Experienced Indianapolis Car Accident Lawyers

Have you suffered from car accident injuries? When drivers act negligently, they endanger other motorists and can cause significant harm. Depending on the severity of a motor vehicle accident, these incidents can often be life-altering. After enduring car accident injuries, you may experience physical, emotional, mental, and financial confusion and pain. Having an experienced Indianapolis car accident attorney at your side can help make the healing process more manageable.

If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident that was not your fault, you may be eligible for financial compensation. The Indianapolis Car Accident Lawyers at Wilson Kehoe Winingham are available to help you with your car accident case.

Indianapolis Car Accidents

Indiana can be a hotspot for accidents because of its proximity to cities, long highways, and driver negligence. Looking at the state of Indiana as a whole, 43% of fatalities and 70% of non-fatalities happen in cities like Indianapolis. In 2019, Indiana drivers experienced 217,396 collisions, 739 of which resulted in fatalities.

Dangerous Driving in Indianapolis

Driver-related factors contributed to 86% of total collisions and 96% of fatal collisions in Indiana. These statistics make drivers’ actions the primary cause of car collisions, injuries, and fatalities in Indiana.

Dangerous driving includes distracted driving, speeding, reckless and/or aggressive driving (like swerving lanes and cutting other cars off), and violating traffic rules. In 2019, Theses are just a few examples of how dangerous driving can lead to life-altering impacts.

Dangerous driving in Indiana contributed to 142,162 accidents in 2019. Unsafe actions in our state are the leading cause of traffic collisions, making up 53% of total fatal accidents and 65% of non-fatal collisions. If you have been in a car accident because of someone else’s unsafe driving, you may be eligible to get the compensation you deserve.

Car Accidents Involving Fatalities and Injuries in Indianapolis

According to the most recent Indiana Crash Facts Book, 739 of the total 217,396 collisions in Indiana were fatal. The top three reasons for car-related fatalities are:

  • Head on collisions, resulting in 21.1% fatality rate and 94 deaths
  • Non-collision accidents, such as fires or overturns resulting in a 14.5% fatality rate and 19 deaths
  • Running off the road resulted in an 8.1% rate of fatality and a staggering 252 deaths.

The rate of fatalities is calculated per 1000 crashes. Other notable reasons for crashes in recent years include right angle collisions which lead to 114 deaths; 85 deaths were the consequence of rear-end collisions in 2019.

Though weather conditions can contribute to accidents, most Indiana collisions happened on clear days:

  • 500 fatal accidents happened during clear weather conditions; the next highest fatality amount is 145 in cloudy conditions
  • 596 fatal accidents happened when roads surfaces were dry
  • 371 of the 739 fatal crashes happened during the day

Fatal car accidents are traumatic and devastating. The grief one may feel after losing a loved one in a car accident can be heavy and come on suddenly. If your loved one has been in a fatal car accident, you may be eligible for a wrongful death lawsuit.

Car Accident Causes

The majority of car accidents happen due to human error, along with a variety of contributing factors. Some of the main causes for car accidents include:

  • Distracted driving (texting, talking on the phone, eating, grooming, etc.)
  • Impaired driving (operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol)
  • Speeding
  • Running red lights or stop signs
  • Reckless or aggressive driving (switching lanes too quickly, disregarding the safety of others, etc.)
  • Fatigue (sleepiness, drowsiness, or exhaustion)
  • Weather conditions (rain, snow, fog, wind, etc.)
  • Road conditions (poorly maintained roads, improper signage, etc.)
  • Vehicle defects
  • Loss of control
  • Driver illness

Knowing the most common causes of motor vehicle accidents can help keep you and your family safe on the road. Preparing for safety before getting in the car is an important part of being proactive about avoiding potential collisions.

Types of Car Accidents

Some of the most common types of car accidents include:

Car accidents of all types can lead to severe injuries, significant property damage, and even fatalities.

What to Do if You’ve Been in a Car Accident

Car crashes and other auto accidents are scary, especially if there are injuries and severe damage. If you are involved in an auto accident, take the following steps:

  • Stay calm and get to safety
  • Check for injuries
  • Call the police
  • Document the accident
  • Collect information
  • Seek medical care
  • Inform your insurance company
  • Call an attorney

Stay Calm and Get to Safety

The first thing you should do is get to a safe location as quickly as possible. If you can, move your vehicle to the side of the road. If not, leave your car where it is and make sure you and your passengers are at a safe distance and out of traffic.

