Columbus Car Accident Lawyers
Do I Need a Columbus Car Accident Lawyer?
If you’ve been in a wreck, you’re not alone. Our Columbus car accident lawyers at GBM Law are here to help.
Sydney McLafferty, one of GBM Law’s experienced Columbus personal injury lawyers, answers common questions about what you should do if you’ve been injured in a car accident.
Get the information you need to determine if you have a personal injury case after a car accident. Learn how to proceed with insurance companies and your medical treatment after being injured in a car accident. Understand what type of claims you can be compensated for after a car wreck. Discover why you should call GBM Law, a Columbus and State of Ohio law firm, after a car accident.
FAQ Video Guide
- The required information you need to determine if you or someone you know has a personal injury case after being in a car accident. (1:22)
- Advice on how to proceed with insurance companies after you’ve been in a car accident. (2:11)
- How should you proceed with your medical treatment after being injured in a car accident? (3:01)
- What type of claims can you be compensated for after being injured in a car wreck? (3:48)
- Why you should you call GBM Law after a car accident. (4:27)
The Reality of Car Accidents in Ohio
Collisions occur every single day in Ohio. The Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSHP) investigates an average of over 60,000 vehicle accidents in Ohio each year, with nearly 1,100 accidents resulting in fatalities.
The OSHP Crash Dashboard reports the following injury statistics for Ohio car crashes in 2022:
- 6,150 suspected serious injuries
- 33,401 suspected minor injuries
- 26,273 possible injuries
When added up, these numbers make a combined total of 65,824 potential injuries in car crashes across the state of Ohio.
At GBM Law, we understand that accidents are common. That does not mean they are easy to deal with.
If you’re involved in a car accident, you have one opportunity to recover compensation in a personal injury claim (or wrongful death claim if a family member passed away). The opportunity to negotiate a settlement will likely come at a painstaking time as you recover from injuries, help a loved one recover, or grieve a devastating loss.
During this difficult time, you should have an experienced car accident attorney at your side.
Why Should I Hire an Experienced Columbus Car Accident Lawyer?
Car accidents are stressful events for all of us, but for insurance companies, they are business transactions. Their goal is to negotiate a settlement and pay out as little as possible in damages. To an insurance company, you are literally just a number; a claim number.
Insurance companies have multiple tactics for challenging insurance claims. Their seemingly compassionate claims adjusters who attempt to befriend accident victims are trained to convince victims they are on their side while getting them to downplay and minimize their injuries, and ultimately accept as small of a claim settlement as possible.
Fortunately, a skilled and knowledgeable lawyer can help level the playing field. At GBM Law, our Columbus car accident lawyers can advocate for your rights to recover compensation and the value of your case.
How Our Columbus Car Accident Lawyers Can Help Investigate Accidents
When it comes to investigating the cause of a car accident, the experienced attorneys at GBM Law order the police report (also known as an accident report or a crash report) and immediately get to work on calling and getting sworn statements from important witnesses to secure testimony beneficial to our clients.
If we cannot find witnesses on the crash report, the attorneys at GBM Law will go the extra mile and order all 911 calls which often leads to witnesses not listed on crash reports. If that doesn’t work, GBM Law has experienced private investigators who will track down important witnesses.
Sometimes, even with witnesses, it is difficult to determine the cause of a car crash due to the stress and trauma experienced by car crash victims and witnesses.
If this is the case, the attorneys at GBM Law will retain accident reconstructionists who are licensed engineers who specialize in reviewing evidence such as crash scene photographs, the damage to the vehicles involved, and witness statements to determine what happened.
When it comes to the injuries caused by car crashes, we work with an injured person’s doctors to gather medical records and medical bills. We then work with the accident victim’s doctors to draft reports that establish the seriousness of your injuries and treatment expenses.
If an injury is permanent, the attorneys at GBM Law will work with those doctors to come up with a future treatment plan that covers future medical expenses.
If a car accident victim’s doctors are not willing to aid in the case, the attorneys at GBM Law have several medical experts we work with who can review all of the medical records, medical bills, and medical literature to draft medical reports establishing the seriousness of injuries and future care.
If someone’s injuries are so serious that they not only lose their job but can not return to work, the attorneys at GBM Law work with vocational experts and economists to establish not only past lost wages, but future lost wages as well.
Our goal is always to make the process as simple as possible for our clients while working hard to recover full and fair compensation.
Causes of Columbus Car Accidents
The number one cause of car accidents nationwide is distracted driving.
Using a smartphone or tablet to call, text, or use apps can be a huge distraction, leading to collisions when drivers take their eyes off the road for too long.
Other common distractions include putting on makeup, reaching for an object, eating, drinking, smoking, or vaping.
Following distracted driving, the top causes of Columbus car accidents include:
- Driving under the influence (DUI)
- Reckless driving
Less common causes of Columbus car accidents can include roadway maintenance or mechanical defects.
