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Eugene Car Accident Attorney

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Motor Vehicle Accidents

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We Represent Injured Car Crash Victims in Eugene & Throughout Oregon. Call 503-546-3167 for a FREE case review.

With the Willamette River providing the perfect backdrop, there are many innovators, artists, and visionaries in Eugene. The city is full of inspiration and that can be seen in how the municipality strives towards a sustainable future and accessible growth plans. Along with its rich culture, the city has also been dubbed as “TrackTown USA” due to the many elite athletes that visit from around the world to train. The Huffington Post has also called Eugene, “the city where everyone runs.

There is no doubt that Eugene Oregon has something to offer to everyone. Unfortunately, the diverse culture in the city is sometimes marred by collisions on the road. After a car accident, you will likely feel very stressed, upset, and confused. A car accident can leave you with serious personal injuries that are extremely costly and painful. Those injuries will incur high medical bills and you may not be able to return back to work right away to pay for them. You may be able to file a claim for compensation after a collision. However, these claims are not easy to file. Below you will find some important laws that you need to know straight from our Eugene car accident lawyers!

Claiming Personal Injury Protection After an Auto Accident

The state law in Oregon states that all motorists must purchase a certain amount of auto insurance. This insurance includes a certain amount of liability for bodily injury and property damage, uninsured motorist insurance, and personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. All of which are to be used in case of auto accidents.

Immediately following the car accident, you can file a claim with your own insurer to receive personal injury protection benefits. As long as you have purchased the required minimum amount, you can collect up to $15,000 in benefits. You can collect this type of compensation even if you contributed to the crash, and you can receive them fairly quickly. But is that always going to be enough to cover your medical bills?

The cost of a serious injury often exceeds $15,000, and PIP benefits will not provide full compensation for damages such as pain and suffering. Under tort law in Oregon, you can also file a claim for additional damages against the liable party so you obtain the maximum compensation you are entitled to. That is where we come in! Our Eugene car accident attorneys will sit down with you to talk about your options and how we can help get your the fair compensation you deserve!

Comparative Fault Law in Oregon

As in all other states, the law in Oregon recognizes that more than one party may be to blame for a crash. In the Beaver State, accident victims can still file a lawsuit, using a car accident lawyer, against liable parties if they were partly at fault for the collision. This is known as the comparative fault law. Under this law, you can still file a claim against the negligent party as long as they were more at fault for the crash than you. If you were more than 51 percent to blame for the crash, you cannot file a claim for damages.

If it is found that you did carry some portion of blame for the collision, but it was less than 51 percent, any damages you are entitled to are reduced. The reduction will reflect your percentage of fault. For example, if you were awarded $100,000 after a crash, but you were 20 percent at fault for the accident, those damages would be reduced by 20 percent. In total, you would receive $80,000 in damages.

The Statute of Limitations on Car Accident Claims in Eugene, Oregon

While you can file a lawsuit, using a personal injury attorney, against a negligent party after a car accident, you only have a certain amount of time to do so. In Eugene, as throughout the rest of Oregon, you have only two years to file your claim after a crash. This is known as the statute of limitations, or time limit. If as a personal injury client you do not file your crash within two years, you will likely be unable to claim for any damages or lost wages at all from the negligent party.

The statute of limitations law is very strict. Although there are some exceptions to it, they are very limited. It is critical to speak to a Eugene personal injury attorney as soon as possible after a collision. Personal injury lawyers will ensure your claim is filed properly and on time so it is never placed in jeopardy. If you have further questions about your car accident case or how to work with your insurance company, contact us for your free consultation!

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Caps on Non-Economic Damages

The legal statutes in Oregon place a cap, or limit, of $500,000 in non-economic damages in personal injury claims. Non-economic damages are those that do not have an actual dollar value, such as pain and suffering. While the statutes are very clear about this law, case law is not. The Oregon Supreme Court has made many rulings striking down the cap, claiming it unconstitutional. The Court has ruled many times, and most recently in 2020, that injury victims should be able to claim compensation that will fully cover the cost of their injuries.

