3 FAQs About Distracted Driving Car Accident Claims
If you were hurt in a car accident with a distracted driver, you may be entitled to compensation for all resulting damages. If your injuries are serious and you intend to bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault motorist, you’ll need strong evidence to prove liability. There are also steps you’ll have to take and mistakes you must avoid to give your case the best possible chance of success.
Read on to learn the answers to three frequently asked questions about distracted driving accident claims:
1. How can I Prove a Driver was Distracted While Behind the Wheel?
There are many types of evidence an attorney might use to prove liability after a distracted driving accident. Examples include:
- Cell phone records;
- Social media posts published by the at-fault driver just before the crash;
- Eyewitness testimony;
- Dash cam recordings;
- Footage from surveillance cameras near the scene; and
- The official police report.
Gathering this evidence can take time, and it may be necessary to apply legal pressure to collect evidence that’s being withheld. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you obtain all available evidence of liability.
2. What Kinds of Damages can I Pursue?
If you were hurt by a distracted driver in Florida, you may be able to recover compensation for:
- Medical bills;
- Lost wages;
- Lost benefits;
- Loss of future earning capacity;
- Property damage;
- Home care;
- Child care;
- Domestic help;
- Alternative transportation;
- Home and/or vehicle modifications;
- Pain and suffering;
- Emotional distress; and
- Hedonic damages.
Depending on the circumstances, your attorney may also advise you to seek punitive damages. To recover punitive damages, it must be shown that the defendant acted with gross negligence, which means an indifference or disregard for your life, rights, or safety. Because the dangers of certain types of driver distractions—such as texting or browsing social media on a cell phone—are so well known, engaging in such behaviors may constitute gross negligence.
3. What Should I do Following a Distracted Driving Accident?
If you’re struck by a distracted driver, the steps you take in the immediate aftermath and over the days and weeks that follow could have a major impact on the outcome of your personal injury claim. Here are a few of the most important tasks to complete after you leave the scene:
- Get an official medical diagnosis;
- Call a personal injury attorney;
- Deactivate your social media accounts so the insurance adjuster cannot browse through your posts for evidence to use against you;
- Follow the instructions of your medical providers exactly; and
- Direct any correspondence from the insurance company to your attorney.