Every motor vehicle accident case raises at least three
1) Who was at fault?
To be entitled to damages under Virginia law, you must
prove that someone else was at fault in causing the accident.
Sometimes the question of fault is easily determined, such
as when someone for no legitimate reason drives through
a red light and collides with someone who is lawfully
in the intersection. What, you might ask, could be a
legitimate reason for driving through a red light? Well,
the answers are endless - mechanical failure, sudden
illness, or anything else that the driver is unable to
control. Until your opponent concedes liability for the
accident, you should take nothing for granted. For example,
contrary to popular belief, a driver who drives into
the rear of another car is not automatically at fault
under the law. Fault is a threshold question without
first establishing fault, the case cannot proceed.
2) What are the injuries?
The amount that an injury victim is entitled to recover
from a negligent driver is usually determined by the
extent of the injuries, although in some cases the defendant’s
conduct is so outrageous that the injured victim can also
assert a claim for punitive damages. The most common elements
of compensatory damages in motor vehicle cases include
bodily injuries and their effect, past and future medical
expenses, past and future lost wages, future lessened earning
capacity, disfigurement, inconvenience, pain, and suffering.
Virginia law sets no limit on the dollar amount an injury
victim can recover in compensatory damages.
3) Is there adequate insurance
coverage to fully compensate you for your injuries?
There are many potential sources of insurance coverage
from which you might receive compensation for your injuries.
The insurance coverage types (click here for more info) available
to automobile accident victims fall into three categories:
liability coverage; uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage;
and medical expense coverage (also known as medical payments
coverage or "med
of potential insurance coverage can be found in some unexpected
places, so when you meet with us, be sure to provide us
with a copy of every policy that might apply. Because Virginia
law sets such low limits on the amount of insurance that
motor vehicle owners must have, we see too many people
who have cases of clear liability, substantial injuries,
but grossly inadequate insurance coverage. To ensure that
this does not happen to you, please review your own policies
and consider increasing the limits on your uninsured and
underinsured motorist coverage.