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Iowa Auto Accidents
To collect damages from an auto accident injury claim, Iowa law requires you, or your car collision lawyer on your behalf, to prove the other driver was negligent. You must show these components to assert your Iowa-based auto accident claim:
- The driver who caused your injuries had a legal duty not to injure you and failed to live up to that duty
- There is a direct connection between the other driver's responsibility and your resulting personal injury
- You suffered a financial loss as a result of the automobile accident
If you suffer injuries in Iowa because of a car accident caused by another driver, you may be able to receive compensation for damages, property losses, and injuries including:
- Repair or replacement of your vehicle and any property damaged in the accident
- Lost wages for time missed from employment, including doctor's appointments, physical therapy, and court appearances
- Lost future earning capacity because of injuries
- Other costs or out-of-pocket expenses like towing and storage fees
- Cost of hiring help to do chores such as cleaning, lawn care, cooking, shopping, and childcare that you cannot perform due to your injury
- Past, present, and future medical bills for treatment related to the accident
- Emotional distress damages stemming from the automobile accident
- Permanent disability and disfigurement damages
Post-Accident Tips for Iowa Car Crash Victims
Iowa auto accident victims may assume there is nothing they can do to improve their situation after the accident, but this is incorrect. Iowa lawyers recommend several key steps you can take immediately to bolster your claims and protect your legal rights:
- Do not speak to an insurance claims agent or adjuster. Let your car accident attorney address discussions and negotiations with insurance professionals on your behalf. Adjusters ask leading questions and present you with waivers, releases, and confusing documentation that can reduce your right to receive compensation. Do not make a recorded or taped statement or sign any document until you have had the benefit of consultation with a personal injury lawyer.
- Do talk to witnesses at the accident scene and take pictures of the scene and the damage if you can. Photographs are hard to dispute, especially at the mediation table or as a visual aid at trial. Write down names, addresses, and contact information for witnesses for future reference, especially in the event of litigation. Pay very close attention to statements made about speed, signals, swerving, right-of-way, stop signs, traffic lights, blind spots, aggressive, and defensive driving.
- Get prompt medical treatment. You have the right after an accident to see a doctor of your choice. Do not allow an insurance professional to choose the doctor you must see. Follow your doctor’s recommended treatment regimen and keep detailed records of all treatment, prescriptions, and services received. It is wise to keep a record of appointments, medications, treatments, hospitalizations, and office visits.
- Consult with an Iowa car collision lawyer promptly. It is a good idea to request an initial consultation with one or more auto accident attorneys in Iowa as soon after the crash as possible after seeking appropriate medical treatment. These lawyers can help you understand your options and how to best protect your legal interests.
Deadlines for Filing Iowa Accident Claims
Iowa’s statute of limitations affords most injured persons two years from the date of an auto accident to file an accident claim. Time is of the essence in making your auto accident injury and damaged property claims in Iowa, so seek prompt legal assistance from an auto accident attorney as soon after you have obtained proper medical treatment as possible. Delays can prejudice your rights and interests. If you are not able to negotiate a voluntary settlement with the other driver or that driver's insurance company, consider filing a lawsuit in state court. The civil suit must begin before the statute of limitations ends and time runs out for bringing your claim.
Iowa Is a Tort Liability State
Iowa adheres to a system of tort liability in the context of auto accident and personal injury laws. As such, there are no thresholds or legal limitations placed upon injured victims’ abilities to sue. If you are involved in a car accident in the state, one party must be determined to be the cause of the accident. That party is considered “at fault” under Iowa law and becomes legally responsible for all resulting medical and property damages. These damages are typically addressed through the insurance company of the at-fault driver. Because Iowa is a tort liability state, most insurance companies recommend that drivers purchase insurance coverage limits higher than the state-required minimums.
Locate an Iowa Car Accident Lawyer Today
An Iowa car accident attorney can represent you in court proceedings, evaluate your case, assess possible bases for probable damages stemming from the car wreck, highlight strengths and weaknesses of your case, and outline the likely timeline for negotiating or litigating your claim. An Iowa-based car collision lawyer can help you navigate the state court system and best position you for maximum recovery of damages. Call now to speak with an auto collision attorney in Iowa at 877-913-7222.