Additionally, try to warn oncoming vehicles of the collision to avoid further accidents.

Check for Injuries

Check yourself, your passengers, and people in the other vehicles for injuries. Seek medical attention immediately if anyone is seriously injured. Do not try to move someone who is badly hurt unless there is immediate danger; doing so could injure someone further.

Call the Police

Contact law enforcement to file an official accident report. Notify them of any injuries so medical personnel can be dispatched, if necessary. Unless you are injured, stay at the scene and cooperate with the officer.

Document the Accident

Use your phone to take pictures and videos of the scene. Record a walk-around of your car. Also, photograph the other driver’s car, the road, skid marks, broken signs, broken guardrails, and other aspects of the accident scene.

It is also helpful to keep a diary of all significant details concerning the accident. This evidence will be helpful for your auto accident case. Make a list of damaged property, write down traffic and weather conditions, and describe the position of cars and length of any skid marks you see.

If you are injured and would like to file a lawsuit, continuing to document your injuries on a daily or weekly basis can act as evidence for your case. Keep detailed descriptions of how your daily life has been impacted. This can verify your experience to the judge and court.

Collect Information

Record the following information concerning the accident:

  • Names and contact information of all drivers and passengers involved in the accident
  • License plate number, make, and model of all vehicles involved in the accident
  • Insurance information of all drivers involved in the accident
  • Names and badge numbers of all police officers at the scene
  • Service or reference number of the official accident report
  • Names and contact information of any witnesses

These notes are crucial to building a successful case. Your attorneys will use this information in their investigation.

Seek Medical Care

It’s important to get checked by a doctor, even if you don’t have any noticeable injuries. Injuries from a car accident could take days or months to appear. Don’t wait until you are in pain to see a doctor. Get a quick checkup as soon as you can after the accident. 

Inform Your Insurance Company

Make a thorough accident report to your automobile insurance company. However, when speaking with the insurance adjuster, don’t sign any documents or give any statements. Anything you say could be used against you in the future. 

Call an Attorney

Contact an experienced Indiana auto accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident. At WKW, we specialize in assisting people who have been injured in an Indiana car crash. Our team can help you navigate the complexities of personal injury law and determine if you can seek compensation for your injuries.

Car Accident Compensation

If you were injured in an Indiana car crash and your accident was caused by the negligence of another driver, you may be entitled to compensation. Car accident settlements vary depending on the damages and injuries that result from the crash. The compensation you may receive can support you in covering your expenses.

Types of Car Accident Compensation and Damages

There are two main types of auto compensation you may be entitled to following an accident. Victims can recover economic and non-economic damages.

Economic damages, which are also called special damages, cover losses that have a quantifiable dollar amount. These damages include:

  1. Medical expenses
  2. Vehicle damages
  3. Lost wages or income
  4. Hospital bills
  5. Property damage
  6. Car rental and towing costs
  7. Rehabilitation costs

Non-economic damages, also known as general damages, do not have an exact dollar amount. Damages you could get covered include the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of companionship
  • Mental anguish
  • Lower quality of life
  • Long-term disability
  • Fear or anger

How is Compensation for a Car Accident Calculated?

Some damages are straightforward to calculate due to their economic nature. Other costs, such as pain and suffering, are more difficult to quantify. An experienced Indiana car accident lawyer can help you determine what compensation you could receive.

Compensation costs for economic damages are easier to calculate because there is a quantifiable number. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, can be more complicated to estimate because they are not quantifiable. There are two methods of calculating compensation for general damages:

  1. Multiplier Method: to do the multiplier method, you add up all economic damages, then multiply that number between 1.5 and 5 depending on the severity of the damages. Severity is determined by the evidence your lawyer presents, which is what makes collecting information imperative after a collision
  2. Per Diem Method: Also called the per day method, the compensation you may receive depends on each day that you may experience pain after your accident.

Calculating general damages can seem subjective; having an experienced attorney by your side to present your evidence to your insurance provider or in a settlement is strongly advised.

