As the Oakville, Tennessee area continues to grow, more and more cars are on the road every day. There are distractions inside and outside vehicles, meaning you are more likely to get into a car accident and suffer serious injuries. A larger vehicle can also damage your car, meaning you could miss work and face high repair bills.
If you or a loved one is injured from an automotive collision, contact an Oakville personal injury lawyer at the law firm of Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC. We have helped victims win thousands of dollars in their car crash cases, and we will work tirelessly for you. Our professional legal team will guide you on the complex process of filing a claim or lawsuit.
Tennessee Auto Insurance Laws
Tennessee law requires all drivers to carry automobile insurance or face fines and lose their license. Despite this, many drivers choose not to purchase liability insurance, which leaves them in financial trouble if they cause an accident. Drivers in Tennessee can buy uninsured motorist coverage to guard against the chance of being in a crash with someone who cannot pay compensation.
You can also invest in underinsured motorist coverage for help when another driver’s insurance is not sufficient to cover your losses. Liability insurance in Tennessee requires certain minimum coverage amounts:
- $25,000 for each injury or death per accident
- $50,000 for total injuries or deaths per accident
- $15,000 for property damage per accident
Insurance companies will resist paying out claims unless it is obvious their client is at fault. They use their own crash investigators to determine if you are to blame and will negotiate a lower settlement if they think they have proof of your liability. Having a skilled car accident attorney in Oakville, TN, means you can rest easy while your attorney works with the insurance adjusters.
If the insurance company does not offer you a satisfactory settlement, your lawyer can help you file a personal injury claim to win the compensation you need.
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When More than One Person Is at Fault in Your Car Accident
Tennesse is an “at-fault state.” This means that anyone responsible for causing a car accident is responsible for paying damages to those affected by the collision. In most cases, the at-fault person has insurance to cover these costs, but you may still need to file a personal injury claim to receive the payout. If a driver has no insurance, you can sue the individual directly.
You can also sue other parties who are involved, such as a rideshare company. If you are in an Uber or Lyft vehicle, not only is the driver at fault, but you can pursue the company as part of your case. Likewise, you can file a personal injury claim against other drivers who contributed to the accident.
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When You Are Partly Responsible for Your Car Crash
If you played a part in causing the collision, then you need to understand how Tennessee’s
modified comparative fault system will affect your case. You can still sue other drivers, but you will be subject to the court finding you partially at fault. Your damages will be reduced accordingly. For example, if you sue for $10,000 in damages and are found 20% responsible, the court will reduce your damages awarded by 20% ($2000) if you win.
This holds true unless you are found 50% or more to blame. At that level, you will receive no compensation at all from the parties you are suing. Because filing and litigating a lawsuit is costly, it is wise to tell your whole story to an experienced car accident attorney at Gatti, Keltner, Bienvenu & Montesi, PLC so we can help. We can tell you whether a personal injury lawsuit is your best option and discuss other ways you might receive restitution for your losses.
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Winning Compensation in an Oakville Car Accident Lawsuit
Along with showing proof of a defendant’s responsibility in your car accident, you should prepare a list of the damages you have incurred as a result. Your attorney can help you calculate a full accounting of how you have suffered and what you have lost due to someone else’s actions. If your injuries are severe, you could face medical costs for years to come, and those costs need to be compensated.
You can help your legal team by keeping a careful record of all your receipts and associated expenses related to your accident. Bills from medical providers, receipts from auto repair shops, and a journal of your recovery process are all valuable in building your case for damages.
Tennessee allows you to seek two main types of damages: economic and non-economic. Economic damages often have a bill or receipt associated with them. Non-economic damages include emotional suffering and the amount of pain you experience. Frequently requested damages include:
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning potential
- Physical therapy
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
- Travel costs for medical treatments
- Emergency transport expenses (ambulance or helicopter)
- Hospital bills, including surgery, ICU, and EY costs
The Non-Economic Damages Cap
Tennessee allows you to receive all economic damages if you win your case. However, the state caps non-economic damage awards at $750,000, except in cases of catastrophic injury or death. In these cases, the limit is raised to $1 million.
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Filing Your Car Accident Claim
It is crucial to gather all the evidence you can to support your claim of wrongdoing when you file a personal injury lawsuit after a car accident. This material is key to successfully negotiating an insurance settlement or litigating a jury trial. The more evidence you have of the other driver’s fault, the better your chance of winning your case and receiving the full amount of damages you seek.
Your attorney will assist you in collecting documentation such as:
- Police reports
- Video from traffic and dashboard cameras
- Witness statements
- Photos of the accident scene
- Medical records of your injuries
- Auto repair estimates or receipts
- Testimony from experts
Assembling all this material can take quite some time, so it is essential to hire a car accident lawyer immediately after your crash. Tennessee allows just one year after the date of the accident for filing personal injury cases. If you decide to negotiate with insurance companies first, that could take weeks or months, leaving you with less time to build your case before the filing window closes.
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Contact an Oakville Car Accident Lawyer Today
Even a minor car accident can have big consequences if you suffer injuries that worsen after the first day. You and your family could face astronomical medical bills, and the person who hurt you must be held accountable. To win the compensation you need to heal with less stress and worry, you need a qualified car accident lawyer in Oakville, TN, from Gatti, Keltner, Bievenu & Montesi PLC.
Our dedicated team of legal professionals is waiting to listen to your story and fight for the settlement you deserve. We are dedicated to investigating every option for you and helping your family find relief in this trying time. Use our convenient online form to contact us and schedule your free consultation today.