As the popularity of self-driving cars increases, so does the number of accidents. It’s often difficult to determine who’s at fault in these situations since the driver isn’t in full control of all functions at all times.
At Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates, our team of experienced autonomous vehicle injury lawyers is ready to help if you were injured in an accident with an autonomous vehicle.
Connect with Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates by contacting us online or calling (800) 985-1819. Our skilled attorneys will provide you with legal counsel to help build the strongest possible case and get you the compensation you need.
Steps to take after being in an autonomous vehicle crash
Try to keep the following in mind if you’re involved in a collision with an autonomous vehicle. These tips help keep you safe while helping you preserve and gather critical evidence to support your case.
1. Move your vehicle to a safer location
If you can, try to get your vehicle to the shoulder of the road or a nearby parking lot.
2. Check yourself and your passenger(s) for injuries
The more information you can provide to emergency medical personnel, the more effectively they can treat you and anyone else who is hurt.
3. Call 911 and ask for police and an ambulance
Even if you don’t think you’re seriously hurt, call 911 and accept a ride to the hospital. The adrenaline running through your body might mask the true extent of your injury. Ask the dispatcher to send a police officer as well so they can provide their opinion of who may have caused the crash.
4. Tell your side of the story to the responding police officer
Be truthful with the officer, of course, but never admit the slightest degree of fault. The officer is going to write down everything you say, and the insurance company will use that against you if they can.
5. Notify your insurance company
You need to do this as soon as you’re in a safe spot. If you wait too long, your insurer might use that as an excuse to deny your claim.
6. Gather evidence at the scene
Take pictures and obtain the contact information of any witnesses. Don’t worry about trying to interview them – your Chicago autonomous vehicle injury lawyer will take care of that for you.
7. Visit Urgent Care or your primary care physician
Receiving follow-up medical care as quickly as possible will help improve your chances of a full recovery. It will also create a record of your treatment, showing your medical expenses. This will be a big help to your case.
8. Meet with an autonomous vehicle accident attorney
Speak with an injury lawyer as soon as you can. You’ll want them to investigate the accident immediately so they can gather the proof needed to make your case its strongest.
Make sure you file a claim on time
You have two years from the day of the accident to protect your right to obtain compensation. This is Illinois’ statute of limitations. If you don’t take action before the statute expires, you’ll be on the hook for all of your accident-related expenses.
Possible damages you can claim
The following are examples of the compensation you may be able to pursue.
Economic damages are tangible losses that can be quantified with a dollar amount. Common examples include past and future medical bills, lost wages, and lost earning capacity.
While economic damages are simple to prove, non-economic damages are more challenging. This is because these damages are subjective and don’t lend themselves to easy calculation. You’ll need to work with a skilled lawyer if you want compensation for pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, emotional trauma, and other non-economic damages.
Parties who may be liable for your injury
Because there’s not much legal precedent for these types of cases, it’s not always easy to determine who’s at fault. The manufacturer may be responsible for producing faulty sensors or other components. In that case, the driver might not be liable. However, the driver of the autonomous vehicle may be to blame if they failed to control the vehicle in time.
Corporations that produce self-driving cars would like to believe that they aren’t culpable for accidents that occur with their self-driving cars. But they must be held accountable when they’re at fault for their vehicles failing to function safely.
How our Chicago attorneys prove negligence
To have a successful personal injury claim based on negligence, your attorney must prove that the following elements are true:
- The liable party owed you a duty of care
- They breached that duty
- You suffered injuries or damages in the accident
- The breach of duty caused the injuries
There are many ways a seasoned lawyer can prove negligence. For example, they can examine the autonomous vehicle to see if a sensor failed to operate or a braking system failed. If there’s reason to believe the driver caused the accident by talking or texting, your attorney can work to obtain their phone records.
We fight the insurance company to get you maximum compensation
Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates has been defeating insurance companies on a regular basis since 1924. We assure you that we’ll be ready to fight for your rights, regardless of who the opposition may be.
The rise of self-driving car technology
Self-driving cars are becoming more common, so autonomous car injuries are expected to continue to occur and increase in frequency. The more consumers hold corporations liable for faulty technology, the more responsible they’ll be when introducing new technology.
Individual consumers are buying self-driving cars more frequently, and ridesharing apps are hoping to incorporate self-driving cars into their structure in the near future. If you were injured in an accident involving a self-driving car, you may play an important role in establishing a legal precedent for these types of cases.
Common autonomous vehicle accident injuries
Any kind of car wreck can lead to devastating injuries, including the following:
- Broken bones
- Internal organ damage
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
“Dos” and “don’ts” of dealing with insurance after a crash
Although we will handle most of the correspondence with the insurance company, there may be times when they’ll need to speak with you directly. Should this happen, keep these “dos and don’ts” in mind.
- Be polite and professional when speaking with insurance adjusters and employees.
- Stick to the facts and only share basic information about the accident.
- Take detailed notes of all conversations, including the date and time.
- Refer questions to your attorney.
- Admit fault or apologize for the accident.
- Sign any document from the insurance company without consulting your attorney.
- Provide any recorded statements to the insurance company.
- Accept a settlement without consulting your attorney first.
If you’re ever in doubt about what to say or do, you can always contact your lawyer for legal advice. It’s better to be safe than sorry when dealing with the insurance company, and our experienced attorneys are here to help you every step of the way.
Cost of hiring an autonomous vehicle accident lawyer
Our Chicago personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means you don’t pay anything upfront. You only pay a fee if we’re able to secure compensation on your behalf.
Why you should visit a doctor as soon as possible
If you don’t get medical help, you’ll put your recovery in jeopardy and may jeopardize your case. The insurance company could claim you’re not hurt as badly as you claim or that your injuries weren’t caused by the crash.
Why work with Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates
Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates is a premier trial law firm in Chicago, Illinois that has been in the family since 1924. Our experienced team is prepared to help you in the case that you have suffered an injury because of someone’s negligent actions.
Our Chicago autonomous vehicle accident attorneys are here to help
When you’re dealing with an injury that another party is liable for, it’s important that you have an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer who’s familiar with the law and can help you fight for your rights. At Horwitz, Horwitz & Associates, we’re committed to protecting both your rights and your livelihood.
Call (800) 985-1819 today to arrange a free consultation with a Chicago autonomous vehicle injury attorney.