Brad Nakase, Attorney
Many severe road accidents are due to the poor condition of roads and highways. In the USA about one-third of the total road accidents are due to the bad conditions of the road. In which around two million people get injured, and 22000 people lose their lives each year.
Although the city government has special funds and departments for the designing, building, and maintenance of roads, it is not convenient to track the condition of every single street.
When you are injured or have any other kind of damage due to a crash that inadequate conditions on the road caused, you deserve compensation for your loss.
Here is everything you should understand to make a claim for your compensation to the road safety agencies.
Poor Condition of Road:
Speeding, driving under the influence, and distracted driving is common causes of accidents. Poor road conditions also add a significant amount to the massive number of car accidents that happen each year.
Typical issues with roads that can result in an accident:
Protection of Claim:
If you already know what to do after you were involved in an crash that inadequate road conditions caused, it would be easy for you to proceed with the compensation claim. It doesn’t matter if it was a single car or a multiple car accident.
Where you can find compensation:
Every case of road accident is individual. There are various ways to claims for the compensation to different sources.
Your Car Insurance Company: Report the accident to your insurance carrier even if some other reason causes the accident and you are not responsible. There is a term used in contract “Notice Clause.” This clause means that you will report any accident and cooperate in the investigation of the crash.
The wording of the notice clause is as given below:
If you are living in a city with no-fault insurance, you must ask your own insurance company for the payment of personal injuries. Med pay and Personal Injury Protection involve the payment of all expenses due to medical injuries, wages lost, and out-of-pocket costs. Keep in mind the compensation for suffering and pain is not included.
In no-fault cities, you are permitted to claim compensation from the other driver if you are severely injured, or your expenses have exceeded your PIP limit.
The insurance company of at-fault Driver: You are involved in a collision where the cause is the negligence of another driver, but there were also poor conditions on the road. You must submit the compensation claim to the other driver’s insurance carrier.
Before this claim, you have to show proof that:
A Third-Party Was Negligent: What if a third party’s negligent actions caused poor road conditions? You must claim for compensation of your losses and damages to that third party if their actions caused an accident. It is not the government’s fault.
Governmental Agencies: Most of the roads fall under the responsibility of local government, and it is possible the road with hazards to traffic may fall under these premises. Some of the main roads and highways are under the federal government’s jurisdiction.
Compensation claim against Government:
You have to prove the following things for the successful claim against the government:
Visit the federal courthouse and study lawsuits that were filed against the Department of Transportation and Federal Highway Administration. Specifically, find the cases about road quality in the region where your accident occurred.
Visit the office of the county clerk and study the lawsuits against the local city government or private construction companies about designing, constructing, and maintaining the roads. Specifically, find the cases more closely related to your accidents and see what kind of pieces of evidence were used by the plaintiff and how much compensation was approved.
Contact the office of the attorney general of the state and ask for the copy of advisory opinion given to the local or state governmental agencies related to road conditions and hazards.
Search online about the lawsuits against government agencies and more specifically, the claim notices issued to governmental agencies, hearing of the court or lawsuits related to road accidents.
Keep in mind that the victim of the accident has complete right to seek the consultation of some professional personal injury attorney. A personal injury attorney can manage the compensation claim, filing of a claim, the value of the amount that is fair for the injury compensation. He/she can also file the lawsuit against a governmental agency if required.
Filing Claim Notice:
If you are planning to file a claim against the governmental agency, you will start by filing claim notice that is specified by the governmental agency for the injury compensation.
This notice formally notifies the government that you have filed a claim. If you want to file a claim against multiple governmental agencies, file the separate claim notice against each agency.
Fill in the claim notice form accurately to avoid any rejection and get it through the processed quickly.
The details of the accident must be entered in the claim form. Details include the location, time, and date of the accident along with the complete explanation about designing, constructing, and maintaining road due to which accident occurred.
The claim form must contain the whole list of injuries and damages incurred to you by the collision along with the suitable proof that the accident occurred due to negligent behavior of governmental agency.
After the filing of your claim, the governmental agency reviews it. They decide whether to reject the claim or proceed it further for the administrative hearing. This is where the victim can present his/her case.
If the claim is rejected in this hearing, the victim has the right to make an administrative appeal.
If the administrative appeal is also rejected, the only way to file the compensation claim is sue the governmental agency whose negligence resulted in your accident.
Need of an Attorney:
It is not advisable to seek an attorney consultation and file the claim with the governmental agency if PIP and Med pay recovery are enough for the compensation of your injuries and losses. It will just be a waste of time if you still go after the governmental agency and spend money on the attorney’s consultation.
If the coverage provided by the auto insurance company is not enough for the compensation of your injuries and losses, you can rely on health insurance. After that, you will have to deal with deductibles.
Severe injuries like Traumatic Brain Injuries, damages to the spinal cord, or any broken bone, involve high amount, complex claims. If you are injured severely, you can have an attorney who will get the available amount of compensation for you. It will be the duty of the attorney to find out all sources of compensation to get the maximum amount.
A professional personal injury attorney will get compensation from:
The attorney will deal with all the sources of compensation if there are multiple reasons behind the accident cause.
So, don’t wait if you are injured in a road accident due to poor road condition. Find a professional personal injury attorney and file the compensation claim before the time limit runs out.
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