I-5 cuts through the coastal city of Bellingham, in Washington. State routes 11, 539, and 542 run through Bellingham, as well. When car accidents in Bellingham involve injuries or damages over $1000, 911 should be called. The Bellingham Police Department handles hit and run and no-suspect accidents. Wildlife is involved in some of these accidents, but more common are accidents caused by negligent drivers. A moment’s carelessness on the road can result in serious or catastrophic injuries. If you were injured or a loved one was killed in a crash, you should call the Bellingham car accident lawyers of Walton Law.
Attorneys to Prove Liability for Car Accidents
We must be able to prove a defendant’s liability to recover damages after a car accident. Many car crashes are the result of a negligent driver. To establish a driver’s negligence, we will need to prove it is more likely than not: (1) you were owed a duty of care by the defendant, (2) breach of the duty to use reasonable care, (3) causation, and (4) actual damages.
Drivers may breach the duty to use reasonable care by failing to obey traffic signs and signals, speeding, distracted driving, driving under the influence, and driving aggressively. For example, if you are driving on Route 539 through Bellingham and a drunk driver drifts into your lane resulting in a crash in which you suffer paralysis, we may be able to show his breach of the duty to use reasonable care caused your injuries.
In some situations, such as those involving multiple vehicles and complex circumstances, it is critical for our Bellingham attorneys to evaluate the car accident carefully to determine all contributing causes. Complex accidents may require the retention of an accident reconstruction specialist. More than one driver may be at fault. There may be dangerous property conditions or other parties to also hold accountable for an accident. For example, if you were cut off by an aggressive driver on a portion of a private road that was not maintained, and another driver was talking on the phone and rear-ended you, such that you were left with catastrophic injuries, there may be more than one party we should try to hold accountable for the car accident.
You should be aware that the other side’s insurance carrier will also be looking at the situation closely to determine whether you are partially or fully to blame for your injuries. Washington follows the doctrine of comparative negligence, under which a plaintiff’s damages are reduced by her degree of blame for the accident. This means that the other side will be looking for ways in which you were negligent, such as whether you were texting, speeding, in an argument with somebody in the car, or failed to follow a traffic law that may have contributed to the accident. For example, if the damages are $200,000, and you are found 25% to blame because you were driving too fast given weather conditions, you will only be able to recover $150,000 from the defendant or defendants and will have to bear the other $50,000 yourself.
Damages After a Car Crash
The extent of your injuries will determine the damages our Bellingham car accident lawyers can recover for you. These may include both economic and noneconomic losses such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, loss of consortium, mental anguish, lost earning capacity, lost wages, medical bills, replacement services, and out-of-pocket costs. When injuries are catastrophic, such as brain injuries or paralysis, your damages are likely to be more significant.
Fatal car accidents caused by another’s negligence may leave loved ones not only full of grief but also weighed down by practical and financial concerns. When a loved one dies in a car accident caused by someone else and our attorneys can establish liability, we may be able to recover wrongful death damages on your behalf.
Hire a Seasoned Bellingham Car Accident Attorney
Car accidents can have stressful and tragic repercussions. As car accident lawyers serving Bellingham, our firm strives to build a practice that provides personalized service to each and every client. Chris Walton has the highest possible rating (AV Preeminent) given by Martindale-Hubbell. At Walton Law, we understand you may not be able to meet with us during normal business hours, so we offer both evening and weekend appointments. If you’re injured, we can come to you. Call us at (866) 338-7079 or online to schedule a free consultation.