building a Car Accident Claim in Hickory

Every driver injured in an accident will face different challenges when it comes to gathering proof of fault, establishing the full extent of their losses, navigating the insurance claim filing process, and building a personal injury suit when insurance alone cannot compensate their losses. One of the most important things you can do to improve your chances of recovering from an accident is to contact a trustworthy attorney as soon as possible.

The first challenge you face is proving fault. Before you will be able to recover any kind of compensation for the damages you suffered, either through auto insurance or a personal injury claim, you must firmly establish liability for the accident. Additionally, you must be ready to disprove any allegations of shared fault; otherwise, the contributory negligence rule could prevent you from recovering compensation from the other driver.

Your Hickory car accident lawyer can assist you with these preliminary challenges, helping you gather the evidence needed to firmly establish liability for the accident and prove you did not contribute to causing it. An experienced legal team will know what evidence can be most crucial to your case and assist you with gathering the foundational elements of the claim. Once you have proven fault, you can proceed with filing your auto insurance claim.

Every driver in the state is required to have auto insurance, but this does not mean that insurance alone can cover all your damages or that dealing with an insurance company will be easy. Insurance claim adjusters typically look for any reason to deny a claim or justify the lowest possible settlement offer. However, they are less likely to attempt any bad faith tactics when they see that a claimant has legal representation.

After securing a settlement check from the at-fault driver’s auto insurance carrier, any outstanding damages their insurance cannot cover must be claimed with a personal injury suit. While it is technically possible to file your claim on your own, the right attorney can make this process much easier, and you will be more likely to reach a positive outcome with their assistance.

Settling a Claim Versus Litigation

Most of the civil claims for damages filed each year are resolved in private settlements rather than courtroom litigation. The settlement process allows all parties involved to resolve their claim quickly as long as they are willing to compromise. During settlement, the parties involved in the case meet privately to negotiate mutually acceptable terms, and this process typically requires a fraction of the time that litigation usually requires.

During settlement negotiations, the parties involved in the case will attempt to resolve the matter without needing to go to court. This is not always possible for all types of car accident claims, but it is always worth pursuing a settlement to avoid the time commitment, additional expense, and stress that litigation entails. The parties may meet in person, or they may have their attorneys act as proxies and negotiate on their behalf.

Unfortunately, settlement is not a viable option for every car accident case in Hickory. It’s possible for a defendant to deny liability or dispute the range of damages sought by the plaintiff. It is also possible for the parties to initially agree to a settlement but for settlement negotiations to fail for a number of reasons. In these situations, litigation is necessary for resolving the case.

The Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, can provide comprehensive legal support through all of your settlement negotiations, and we generally strive to settle our clients’ cases as swiftly as we can to reduce the time it takes for them to recover compensation. However, if litigation is necessary, you can rely on our team to defend you in the courtroom in Burke, Catawba, or Caldwell County.

Choosing the Right Legal Counsel for Your Car Accident Claim

If you experienced a very minor fender-bender, you may be able to resolve the situation on your own just through an auto insurance claim. However, if you were injured, you may be entitled to far more compensation than you initially realize. An experienced auto crash law firm in NC can be an invaluable asset in this situation.
The team at the Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, has a proven record of successful claims and has built a strong reputation as a leading choice for civil claim counsel in the Hickory area. We take the time necessary to get to know every client we represent, learning as much as we can about their unique legal concerns as they seek compensation for their losses.

Recovery from a car accident typically begins with an auto insurance claim, and an injured driver faces a very short time limit in which they must file this claim. When you have grounds for a personal injury suit, you also face a time limit in the form of a two-year statute of limitations. Do not assume this is more than enough time for you to file your case; it can take longer than you expect to compile the foundation of your claim and submit it to the court.

Most personal injury attorneys offer prospective clients free or low-cost consultations. Take advantage of these offers to get to know your options for legal counsel, and make sure to evaluate a potential attorney’s experience level, availability, and billing policy to help you make your decision. The sooner you secure legal counsel you can trust, the more likely you are to succeed with all your recovery efforts.

If you have concerns about the potential cost of hiring a Hickory car accident lawyer, the Law Office of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC, offers contingency fee billing to alleviate this concern. When you have a contingency fee agreement with your attorney, they only take a fee after they win your case, and your fee is a percentage of the total amount they recover for you. There is no fee if your attorney cannot obtain compensation for you.

Contact Our Hickory, NC Car Crash Attorneys Today

If you’ve suffered injuries in a car accident in NC, compensation can be difficult to recover if the insurance company does not have your best interests in mind. At our auto accident law firm, we want what’s best for you. We will fight for your right to compensation and will stand by you even through litigation.

To schedule a free initial consultation at our Hickory office, call 828-328-9966 or toll-free at 888-321-0494.

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Law Office Of Lyndon R. Helton, PLLC
827 Highland Avenue Northeast Hickory, NC 28601


Toll Free:888-321-0494

Mailing Address:PO Box 909 Hickory, NC 28603