Injured in an Accident? Trust our Oklahoma City Legal Team.
If you suffered a serious injury or lost a loved one in a car accident in Oklahoma City, you should not have to pay out of pocket for medical care, damaged property, and other expenses that inevitably pile up following a serious accident. You and your family might qualify to receive monetary compensation for your medical bills and treatment, lost wages, suffering, and other damages if the accident was caused by another person’s reckless and negligent actions. A compassionate, knowledgeable personal injury attorney at the Abel Law Firm will thoroughly review the details of case your case for free and help guide you through the legal process.
Since 1976, the Oklahoma City car accident lawyers at the Abel Law Firm have handled thousands of cases taken on all over the state of Oklahoma. We have garnered a reputation for our knowledge and skill in navigating the most complex areas of personal injury law. The attorneys at our firm have an AVVO rating of 10 and are listed as Super Lawyers.
For more than 40 years, the Abel Law Firm has dedicated our efforts toward the Oklahoma City community. We see the people we represent as our family and friends. We work tirelessly to protect the rights of Oklahoma City residents who have suffered a traumatic car accident and are prepared to do the same for you. If you’re considering legal representation for your car accident case, an attorney at the Abel Law Firm will provide you with comprehensive and efficient guidance during this trying time. When you’re involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault, it’s possible that another party may owe you compensation. To begin working on your case, contact an Oklahoma City personal injury attorney from the Abel Law Firm. Call us today at (405) 239-7046, fill out our email form, or chat live with a representative to schedule a free initial consultation.
Do I Need a Car Accident Attorney?
At the Abel Law Firm, we recommend that any injured victim or family member who has lost a loved one as a result of a car accident seek the legal guidance of an experienced attorney. As an injured victim, you may be legally entitled to receive compensation to cover some of the costs you’ve incurred because of another party’s negligence or recklessness.
Without a skilled attorney, it’s unlikely you’ll receive the full compensation you deserve as those who venture into the legal process alone are typically awarded much less. Insurance companies are often motivated to offer lump-sum settlements quickly. If you do not know how much your claim is worth, you are vulnerable to accepting a settlement that is not large enough to pay for all your future expenses. An Oklahoma City accident lawyer will estimate your future costs, place a value on any non-economic damages, and negotiate with the other parties to get you the maximum amount of compensation possible.
The legal process can be especially daunting for those who attempt to settle on their own, which is why you should entrust this task to a law firm with decades of experience. This may be your first time filing an injury claim, but it certainly isn’t ours. Let us handle the paperwork, phone calls with the insurance company and negotiations so that you can recover from your injury with peace of mind. We provide free initial consultations and guarantee that your case will be handled effectively.
Why Choose Abel Law Firm to Handle My Case?
There are many Oklahoma City car accident firms to choose from. However, not all law firms are able to deliver consistent results to their clients. The following qualities set the Abel Law Firm in a tier above the rest:
Experience: Few firms in Oklahoma City can claim the same level of success and reputation that the Abel Law Firm has acquired in the last four decades. The attorneys at our firm have over 150 years of combined experience. Our partners and associates specialize in various practice areas of personal injury law and are prepared to use their combined skills towards your case.
Track record: The attorneys at our firm have a record of success in the many cases they are asked to take on. Some substantial settlements and verdicts awarded to our clients are $3,000,000 for auto negligence involving the death of a child, $1,973,020 for auto negligence involving severe injuries, and $925,000 for auto negligence involving texting while driving.
Client satisfaction: At the Abel Law Firm, our legal staff treats our clients with compassion and is sympathetic towards their current situation. We work hard to ensure our clients feel there is an open line of communication and understanding during this difficult time. Read what our past clients have to say in their testimonials about their experience with our firm.
Our award-winning team: The attorneys at the Abel Law Firm have earned a national reputation for their work on behalf of those who have suffered car accident-related injuries. Ed Abel currently has the highest rating by the Martindale peer review system and was also president of the Oklahoma Trial Lawyers Association. T. Luke Abel and has an AVVO rating of 10. Our attorneys are Super Lawyers and members of the American Association for Justice.
