After hitting an animal with your car, you may find there is one at-fault party or several. The at-fault party’s identity will vary from case to case. Responsible parties may include:
- The animal’s owner
- The person hired by the animal’s owner to watch the animal
- A road maintenance team, if they made it more difficult for drivers to spot objects in the road and stop in time
Getting Help After Hitting an Animal
A car accident attorney from our firm can help you with your case in many ways, including by:
- Reviewing your options: No two cases are alike. We help each client determine how best to approach their case and what they can expect to happen next.
- Conducting an investigation: We may visit the accident scene, request certain types of documentary evidence (e.g., car accident reports), and more.
- Negotiating a settlement: We do our utmost to convince the liable party’s insurance company to pay a fair amount and secure a quick settlement for our clients.
- Representing you in court: If your case must go to trial, we can do all of the work on your behalf, such as tracing witnesses and delivering oral arguments.
In addition to relieving you of your legal burden, we can save you money by:
- Assessing your case for free: All callers are entitled to a free consultation. A member of our team can quickly tell you if we may be of any assistance.
- Calculating what your case is worth: When a client knows how much they are entitled to, it is harder for the insurance company to talk them into accepting a settlement that is too low to meet their needs.
- Charging nothing up front: We only charge our clients attorney’s fees if and when they receive compensation. If we do not win, you do not pay us attorney’s fees.
For a free legal consultation, call (800) 537-8185
Your Accident Could Qualify You for Damages
What kinds of damages can you collect after a car accident? The answer is different for each client. A lawyer from our office can review the case, identify all compensable injuries, and calculate exactly how much you may be able to recover. Compensable injuries include financial, physical, and psychological losses. Financial losses are, in legal jargon, referred to as economic damages.
Examples of economic damages are:
- Medical expenses: This includes both past and future treatments that you require to stay alive, stay healthy, or manage injury symptoms.
- Repair expenses: The accident damaged your vehicle enough that it needed to be fixed or even replaced.
- Other accident-related expenses: For instance, if you had to hire a housekeeper to clean the house as you recuperated, you could be reimbursed for that cost.
- Lost wages: Your injuries prevented you from going to work and earning the money that keeps your family afloat.
You May Be Able to Recover Non-Economic Losses
Physical and psychological losses are called non-economic damages. Examples of non-economic damages include:
- Physical distress: Your injuries are painful and prevent you from doing everything that you need or want to.
- Psychological distress: All car accidents can be emotionally upsetting, but those involving animals may cause particular anguish.
- Loss of consortium: The accident and your injuries had any sort of negative impact on your marriage.
- Loss of quality of life: You now require help with basic, necessary functions (e.g., taking a shower).
Your right to sue is time sensitive. For instance, while Ark. Code Ann. § 16-56-105 gives Arkansas residents three years from the accident date to file a lawsuit, there may be other circumstances that shorten this deadline. It is best to seek legal help as soon as possible to preserve your right to sue.
Proving Fault in Car Accident Cases Involving Animals
According to Page 7 of a document that the Alabama Department of Transportation released, hitting an animal was the fifth most common cause of traffic accidents in the state in 2019. Of the 3,111 accidents involving hit animals, 283 resulted in an injury, and three resulted in a fatality.
Such accidents may be caused by one or more at-fault parties. To help you prove the identity and responsibility of the party you are suing, we can gather evidence from sources like:
- The authorities: The officer who responded to your crash should have filed a report detailing who was involved and when and where it happened.
- Your doctors: If you sought medical treatment after the accident, it would appear in your medical record. We can use that record and direct statements from your medical providers as evidence.
- Eyewitnesses: Anyone who saw the accident happen may have memories, photos, or video footage that could help your case.
In addition, if you have any evidence of your own – if you took photos of the scene, for example – we can include it as part of your case.
Morris Bart, LLC, Can Help You Review Your Legal Options
If you hit an animal with your car, we can help you find out who is at fault and how much compensation you are entitled to. For a free case evaluation, call the Morris Bart law office at (800) 537-8185. We serve clients across Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, and Alabama.
Questions?Call (800) 537-8185
to find a Morris Bart office near you.