FAIRFAX CAR ACCIDENT LAWYERS
A Fairfax car accident can leave you with significant injuries, and even some emotional trauma after the crash. Some people have trouble simply getting back into a car. It may be difficult for you to live your daily life, as stresses mount from medical bills, time that you are losing from work, and the loss of your vehicle. If you have been injured in a Fairfax car accident that was not your fault, you need the experienced team at Blaszkow Legal to fight for justice for you, and to hold the negligent party responsible.
Attorney Joe Blaszkow has handled Fairfax County car accidents for over 40 years, and his team of attorneys, paralegals, and investigators are ready to put this experience to work for you - to fight the insurance companies and get you the compensation that you deserve. Contact our office today for a free consultation to learn more about how a Fairfax car accident lawyer with Blaszkow Legal can help you!
Common types of Fairfax, Virginia Car Accidents
There are a lot of different kinds of car accidents, and at Blaszkow Legal we have worked with all of them. Some of the most common kinds of car accidents that they encounter include:
Rear-end collisions. This is when the driver behind you is following too closely, or simply not paying attention to the roadway, and strikes the rear of your car. Although not exclusively, this often happens at red lights.
T-Bone accidents. These kind of accidents happen one another vehicle fails to yield at a traffic light or stop sign, and often tries to cross an intersection, striking you in the middle of your car.
Hit and run accidents. This is when someone strikes your car, and takes off without exchanging information is required by Virginia law. This is handled as an uninsured motorist claim.
Multiple vehicle accidents. These are sometimes called pile-ups, and as a term of art, we refer to these kind of accidents when there are four or more vehicles involved. These can be very complicated, even if negligence is clear cut, because there may not be enough insurance coverage to go around.
Rollover accidents. When a vehicle ceases to have all four wheels on the roadway, and rolls onto its side or top, injuries can be serious.
Head on collisions. These are extremely serious accidents, and usually involve another driver crossing the center line, or driving in the wrong lanes.
Common causes of Fairfax Car Accidents
There is no single reason why car accidents happen so frequently in Fairfax County, but they include a multitude of factors that we see more often than not. They include the following:
Distracted driving. When people are focusing on their cell phones, texting, infotainment systems, or even just speaking to a passenger instead of devoting their full time and attention to the roadway, this is distracted driving. This is one of the leading causes of accidents in Virginia today
Drunk driving or impaired driving. DUI crashes are often serious, and unfortunately, usually injure a lot of innocent people. Drunk driving or impaired driving does not only include alcohol, but also includes those who drive under the influence of marijuana.
Speeding. People who speed are in a hurry, and because they are cutting corners, they are often neglecting to look always, and devote all of their attention to the road ahead of them.
Tailgating. This is one another driver follows you too closely, and smashes into the rear of your car.
Reckless driving and aggressive driving. Aggressive drivers completely ignore the rules of the road, and forget about any duty they have to other motorists to drive carefully. These types of drivers often violate multiple laws such as changing lanes without signaling, speeding, driving on the shoulder, and more.
Inexperienced drivers. A lot of us take for granted how complicated it is to drive a motor vehicle, and some people try to jump on the Beltway or I-95 too soon. Inexperienced drivers, especially younger drivers, are statistically more likely to not only be in an accident, but the cause one.
Injuries sustained in Car Accidents in Fairfax County
People who are involved in car accidents can suffer any number of injuries, ranging from minor to major to catastrophic. It is extremely important after a car accident that you go get evaluated by a competent medical doctor. You can do this at an emergency room, urgent care center, or if necessary, your primary care doctor. But you need to see a physician who can fully and comprehensively evaluate you, to make sure that there are no internal injuries or other conditions that you don't recognize. Here are some of the more common injuries after car crashes:
Whiplash. This is a neck injury, or cervical spine injury, but often results from a rear-end Collision when the head jerks forward and backwards spraining the muscles of the neck.
Fractures. Fractures can run the gamut from hairline, to compound fractures, where a bone punctures the skin. Unless you can see some obvious deformity, fractures are usually diagnosed through x-ray imaging.
Head injuries. Head injuries can sometimes take days to manifest, and doesn't necessarily have to mean that you hit your head on something. Depending on the severity of the accident, someone's brain can actually hit the sides of their own head, and this requires a physician to diagnose. Concussions are also very common.
Burns. Burns in a car accident case often come from the deployment of airbag, since it is a explosive charge that actually deploys the airbag in most vehicles.
Internal injuries or internal bleeding. This is an injury that is not visible, and needs to be diagnosed by a doctor. This can happen from blunt-force trauma, or from punctures due to metal or other debris.
Again, if you have been involved in a car accident, you need to get to a Hospital or Urgent Care Center to be evaluated right away. Don't wait!
Steps to take after a Fairfax Car Accident
If you have been involved in a car accident in Fairfax, there are a lot of things going on around you that are vying for your attention. Follow these simple steps for your safety, and also to preserve the evidence that you will need to file a claim later on:
Step 1: Stay safe. If you can move your vehicles from the travel lanes on to the shoulder, then you should do this. If not, then generally, you want to stay inside of your vehicle until the police arrive. Even after an accident, your car is still equipped with a lot of safety features, as well as this very frame of the car, which will protect you in the event of another accident. If you choose to stand outside of your car, you could be hit by another vehicle that doesn't slow down!
Step 2: Call the police. Always notify 911 of an accident, giving them your name, location, and other pertinent information. This documents the accident, as well as the location, in case there is any question later on. Even if they decline to come out to the scene, you should always call them!
Step 3: Document the scene. Take lots of pictures with your phone, and make sure you get pictures of everything, not just your car. Get pictures of the other person's car, any debris, any signs that are nearby, and anything that may be related to the accident in any way. Don't be afraid to take pictures of skid marks, and even people!