What To Do After a Car Accident
It seems like you can never fully prepare for the hardships you’re forced to face after a car crash. Physical pain, emotional trauma, and medical debt are just some of the after-effects that can upend your entire life. The immediate aftermath of an accident can leave you feeling confused, overwhelmed, and disoriented. Don’t let the shock of what just happened to you cloud your judgment. The steps you take next are crucial in protecting your rights.
Medical Treatment – Seeking medical care after an accident is critical. An ambulance can transport you from the accident scene, or you might be able to drive yourself to a hospital. Your injury might not seem like an imminent threat, but you should take it seriously. There could be internal damage or underlying issues that you can’t see.
The emergency room doctor will evaluate your condition and determine the type of treatment you will need. Follow their orders and follow up with the doctors they refer you to. Continue your treatment plan until your medical providers release you from their care. It’s essential that you don’t skip your appointments or decide on your own that you don’t need to see your doctors anymore. The insurance company could use your non-compliance as evidence that your injury isn’t serious. They might deny your claim or provide a low settlement offer in response.
Hire A Lawyer – Handling your case without seeking legal representation can hurt you in the long run. There’s a specific process you must follow, strict deadlines to observe, and extensive paperwork to complete. You likely won’t know the maximum compensation you deserve and might jump on the first settlement offer you receive, even if it doesn’t adequately cover your expenses.
Abel Law Firm has access to various resources and the necessary experience to investigate your case and determine its monetary value. We will advocate for your rights and fight hard to ensure the insurance company pays what they owe you. If our efforts are met with resistance, we are fully prepared to file a lawsuit and take your case to court.
Maintain All Records – Don’t throw out any documentation related to your case. Medical records are a vital piece of evidence after a car accident. You need them to prove you sustained injuries and required medical treatment to recover. Keep a copy of your medical bills, prescription costs, and receipts for the out-of-pocket expenses you incurred. All could be useful in showing the amount of the settlement you need to compensate for your total losses.
Abel Law Firm can also collect various documents during our investigation. While you’re still attending your doctor’s appointments, you should send us a detailed list of all medical providers, facilities, and treatment dates so we can request all records associated with your treatment. If you begin seeing a new doctor, be sure to let us know so the records we submit to the insurance company don’t show any gaps in treatment.
We Know How To Investigate Car Accidents Thoroughly
The first step we will take when you hire us is to investigate the crash. If there’s an available police report, we can reconstruct the accident scene and determine who was at fault. We’ll obtain evidence to prove our findings and show the impact the accident has had on your life.
Depending on the facts of your case, we might gather the following evidence:
- Accident scene evidence and photos
- Police reports
- Statements from people who witnessed the collision
- Video surveillance or security camera footage
- Your medical records and other documentation
- Lost wage reports from the times you missed work
- At-fault driver’s chemical test results, cell phone records, and other useful evidence proving they caused the accident
- Damage estimates for all vehicles
- Auto insurance policy information
Our Oklahoma City car accident lawyers understand the importance of recovering full and fair compensation for your expenses. You should not be responsible for the economic hardships you’ve faced. The at-fault driver or other negligent party should suffer the consequences of their actions.
Possible Compensation In A Car Accident Case
Many accident victims can’t afford medical treatment. Figuring out where to get the money for physical therapy, surgery, prescriptions, and other expenses can cause undue stress. You shouldn’t go into debt because of another driver’s carelessness.
We know the many obstacles you can face while pursuing compensation after a car crash. Insurance companies typically place their own interests over a claimant’s needs. They might not treat you fairly during the process or offer the settlement you need to pay for your medical bills and associated costs. Abel Law Firm wants to ensure you don’t pay for anything out-of-pocket. Our goal is to seek the maximum available money to compensate for your past and future losses, such as:
- Medical bills
- Property damage
- Mental anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Loss of enjoyment of life
You should understand going into an insurance claim that there might not be enough money available to cover everything. Most auto insurance policies only include $25,000 in coverage. That’s the state-required minimum liability limit. If your losses total $40,000, that won’t even come close to paying for your expenses.