When these are contributing factors to a collision, the police or highway patrol may not report this in their initial investigation report. If you suspect a roadway defect, vehicle design flaw, manufacturing defect, or improper maintenance caused an accident, talk to one of GBM Law’s experienced Columbus car accident attorneys right away.
What Kinds of Car Accident Injuries Occur in Columbus?
Even with seatbelts and modern safety technology, car accidents cause very serious injuries. Common types of car accident injuries include:
- Neck pain
- Back pain
- Bruises, cuts, and lacerations
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries and/or concussions
- Spinal cord injuries
Seeking prompt medical attention is important following an accident, both for your care and treatment as well as for documenting the severity of your injuries. Although you may feel okay or just have slight neck or head pain, it is possible that your injuries may be more severe than you realize.
Do not sign any documents from your insurance company or provide a recorded statement to your attorney without talking to one of our Columbus car accident lawyers first.
There is no law requiring you to give a statement, recorded or not, to your insurance company following an accident.
Our Accident Lawyers Can Help With These Types of Car Accidents Cases
- Automobile accidents
- Accidents involving trucks and big rigs
- Accidents involving bicycles
- Accidents involving school buses
- Accidents involving motorcycles
- Accidents involving drunk drivers
How Long Do I Have to File a Car Accident Claim in Columbus, Ohio?
Ohio, like every state, has a statute of limitations, or a deadline, for filing a lawsuit. In a personal injury case, this is a specific period of time to file a lawsuit following an accident. In Ohio, the typical claim stems out of the driver’s negligence, so the period of time is two years.
If more than two years pass after your accident, it is unlikely that you will be able to collect damages for your injuries.
In the immediate days and weeks following an accident, it will be easiest to preserve evidence and witness recollections.
Don’t Wait — Contact a Columbus Car Accident Lawyer Today
GBM Law has helped Columbus car accident victims in a wide variety of situations and circumstances receive full and fair compensation, regardless of the causes of the crash or types of injuries.
Our Columbus auto accident attorneys are happy to answer your questions and discuss your case. We’ve handled cases for over 40 years and recovered more than $200 million in settlements and verdicts.
Columbus Auto Accident FAQs
I Had a Car Accident in Columbus and am Injured. What Steps Should I Take After a Car Accident?
Make sure everyone is OK, then call 911. If you have a cell phone, take pictures of the scene and the cars, including the license plate of all vehicles involved.
Exchange information and make sure you get the other driver’s insurance information. If you can, take a picture of the other driver and the other driver’s license.
Should I Give a Recorded Statement to an Insurance Company?
Whether you provide a recorded statement to an insurance company may depend on which insurance company you are speaking with.
If speaking with your insurance carrier, you may have to provide a recorded statement.
If you are speaking with the other driver’s insurance carrier, you do not have to provide a recorded statement.
If the Other Driver is At Fault for the Accident, Can I Go Through My Auto Insurance Company for Property Damage?
Yes, if your auto insurance policy provides coverage for your property damage, you can go through your auto insurance carrier. Keep in mind that if you go through your auto insurance carrier to resolve your property damage claim, you may have a deductible.
What Kind of Damages Am I Owed If I’m Injured by a Negligent Driver?
The person at-fault for the accident is responsible for your property damage, medical bills, and lost income, along with your pain and suffering. Additionally, if you have a permanent injury and/or require future treatment, the responsible party is responsible for your future medical bills, future lost wages, and future pain and suffering.
Should My Bills be Submitted to My Health Insurance Plan?
Typically, the auto insurance carrier for the person responsible for the accident will not immediately pay your medical bills. Usually, they won’t even consider paying those bills until you are ready to settle your bodily injury claim.
Therefore, you may want to have your bills submitted to your health insurance carrier so that they don’t get sent to collections. Another option may be to submit your medical bills to your auto insurance carrier if you have medical payments coverage.
What are Your Fees and Costs for My Car Accident Case or Claim?
There are a variety of different ways a lawyer gets paid for his or her legal services, including, but not limited to:
- Contingency fees
- Flat fees
- Hourly rates
All fee arrangements are typically agreed to, in writing, before representation begins.
At GBM Law, our Columbus personal injury and motor vehicle accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis.
What does this mean for you?
You will not pay our attorneys for their legal services unless they successfully settle your case.
In contingency fee arrangements, an attorney agrees to accept a certain percentage of the money awarded in a judgment or negotiated in a settlement. On average, attorneys will take one-third (1/3) of the money a client recovers.
Do Your Columbus and Ohio Car Accident Attorneys Offer a Free Consultation?
At GBM Law, consultations are free. To make the process as reasonable as possible for our clients, we are only paid if we recover compensation for you.
Don’t go into this without legal representation.
Hire a lawyer that cares, with the skills, experience, and track record to fight for your case.