Step 4: Exchange information. Make sure that you get the pertinent details of the drivers who are involved in this accident. Do not just take a picture of the other driver's Insurance card! The insurance card only tells you who owns the car and who is paying for the policy, not who is driving. **Always get a picture of the other motorists driver's license!**
Step 5: Get witness information. Make sure you get the name, address, telephone number, and email of any witness, including passers by and passengers. Don't rely on the police officers to document this information, or for the other driver's insurance to have it (they may not, or they may refuse to share it).
Step 6: Get medical attention. If you have an injured, then you need to see a doctor who is going to be able to diagnose as well as treat your injuries. You have to make sure that you see a doctor who is not limited in practice, like a chiropractor. You can see them later on, if needed. You need to get a comprehensive evaluation by a medical doctor at an urgent care center or emergency room!
Step 7: Consult a car accident lawyer. The Fairfax Car Accident Attorneys at Blaszkow Legal will help you to communicate with all of the insurance companies involved, so that you don't have to. All of the car insurance companies will want to speak to you after an accident, but usually it is so that they can get information from you that they can later use against you!
Medical treatment after a Car Accident
We have mentioned that you should always get evaluated by a medical doctor after a car accident, rather than going to a limited practice doctor such as a chiropractor. This is in no way meant to say that chiropractors are not fabulous medical professionals. Most of them are! However, because Virginia law limits the scope of their practice specifically to the spine, you have to see a doctor who can evaluate other injuries that a chiropractor is not trained to diagnose, such as internal injuries, head injuries, shock, nerve damage, and other conditions.
A chiropractor will often form an essential part of your treatment team if you have received injuries to your back or neck.
Paying for medical treatment after a Car Accident
When you go to the emergency room or urgent care, often someone from the Patient Registration Department will ask you questions about the car insurance companies involved. You should never give them this information! When you go to the hospital, always give them your health insurance information, including Medicare or Medicaid, if applicable. Virginia law requires that these doctors submit their bills to the health insurance company, but most of the time they will intentionally go around them. They are doing this so that they can make more money off of your accident case, as we discuss here.
You may have a copay or deductible, and you should pay this.
Many people believe that the other side will "pay" your medical expenses. That is unfortunately not true. You can claim your medical expenses that the person caused, but that will be later, at the end of your case. Always use your health insurance after an accident!
Virginia Car Accidents and contributory negligence
Virginia is a jurisdiction, just like Washington DC and Maryland, that practice a law known as contributory negligence. This means that if you are found to be even 1% responsible for the happening of the accident, then you cannot recover for your injuries from that accident. This is a high burden to bear, which is why you need to speak to a Fairfax car accident lawyer immediately.
Most insurance companies will want to speak to you, and they will often take recorded statements. You should never do this without the benefit of an experienced car accident lawyer in virginia. These statements can and will be used against you later on.
Remember that no matter how nice the insurance adjuster sound on the phone, they work for their stockholders and shareholders of that insurance company. They are not dedicated to helping you. An experienced Fairfax car accident attorney is!
Investigating Car Accidents in Fairfax
When making a civil claim, such as a car accident, the burden of proof lies with us to prove that the other side was responsible for the happening in the accident. We do this by investigating the other party's negligence. We develop evidence to prove that case, but evidence doesn't last forever. You need to speak to an attorney right away, so we can set our team to work on developing that evidence as soon as possible!
Evidence includes many things, such as pictures and videos and the statement of witnesses. However, certain things like camera footage won't last forever. Camera systems will overwrite their own footage because stores and businesses do not devote that much space to the camera's memory. Some systems will hold that footage for 30 days. It is important that we get that footage in time.
The damages that you can claim after a Fairfax Accident
When filing a claim against the negligent party after an accident in Virginia, you have the right to seek compensation for the injuries that the at-fault party caused. There are many different kinds of things that you can claim, which collectively we refer to as your damages. At Blaszkow Legal, we work hard to develop and prove our clients damages, to make the case as strong as possible. Some examples of damages include:
Medical expenses such as emergency rooms, radiologists, ambulance transport, physical therapy, chiropractor bills, prescription costs, home health device expenses, and more
Time lost from work, including sick leave and vacation leave that you had to use
Projected future medical expenses, if the doctors believe that you will need more or continuing treatment
Projected lost wages, if your medical team determines that you're not going to be able to return to work in your former capacity
Pain and suffering
Loss of enjoyment of life
State of Limitations after a Fairfax Car Accident
After you have been involved in a Virginia car accident, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit.
However, this two-year deadline is not the only deadline that you have to worry about. If your accident was caused by a government worker (local, county, state or federal), then there are other deadlines called notice deadlines that have to be met. If you miss one of these deadlines, you give the at fault party a legal excuse to attack your claim.
Always contact a lawyer immediately after an accident so you can make sure that you are preserving all of your rights, and meeting all of your legal obligations.
Contact a Fairfax Virginia Car Accident lawyer today
After a car accident in Fairfax county, you will often find yourself overwhelmed with stress and other burdens of trying to rebuild your life that has been upended by this accident. Let the experienced Fairfax Car Accident Lawyers at Blaszkow Legal guide you through the complicated process and fight for your rights. Let us hold the negligent parties accountable! We will fight for the compensation that you deserve, so you can focus on your treatment, recovery, and getting your life back on track.
Get Justice with Joe Blaszkow, and call us for a free consultation and to speak to a Fairfax car accident lawyer today.
Get Justice with Joe
Call Blaszkow Legal for a free consultation for all personal injury matters, such as:
-Slip and Falls
-Wrongful Death Claims