How Can a Car Accident Attorney Help?

Auto accident cases can quickly become complicated. There can be many factors at play, and determining liability is difficult when there might be more than one driver at fault. You need to be represented by a law firm with the experience and resources to build a strong case so that you can secure compensation for your injuries.

Filing a Car Accident Lawsuit

After a car accident, you may feel overwhelmed—medical bills, car repairs, calls from insurance agents, and low settlement offers can all pile up until it seems impossible to get the compensation you deserve. The attorneys at WKW can help you understand your rights and walk you through the process of the car accident lawsuit in order to build a successful case so you can focus on your recovery.

When possible, we will negotiate a settlement. However, if all parties cannot agree on a fair settlement offer, we will take our significant trial experience to court and fight for reasonable compensation.

Car Accident Lawsuit Process

Litigation in car accidents differ case by case because your experience is unique to you. Although cases are independent from one another, the general order of proceedings goes:

  1. Complaint

Writing a complaint initiates the litigation process. A complaint is filed to the court, then you must give it to the defendant.

  1. Response

Once you have found the defendant and given them the official complaint, they then need to respond to you.

  1. Discovery

Analyzing evidence is the discovery portion of the lawsuit process. The timeline for discovery may last between a few months to over a year.

  1. Trial

Once all evidence is examined, a court trial will take place. Both parties will present evidence for a jury to determine a verdict.

  1. Potential Appeal

If either party is unsatisfied with the verdict, then there is a possibility of an appeal. Appeals can take additional months or years. If this is the case, the experienced lawyers at WKW can help for the compensation you deserve.

How Is Fault Determined in a Car Accident in Indiana?

Indiana uses tort liability, which is at fault liability. Tort law means that fault is determined based on the percentage of fault each driver has. The percentage you are at fault is the amount that you will either pay or receive in compensation.

Indiana requires all drivers to have a minimum of $25,000–$50,000 for injury and $10,000 for property damage. Fault is determined by establishing negligence of a driver; this is proven by presenting evidence. An experienced lawyer will be able to review your evidence and help present it to insurance companies.

Investigating a Car Accident

When the lawyers at WKW investigate an accident, we always start at the actual crash scene. Going straight to an attorney will help with preserving the scene. Reporting the accident to the police is an important step to take after a car accident. Yet, police reports are considered inadmissible in court.

In personal injury lawsuits, the more high-quality evidence there is in your case, the better. Experienced auto accident attorneys can assist in investigating car accidents to prove your eligibility for compensation.

Car Accident Settlements and Negotiations

A car accident settlement negotiation is an agreement between the parties involved in an auto accident. The settlement can be between a victim and the negligent party or the negligent party’s insurance company. To negotiate a settlement:

  • Collect evidence and contact your personal injury attorney.
  • Send a demand letter. A demand letter is a professional document that requests payment or another demand at the fault of the opposing party.
  • When you send a demand letter, the insurance company may respond in one of four ways: they can accept your demands and pay accordingly; they will counter-offer which you will respond to; they will deny your claim and refuse to pay; or they will not respond. Ask your attorney how you should respond to further and complete the settlement.

Car accident settlement timelines vary case by case, but typically last one to three months. Settlements, rather than court cases, can save both parties money and time.

Car Accident FAQs

What Kind of Injuries Are Caused by Car Accidents?

The following are the most common car accident injuries:

Some of these injuries, such as back or neck injuries, may not be apparent in the immediate aftermath of the accident. Instead, they could show up days or weeks later.

What Steps Should I Take After Being in an Auto Accident?

Car crashes and other auto accidents are scary, especially if there are injuries and severe damage. If you are involved in an auto accident take the following steps.

Steps to Take After an Auto Accident in Indiana:

  • Stay Calm and Get to Safety
  • Check for Injuries
  • Call the Police
  • Document the Accident
  • Collect Information
  • Seek Medical Care
  • Inform Your Insurance Company
  • Call an Attorney

Stay Calm and Get to Safety

It’s easy to get overwhelmed, but don’t panic. The first thing you should do is get to a safe location as quickly as possible. If you can, move your vehicle off the road. If not, leave your car where it is and make sure you and your passengers are at a safe distance.