Fortunately, there are other options. Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) is coverage available to accident victims when the at-fault driver doesn’t have liability insurance or high enough limits to satisfy your total losses. It’s an optional insurance, so you should check your policy to determine if you’re covered. You could receive a settlement for your medical bills or compensation if you lost your loved one in a car accident. UM doesn’t cover property damage, but your collision coverage could pay for repair costs.
If your loved one died in a car accident someone else caused, you might be entitled to compensation in a wrongful death lawsuit. The losses you could pursue are:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of companionship
- Pain and suffering the deceased experienced from their fatal injury
- Lost wages and benefits the deceased would have earned if they survived the accident
- Punitive damages
The only person allowed to pursue a wrongful death case is the personal representative of the deceased’s estate. They must represent the interests of your loved one and any heirs or beneficiaries to the estate. The court could appoint a representative if one were never assigned, and it’s typically a surviving family member, such as a spouse or child.
Types of Car Accident Cases We Handle
The unfortunate truth is that all drivers and passengers are at risk of being involved in an accident each time they take to the road. Because of the inherent danger that accompanies commuting, all drivers should stay alert, sober, and cautious when they are behind the wheel.
The smallest oversight can result in life-changing injuries or death to those involved in an accident. When another person’s error leaves you coping with a new set of challenges, we are ready to help. Despite the vast number of accidents that happen daily in America, each and every case is unique. They can have many underlying causes, including:
- Driver Error – Drivers must remain focused behind the wheel and obey all traffic signs and signals. Running a red light or failing to yield the right of way could lead to a catastrophic accident.
- Reckless Driving – Oklahoma statute § 47-11-901 defines reckless driving as operating a motor vehicle wantonly or carelessly without regard for another person’s safety or property. Examples of reckless driving include weaving in and out of traffic and road rage.
- Drunk Driving – Alcohol can significantly impair a person’s driving abilities, leading to a slower reaction time, poor decision-making skills, and reduced motor skills.
- Pedestrian Accidents – Pedestrians can suffer severe injuries or death when a car crashes into them. A driver might blow through a stop sign or become distracted by their cell phone, preventing them from noticing someone crossing the street ahead.
- Car Defects or Malfunctions – Defective parts result from manufacturer negligence. An error during the design, manufacturing, or marketing phase can create a defect, causing the vehicle to function incorrectly.
- Highway Defects – Potholes, cracked pavement, and other issues lead to hazardous conditions for motorists. Lack of proper maintenance and repairs leads to road defects that cause accidents.
- Hit and Run Accidents – A driver who flees the scene of an accident not only breaks the law but also puts the occupants of other vehicles in danger. Abel Law Firm knows how to investigate this type of case and track down the at-fault driver or determine other options for recovering compensation.
- Drugged Driver Accidents – Illegal drugs, over-the-counter medication, and prescriptions could cause symptoms that prevent a person from driving safely. Common side effects of seemingly harmless drugs are drowsiness, headaches, and blurry vision.
- Distracted Driving Accidents – Anything that redirects a driver’s attention or focus from the task of driving is a form of distracted driving. 1,413 people sustained injuries or died due to distracted driving in 2018.
- Rear-End Collisions– Tailgating typically leads to one driver colliding with the back of another person’s car. Without adequate space between both vehicles, avoiding an accident is nearly impossible if traffic comes to a standstill.
- Speeding Accidents – Driving above the speed limit or too fast for conditions gives a motorist less time to react to a road hazard or a stopped vehicle ahead. The violent impact of two cars colliding at excessive speeds can lead to severe injuries and fatalities.
- Accident with an Underinsured/Uninsured Driver – Even though laws require purchasing liability insurance, you could end up in an accident with an uninsured driver. Our Oklahoma City car accident attorneys are familiar with the options for recovering compensation after this type of accident.
- Rollover Accidents – Cars with a high center of gravity are susceptible to rolling over after crashing into another vehicle, stationary object, or road hazard. However, any vehicle could roll under the right circumstances.
