St. Louis County Car Accident Lawyer
Car accidents have the potential to occur at any time and without warning. However, just because a defendant does not intend to cause a collision or inflict injuries upon you does not mean that they do not carry civil liability. The purpose of a car accident claim is to hold an at-fault driver and their insurance company responsible for covering your losses. This can include providing payments for medical bills, lost earnings, and pain and suffering.
A St. Louis County car accident lawyer may be able to help you to collect the compensation needed to set things right. A seasoned injury attorney is ready to help you build your case and to represent your interests every step of the way.
Assigning Blame Following an Accident
There is no such thing as a no-fault accident in St. Louis County. Any collision between two vehicles is someone’s responsibility. The goal of a car accident claim is to blame an accident on another driver. The most common way to accomplish this is to prove that a defendant was negligent. Common examples of this negligent behavior include:
- Failing to check blind spots
- Failing to stop at red lights
- Texting while driving
Even if a defendant does not violate a rule of the road as provided by law, their driving may still be careless enough to warrant a negligence case. However, car accident cases in St. Louis County must also evaluate the plaintiff’s role in contributing to the accident.
Comparative Negligence in an Auto Wreck Case
MO Statute §537.765 is the state’s comparative negligence statute. This law requires juries in negligence cases such as car accident claims to evaluate the actions of both parties to assign blame. If the jury believes that the injured plaintiff shares any of the blame for the incident, that jury must reduce the plaintiff’s award by that percentage of fault. As a result, plaintiffs in car accident cases must be prepared to not only argue that a defendant was at fault, but also that they did not contribute in any way to the crash. A St. Louis County car accident lawyer could help to explain the important legal concepts and to build a case that names the defendant as the sole at-fault party in the crash.
What if the Defendant Received a Ticket?
Most car accident cases involve a balance in evaluating the actions of both drivers that resulted in the collision. However, in certain situations, the actions of a police officer may simplify this analysis.
The personal injury laws in St. Louis County use a legal theory called negligence per se. In short, this theory recognizes that it may be permissible to assume that a defendant is at fault for an accident. This applies when a defendant commits a criminal act or violation that results in an injury.
As it concerns car accidents, the state’s traffic code prohibits speeding, tailgating, failing to yield, and a dozen other dangerous driving activities. If a police officer issues the defendant a ticket, and a court finds that defendant responsible, the civil court hearing the case for damages may assume that the defendant is negligent and 100 percent responsible for the plaintiff’s losses. A St. Louis County car accident lawyer could help to investigate whether a defendant received a ticket and to push for findings of negligence per se.
A St. Louis County Car Accident Attorney Could Help You
Even a seemingly minor car accident has the potential to forever change your life. Many injuries do not become apparent for many days following a collision, and the damage to your vehicle and finances may be significant. An at-fault defendant is should always be held responsible to pay for your losses. However, this only happens if you can build a powerful case against a negligent defendant.
An attorney could help you to present a legal case designed to represent your favored interests. They can work to gather essential evidence, to use that evidence to build a case against an at-fault driver, and to demand fair payments for your injuries. There is a limited time to pursue a case, so do not delay in contacting a St. Louis County car accident lawyer today.