Every year, multi-car accidents and pile-ups occur on Missouri roads and highways. While these accidents often take place amidst snowstorms and other inclement weather, they can happen for a wide variety of reasons, and even seemingly for no reason at all. Unfortunately, there is nothing ordinary about a multi-car accident. Victims may find themselves struggling to take down every participant’s insurance. They may not know where or with whom to file a claim. Oftentimes, it is difficult to prove that any one motorist was at fault.
Since multiple-car crashes can be so confusing, it is important to understand what to do when you need to escape the immediate financial and medical aftermath of a pile-up crash.
If you were hurt in a crash involving three or more cars, you might need to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover your medical expenses or the income you lost while taking time away from work to recover from your injuries.
But in order to file a successful personal injury lawsuit, you need to show that one or more motorists were at fault and directly responsible for your injuries. In a multi-car collision, this can be difficult. You will need to collect and analyze evidence, such as:
- Eyewitness accounts of the accident and its potential cause
- Police reports and other law enforcement analyses
- Physical evidence from the accident site, as well as any potential surveillance camera recordings or cell phone footage
- Actual damages sustained by persons and their respective vehicles
What to Do After a Multi-Car Accident
After any accident, you should always ensure your own safety and well-being. If you feel physically capable, you may wish to assist other motorists, too.
Once you have evacuated your vehicle, call law enforcement. A police officer will initiate an investigation and may be able to determine the cause of an accident. Police reports are key pieces of evidence in court.
Even if you do not believe you were injured, always seek medical attention in the immediate aftermath of an accident. A doctor can help identify injuries you did not know you had. Furthermore, visiting a physician shows insurance companies that you had valid health concerns and are not simply pursuing a settlement for its own sake.
A personal injury attorney will be able to help you investigate the accident, collect police reports, and analyze your medical records to begin forming a comprehensive argument that you can take to court. If you do not take these steps after a crash, you could jeopardize your recovery.
What You Can Recover From a Multi-Car Accident
Missouri has no set limit on the amount of money you can recover from a personal injury lawsuit. You may be able to claim damages for:
- Vehicular damages and repairs
- Money spent on rental cars while yours was in the shop
- Medical bills and expenses
- Lost income
- Pain and suffering
- Long-term or permanent injuries
Since Missouri is an at-fault insurance state, you may be able to settle with the negligent driver or drivers’ insurance company. If your attorney cannot negotiate a sufficient settlement, you may be able to file a lawsuit.
Have You Been Injured in a Car Accident in Missouri?
If you've been injured in a car accident, you need to speak with an experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cape Girardeau office directly at 573.335.3359 to schedule your free consultation.