- T-Bone Collisions – A T-bone accident occurs when one vehicle crashes head first into the side of another. The occupants of the impacted car could become pinned between the crushed metal, causing devastating injuries.
- Single Car Accidents – Many factors could lead to an accident involving only one car. While the driver’s actions could be the reason for a crash, another driver, pedestrian, or malfunctioning traffic light could also play a role.
- Multi-Vehicle Accidents – Accidents involving more than two cars can cause massive destruction. Multiple parties typically suffer injuries requiring medical treatment to heal. It can be challenging determining who’s at fault when there are multiple drivers, but Abel Law Firm has experience handling this type of investigation.
What To Do After a Car Accident
The moments immediately following a car accident are crucial to protect your safety and your rights. The following steps ensure that your health and legal standing are protected:
- Call 911: Call the police to come help document the scene. If you or another party involved are seriously injured, make sure to request an ambulance. The responding police officer will secure the scene and make a report. This police report will be important if you later choose to bring legal action in the form of a civil suit, so request a copy of it.
- Document the Scene: If you are not in need of emergency services and are able, document the scene to the best of your ability. Taking photographs of the damage and scene from different angles provides a valuable perspective on how the accident occurred.
- Exchange Information: Though the responding officer will typically collect all involved parties’ contact information, it is always a good idea to go ahead and exchange names, phone numbers, and emails with other involved parties and any witnesses.
- Seek Medical Care: No matter if you think you are suffering from serious injuries or not, it is smart to have a doctor evaluate you following a collision. Some accidents leave victims with injuries that can’t be seen, such as concussions. Additionally, a medical evaluation has a practical function as far as your legal status is concerned. If you decide to file an injury claim but do not have proof of a medical evaluation, the at-fault party’s insurer or lawyer may question the severity or cause of your injuries.
- Report the Accident to your Insurer: Your car insurance company will need to be notified of the accident. Many companies have made reporting collisions easier than ever with mobile applications, user-friendly web interfaces, or a dedicated phone line. Notify them of your accident as soon as you are able.
- Keep Records: Any notices, bills, and statements that you receive related to your accident should be kept in one place. In the event that you decide to take legal action to hold the at-fault party responsible, a digital or physical paper trail of your expenses is essential.
- Speak with an Injury Lawyer: The guidance of a skilled lawyer will alleviate you of both the legal and administrative burden of managing your case. Not only will your lawyer be able to help you make sense of your options, but they will improve your legal outcome.
- Keep a Journal: If journaling isn’t something you practice in your personal life, this may feel like an odd suggestion. However, jotting down what you remember of the events surrounding the accident in addition to chronicling your recovery is an important benchmark in proving how your injuries are impacting you.
Even if you are unable to complete all of these steps, be sure to contact a lawyer. They can guide you in the right direction no matter the circumstances of your case.
Oklahoma Car Accident Statistics
The State of Oklahoma Highway Safety Office publishes statistics for car accidents that occur on Oklahoma roadways. Here are a few facts related to car accidents in Oklahoma from 2018, the most recent year for which data is available:
- In 2018, there were 655 statewide accident-related fatalities 657 lives lost the previous year.
- Driving impaired by drugs or alcohol was the source of the most fatalities, 158 deaths.
- Unsafe speed was a factor in 133 deaths.
- Large trucks were involved in 107 lost lives.
- 4% of fatality victims in passenger vehicles and pickup trucks were not wearing safety belts or child restraints.
- 195 crashes occurred per day in 2018, killing nearly two people and injuring 89 every 24 hours.
- Eight crashes occurred every hour, and one fatality occurred every 13.4 hours.
- More collisions occurred in October than any other month, and more on Friday than any other day of the week.
- The highest number of crashes occurred in the hour between 5:00 pm and 6:00 pm.
- Friday and Saturday had the highest rate of fatalities on Oklahoma roads.
- June was the deadliest month for drivers.
- The times of day with the most fatalities were the hour between 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm and the hour between 6:00 pm and 7:00 pm.
- The worst day for fatalities on Oklahoma roads in 2018 was Saturday, July 28. Seven people were killed in seven different crashes.