Additionally, try to warn oncoming vehicles of the collision to avoid further accidents.

Check for Injuries

Check yourself, your passengers, and people in the other vehicles for injuries. Seek medical attention immediately if anyone is seriously injured. Do not try to move someone who is badly hurt unless there is immediate danger; you don’t want to risk injuring someone further.

Call the Police

Contact law enforcement so an official accident report can be filed. Notify them of any injuries so medical personnel can be dispatched, if necessary. Unless you are injured, stay at the scene and cooperate with the officer.

Document the Accident

Use your phone to take pictures and videos of the scene. Record a walk-around of your car. Also, photograph the other driver’s car, the road, skid marks, broken signs, broken guardrails, and other parts of the accident scene.

Keep a diary of all significant details concerning the accident. This evidence will be helpful for your auto accident case. Make a list of damaged property, write down traffic and weather conditions, and describe the position of cars and length of any skid marks you see.

Collect Information

Record the following information concerning the accident:

  • Names and contact information of all drivers and passengers involved in the accident
  • License plate number, make, and model of all vehicles involved in the accident
  • Insurance information of all drivers involved in the accident
  • Names and badge numbers of all police officers at the scene
  • Service or reference number of the official accident report
  • Names and contact information of any witnesses

These notes are crucial to build a successful case. Your attorneys will use this information in their investigation.

Seek Medical Care

It’s important to get checked by a doctor, even if you don’t have any noticeable injuries. Injuries from a car accident could take days or months to appear. Don’t wait until you are in pain to see a doctor. Get a quick checkup as soon as you can after the accident.

Inform Your Insurance Company

Make a thorough accident report to your automobile insurance company. However, when speaking with the insurance adjuster, don’t sign any documents or give any statements. Anything could be used against you in the future.

Call an Attorney

Contact an experienced Indiana auto accident attorney as soon as possible after your accident. At WKW, we specialize in assisting people who have been injured in an Indiana car crash. Our team can help you navigate the complexities of personal injury law and understand if you can seek compensation for your injuries.

How Should I Deal with Insurance Companies?

Dealing with Insurance Companies

It’s important to have a qualified attorney negotiate a claim with insurance companies on your behalf. Our years of legal experience will be put to work to stand up against aggressive insurance companies.

Avoid communicating with anyone other than your attorney and your insurance company about the accident. If you get a call from another lawyer or an agent from the other driver’s insurance company, direct them to your attorney. Talking to anyone could negatively affect your case.

Does Indiana Have a Statute of Limitations?

Indiana Statute of Limitations

Indiana has a set of laws dictating when you can file lawsuits in court. These deadlines are called statutes of limitations. The statute of limitations differs among states and are based on the type of claim you are filing.

For car accidents, the Indiana statute of limitations is two years from the day of the accident. There are some exceptions to this rule, such as if your accident involved a government vehicle.

Because of this strict deadline, you should contact an attorney as quickly as possible after your accident.

Can I Afford to Hire a Car Accident Law Firm?

We offer free initial case reviews, and our firm works on a contingency fee basis, meaning that we do not get paid unless your case is successful. Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.

Reach Out to WKW to Speak with an Experienced Car Accident Attorney in Indianapolis

Our dedicated team of lawyers has been recognized and awarded for their work. Three of our attorneys have been named Indiana Super Lawyers, two of whom have been included in the Top 10 Indiana Super Lawyers list. WKW partners Bruce Kehoe and Bill Winingham have also been recognized as “Lawyer of the Year” for Indianapolis in Best Lawyers. It is this standard of excellence and dedication that we will bring to your car accident case.

With over 30 years of practice, the auto accident attorneys at WKW will investigate and analyze every part of your case and make sure you get the assistance you need to be successful. Whether your case is negotiated at settlement or brought to trial, WKW is ready for the challenge.

With extensive experience in auto accidents and injuries, the attorneys at Wilson Kehoe Winingham can help you get the compensation you deserve. We serve clients through the Indianapolis area as well as in Kokomo, South Bend, Ft. Wayne, Muncie, Terre Haute, Richmond, Evansville, Bloomington, and Anderson. In the event of a tragic accident, let the legal team at WKW work toward the best possible outcome for your case.

Call 317.920.6400 or fill out an online contact form for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.


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