Dedicated Car Accident Attorneys in Maryville
Representing victims of auto accidents in Blount County, Tennessee
Even a minor auto collision represents a major inconvenience to a driver who must deal with injuries and car repairs. Sometimes, you can successfully obtain the compensation you need to pay for your losses by filing your own insurance claim. However, you should beware. When you sign an insurance settlement offer, you lose your rights to additional compensation — which means if a minor injury turns into a major medical concern down the road, you can’t take any legal action.
It costs nothing to talk to an experienced Maryville car accident attorney before signing away your rights. At Shepherd & Long, P.C., our personal injury lawyers explain all your available options and give you all the information you need to make the best decision and secure the compensation you deserve.
Tennessee car accident facts
According to the Tennessee Department of Safety, 204,772 traffic crashes occurred in our state in 2019. Of these, 48,521 accidents involved injuries and 1,068 resulted in fatalities. With this volume of incidents, police cannot always conduct thorough investigations, especially when conditions make it difficult to determine the at-fault party.
Tennessee law permits injury victims to pursue compensation for an accident even if they share up to 49% fault. But establishing liability for accidents in Maryville and across East Tennessee is a complex process. Our experienced personal injury lawyers develop effective cases for individuals seeking compensation for their accidents.
How can a Maryville car accident attorney help?
As experienced East Tennessee auto accident lawyers, we provide valuable assistance – even if simply filing an auto insurance claim is most appropriate in your situation. We can help in the following ways:
- We provide a free consultation to determine if an insurance claim makes sense for you, and advise you on how to proceed with your claim.
- We can review an insurance settlement offer before you sign it to determine if it provides the full compensation you deserve for your claim.
- We can intervene at any time if an insurance company unfairly reduces or denies your claim.
Common auto accident injuries
Many auto accidents result in property damage and perhaps a few cuts and contusions to drivers and passengers, but other auto accident victims suffer severe injuries. At Shepherd & Long in Maryville, we have nearly three decades of experience helping people pursue the full compensation they deserve when injured in accidents caused by the negligence of others.
Experienced car accident lawyers help injury victims develop the evidence they need to prove the full extent of their injuries and accurately predict the expenses related to those injuries, even if they extend over a lifetime. Our firm can help you secure compensation for:
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motor vehicle accidents account for 20% of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Head injuries may heal over time, but they can also result in long-term or even permanent disability. Long-lasting effects of a TBI can include impaired cognitive ability, emotional functioning, chronic pain, and memory difficulties.
Spinal cord injuries
As the spine is the primary carrier of messages from the body to the brain, these injuries frequently cause full or partial paralysis, leaving victims unable to continue working in their chosen fields — if they can work at all.
With prompt medical attention, most broken bones fully heal over time, but these injuries can disrupt people’s ability to work or care for their homes and families. And individuals may continue to experience reduced function after bones heal. As a skilled auto accident injury attorney, I know how to protect the rights of victims in Oak Ridge and throughout Tennessee.
Injuries to the neck pose particular challenges in injury claims. While victims often experience significant pain over an extended period, these injuries do not appear in X-rays. Symptoms do not always begin immediately after an accident, creating suspicion by insurance companies and lawyers defending the liable parties in auto accidents, but experienced auto accident injury attorneys can develop the evidence needed to establish effective claims for whiplash injuries.
What should I do after a Maryville car accident?
Particularly if you suffer injuries, keeping a clear head after an accident can be challenging. But if your injuries do not prevent you from remaining on the scene, everything you do or say can make a difference to the safety of all involved parties — and it can help or hinder your ability to pursue compensation from anyone responsible for the accident.
First, call for help
Fault does not matter when injured people need help. Call 911 to bring police and emergency personnel to the scene. If you do not have a phone, ask others to make this vital call.
Do not admit fault
After an accident, you typically need to conduct business with others involved, with witnesses and with the police. Most individuals experience a degree of shock after an accident, which limits their ability to accurately recollect accident details. Do not attempt to discuss the causes of the accident with others at the accident scene. Even in conversations with police, avoid admitting any degree of fault.