- One drove a pickup truck and was wearing their seatbelt.
- One drove a Sports Utility Vehicle and didn’t wear a seatbelt.
- One was a minor child in a car who was properly buckled into his car seat.
- Two motorcyclists were killed. One was wearing a helmet, and one was not.
- One person died on a bicycle, and one was a pedestrian.
- Of the seven crashes, alcohol was a factor in three deaths, and another was related to drug use.
These statistics reveal that while it is crucial to wear seat belts and drive responsibly, the negligence of other drivers can often lead to injury and death, even if you do everything right. All drivers and passengers are vulnerable to injury in a car accident, but you have legal options. It’s important to have an experienced Oklahoma accident attorney on your side if you or a loved one is involved in such a crash.
Injuries You Could Suffer in Car Accidents
The types of injuries seen in car accident victims vary widely, ranging from minor to incredibly severe and life-changing. Some typical injuries in a highway accident include:
- Cuts, bruises, and scrapes
- Bone fractures and breaks
- Whiplash from sudden stops, causing neck and spinal cord damage
- Spinal injuries, possibly leading to partial or full paralysis
- Head and brain trauma from blunt impacts, sometimes leading to permanent brain damage
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and mental trauma related to the crash
Always get immediate medical attention after a car crash. It’s often a good idea to keep records of your injuries and the pain you experience. You should also take photographs of your condition as soon as possible after the accident.
Deadline for Filing A Civil Lawsuit
An insurance claim isn’t your only option for pursuing compensation after a car accident. You might be able to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. There is a timeframe for filing this type of legal case known as a statute of limitations. The statute of limitations in Oklahoma is two years. That means you only have two years from the accident date to sue. If the statutory time limit passes before you file suit, you could lose your right to compensation.
Frequently Asked Questions
A serious injury can quickly complicate your life. If you are serious about finding the right lawyer, we know you have questions. We’ve compiled some frequently asked questions for your convenience. However, to discuss your case in more detail with one of our car accident lawyers, give us a call today at (405) 239-7046 for a free case evaluation.
Can I Afford to Hire a Lawyer from Abel Law Firm?
Yes. We know that as an injury victim, you are already dealing with a somewhat sensitive financial situation. Medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage all come with a pretty serious sticker price. That is why the injury attorneys at Abel Law Firm work on a contingency basis. This means that we don’t have any fees up front. You only pay us for our services if we are able to successfully secure a favorable settlement or verdict for you. In the event that we fail to recover any compensation, you will never owe us anything.
What if I Was Partially at Fault?
Oklahoma Statute Title 23 §13-14 outlines that under the doctrine of comparative negligence, your award will be reduced according to the percentage you are found at fault for the accident. If you are more than 50% responsible for the accident, you will be barred from recovering any compensation. This means that if you incur $100,000 of damages and you are found 25% responsible for the accident, you will only be able to recover $75,000.
When Should I Seek Medical Treatment?
Seek medical treatment as soon as possible following a collision. Even if you believe that your injuries are not serious, if you plan on taking legal action against the party that caused your accident, it is important that you have your medical condition evaluated. Moreover, many injuries related to collisions are not accompanied by apparent external injuries. If a head injury like a concussion goes undiagnosed and untreated, the consequences could ultimately be fatal.
The Oklahoma City car accident lawyers at the Abel Law Firm will fight for you. Our personal injury lawyers have represented thousands of car accident victims and families. We understand how emotionally difficult it can be to recover from a car accident. We’ve also witnessed firsthand how injury victims and their families have benefitted from the knowledge of a reliable lawyer.
At the Abel Law Firm, we are prepared to provide you exceptional legal representation from the moment you step into our offices. This is why, for more than 46 years, our attorneys have worked non-stop to ensure our clients get what the results their case deserves. We practice injury law because we care about your future after an injury temporarily derails your life. A good legal outcome can give you the resources that you need to move on, and we are here to help make sure that you are supported.
If you have been the victim of a car accident, you should not have to bear the consequences alone. Contact the OKC car accident attorneys at the Abel Law Firm at (405) 239-7046. Make the first step toward justice today.