Don’t miss out on these common personal injury mistakes.

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Testimonials

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Sally Martinez September 28, 2020

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– Michelle E.

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Mr. Johnston and his firm were incredibly thorough in getting us a fair settlement from our insurance company with little to no pressure. We really appreciated having someone who truly cared about us every step of the way. I would highly recommend the Johnston Law Firm to anyone in need of personal injury representation.

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Our Car Accident Attorney in Eugene, Oregon Will Uphold Your Rights

There are many laws that govern car accidents and people do not always know what they are. At Johnston Law Firm, our Eugene, car accident attorneys can advise you of the law, and how it applies to your case so you can claim the full settlement you deserve. Call us now at 503-496-7989 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

Car Accident FAQs

Car accidents can be extremely stressful events. Following a collision, many victims are unsure of what to do, especially if they have suffered injuries. Injuries from a car crash can be severe and can require extensive medical care, keep you from working, and have long-lasting effects. The following are some frequently asked questions that car accident victims often have regarding recovery for their losses.

The scene of an accident is often chaotic, but it is important to remain as calm as possible and take certain steps to protect your health and your legal rights. If emergency medical personnel advise you to go for emergency care, you should listen to them and seek the necessary medical treatment. If you can remain on the scene, you should do the following:

  • Wait for law enforcement and give them your side of the story;
  • Collect the names and contact information of witnesses and anyone involved in the collision;
  • Take photos of the scene and make notes of any unusual weather or road conditions;
  • Seek a medical evaluation to ensure any injuries are timely diagnosed.

Any party that acted negligently and contributed to causing the accident may be held responsible for your medical expenses and other losses. Some examples of negligent parties in collisions include the following:

  • Distracted drivers;
  • Drunk drivers;
  • Aggressive drivers;
  • Drivers who violated traffic laws;
  • Government entities that failed to maintain, inspect, or repair the roads;
  • Auto manufacturers that sold defective brakes, tires, airbags, or other pertinent auto parts.

It is highly important to identify the correct negligent party so that you can seek compensation from them. The action you take to seek recovery can vary based on whether the liable party is a person, a company, or the local government.

When you make a claim with the responsible party’s insurance company, you will likely receive a settlement offer. Many people believe their only option is to accept the offer, however, accepting a settlement that does not fully cover all of your losses can result in financial disaster. Once you accept a settlement, you will have to sign a release that waives your right to file a subsequent lawsuit. Therefore, if the settlement is too low, you will have no other way of obtaining compensation and will be responsible for paying your own medical bills and incurring your other losses with no legal relief. Unfortunately, many insurance companies begin with a low offer, so you should always review settlement offers with an experienced attorney before accepting. A lawyer can then negotiate with the insurance company to try to obtain the maximum settlement.

In many collisions, more than one driver makes an error that contributes to the accident. Fortunately, Oregon law allows victims to recover even if they were partially at fault, though they will not be able to recover for the full amount of their losses. Instead, the court will determine what percentage of fault is attributable to you and will decrease your compensation by that percentage.

For example, imagine that one driver suddenly slams on their brakes for no reason in the middle of the highway. The car behind the braking vehicle would have had time to stop, except that the driver was sending a text message at the time and was not looking at the road. By the time they look up, it is too late to stop and a collision occurs. This is a common example of a situation in which a driver may be partially at fault but may still be able to recover for some of their losses.

Like the majority of legal cases, there is time limit–called the statute of limitations–set out in Oregon law. Specifically, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a claim for personal injury against the negligent party. If you miss this deadline, you will likely lose your right to recover.

Wrongful death is one that is caused by the negligent or reckless acts of another, or due to someone failing to take the appropriate precautions that could have prevented the death from occurring.

Contact Johnston Law Firm to Speak with an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer

Act quickly and call Johnston Law Firm at 503-713-6839 or fill out our free confidential case evaluation form. We’re highly rated, and offer a free initial consultation, and flexible hours by appointment. We look forward to helping you with your car accident claim.

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