Collect information and evidence
If your injuries permit you to remain at the accident scene, collect the following information and evidence to help preserve your rights to compensation:
- Contact information for everyone involved in the accident and for witnesses — including license and insurance card information for all drivers in the car accident, and insurance information for property owners in the case of slip and fall or other premises-related accidents
- Photos of all damages and injuries, including all damaged vehicles
- Photos of the accident scene, including skid marks and positions of vehicles after a car accident
- A copy of the police report
- A notebook you use to record details about the accident and progress of your claim, including any statements of fault you overheard at the accident scene
Seek medical attention
Never assume that apparent minor injuries — such as a headache — do not require a doctor. Delayed onset injuries typically start with a minor symptom, only to develop into a debilitating condition. Even small cuts can become infected if not treated properly. Be sure to retain copies of all doctor bills and receipts for medication, bandages, or other items you purchase to treat your injuries.
Frequently asked questions about Tennessee car accidents
Anyone who drives on busy East Tennessee roads needs basic information about handling auto accidents. Following are the most common questions we hear from our clients. Please feel free to follow up with our attorneys for more details.
- Can I collect damages if I bear some liability for an accident?
- What documents do I need to file an auto accident claim?
- What compensation can I expect to receive for my claim?
- Do I need to carry auto insurance?
- If I sustain serious injuries, does my claim have to go to court?
- Do I need a lawyer to file a claim?
Can I collect damages if I bear some liability for an accident?
Even if you are up to 49 percent responsible for your accident, the law permits you to pursue at least partial compensation from other liable parties.
What documents do I need to file an auto accident claim?
At a minimum, you need a copy of the police report, as well as insurance and driver’s license information for all drivers involved in the accident. If serious injuries prevent you from remaining at the scene, you can typically obtain this information by contacting the police.
What compensation can I expect to receive for my claim?
Medical costs represent only part of your losses. Our Maryville auto accident attorneys can help you recover all expenses related to your injuries, including:
- Lost time from work
- Inability to continue working due to disability
- Cost of hiring someone to care for you, your family and your home as long as you need assistance
- Long-term effects of permanent scarring
- Pain and suffering caused by your condition
And under certain circumstances, such as when your injuries result from willful acts, we can potentially pursue punitive damages on your behalf.
Do I need to carry auto insurance?
Tennessee law requires you to prove financial responsibility, which means you’re required to be financially responsible for any accident you cause. Most individuals carry at least the minimum required insurance coverage, but you can also meet state requirements in other ways. Although not required by law, you should also consider carrying uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage to avoid potential pitfalls if you are involved in an accident with someone who fails to meet those state financial responsibility requirements.
If I sustain serious injuries, does my claim have to go to court?
An experienced attorney in Tennessee can usually negotiate a full and fair out-of-court settlement without taking a claim to court. However, some auto accident lawyers may recommend a trial when a jury provides the best chance to obtain a generous award for your case. The legal team at Shepherd & Long work with you to determine which strategy may be more successful.
Do I need a lawyer to file a claim?
Remember, it costs nothing to discuss your case with one of our lawyers. Let us show you the advantages and disadvantages of all your available legal options — from filing your own claim to obtaining legal assistance for an out-of-court settlement or a lawsuit. Even if filing your own insurance claim is appropriate, we can provide valuable advice to help you file it efficiently, properly, and according to deadlines.
Contact an experienced auto accident lawyer in Maryville for a free consultation
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in an auto accident caused by the negligence of another, you need a smart car accident attorney to help you make informed decisions. We clearly explain the legal issues and handle the details so you can focus on healing. For more information, or to schedule a consultation, call us at 865-982-8060 or fill out the contact form. We regularly represent clients in Madisonville, Oak Ridge, Lenoir City and throughout East Tennessee.
We handle personal injury claims on a contingency fee basis. You pay no attorney fees until we successfully obtain compensation for you.