Car Accident

Why Do You Need to Contact Your Own Insurance Company After a Crash?

by Staff Blogger | September 16th, 2019

After an auto accident, there are a few steps you should take to protect your health and your rights. First, you should call 911. Doing so sends police officers and emergency medical personnel to the scene. Second, you should call a lawyer. Doing so helps protect your rights to compensation.

An additional step that some victims forget is to contact their own insurance provider. This is a necessary step, even if you weren’t at fault for the crash. Virtually all auto insurance providers require notice of accidents shortly after they occur, often within a matter of a day or two. That’s because it’s not always clear who is at fault for crashes, and they want to begin preparing for the possibility of a compensation claim.

If you fail to meet that requirement, it can complicate the compensation process and may even jeopardize your claim. In addition, it may make you ineligible to pursue compensation from your own policy, especially if you purchased personal injury protection or uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

In addition, not all insurance claims are cut and dry. That’s because the fault may be split among multiple parties during crashes, and you could be ruled partially at fault for the accident. Protecting your rights means fulfilling all of your responsibilities, and that includes contacting your insurance provider.

However, it’s important to stick to the facts when talking to your insurance provider. Never admit fault, never exaggerate your injuries, and never stray from the topic at hand. Having an experienced Nashville auto accident lawyer on your side from day one can help you avoid common insurance pitfalls. Contact Ponce Law today for a free consultation.

What Happens If You Wait Too Long to File an Auto Accident Claim?

by Staff Blogger | September 9th, 2019

After a car crash, you have a lot on your mind and on your to-do list. Your biggest priority is making sure you and your loved ones recover from your injuries. That can involve weeks or even months of doctor visits and physical rehabilitation. You may even require surgery with a prolonged recovery period.

In addition, you need to get back to work as soon as possible, but you may be unable to work until you’re on the mend. In the meantime, you may need to use disability insurance to get compensated for some of your missing wages, or you may try to get your employer to agree to alternate work arrangements so that your family will still have income while you wait to fully recover.

While those are important aspects of your post-accident recovery, it’s important to remember that you should also file a personal injury claim as soon as possible after the crash. It’s important to do so for three reasons:

  • Evidence can disappear—It’s vital to prove you weren’t at fault for the crash early, because evidence from the accident scene can disappear within a matter of days or even hours. The sooner you call a Nashville auto accident lawyer, the sooner that evidence can be collected.
  • The statute of limitations may run out—Tennessee’s statute of limitations on personal injury claims is just one year. If you wait to file and miss the deadline, your claim will be dismissed.
  • The insurance company may be skeptical of your claim—The longer you wait to file, the more difficult it may be to convince the insurance company that your injuries were caused by the accident instead of by something else.

Don’t let the clock run out on your claim. Get the legal representation you deserve by contacting the Nashville auto accident lawyers at Ponce Law today.

What Should You Do If You Get Hurt in a Rideshare Vehicle?

by Staff Blogger | September 4th, 2019

Rideshare vehicles are extremely popular in many cities, including Nashville. And while using a rideshare app to get rides around town can be a safer alternative than driving yourself—especially if you plan on drinking—they aren’t free from all dangers.

Many people are hurt in rideshare accidents every day, and the injuries they suffer can be severe. That means expensive medical bills and lost paychecks. However, not all rideshare accident victims pursue compensation that they might be entitled to.

If you’re involved in a rideshare accident, take these steps to protect your health and your rights:

  • Call 911—Regardless of who caused the accident, whether it was your driver or another motorist, it’s important to stay at the scene and call 911. Doing so dispatches both police officers and emergency personnel who can file accident reports and administer aid to you and other victims.
  • Take pictures of the accident scene—Use your camera or phone to take pictures of the crash scene. Because multiple parties may attempt to defend themselves after the crash, it’s important to document what happened as closely as possible.
  • Call a Nashville auto accident lawyer—Rideshare accidents can be legally complex, and fault may be split among passengers’ drivers and other motorists. The sooner you call a lawyer, the better your chances of getting compensation for your injuries may be.

At Ponce Law, we know rideshare accidents, and we know how to help victims get the money they deserve. Call today for a free consultation.

Tips for Staying Safe on a Scooter

by Staff Blogger | August 26th, 2019

Scooters are everywhere in Nashville, especially in the city’s most walkable areas. And while they’re convenient and fun to ride, it can be extremely dangerous for riders when they’re ridden near traffic. In May 2019, a scooter rider was struck by a vehicle in Nashville and died from his injuries.

Many cities, including Nashville, have gone back and forth on the safety and legality of scooters, but at the moment, it appears they’re here to stay. If you choose to ride a scooter, keep these safety tips in mind to reduce your risks:

  • Wear a helmet—Anytime you travel on two wheels, wearing a helmet may be the one step you take that saves your life. That’s true for bicycles and motorcycles, and it’s also true for scooters.
  • Don’t double up—Scooters are meant to be ridden by one person at a time. Never double up on a scooter, even if you and another person don’t exceed the weight limit. Riding with another person makes it more difficult to control your scooter, even if the other passenger is a small child.
  • Follow traffic laws—Just because you’re on a scooter doesn’t mean you can ignore stop signs, traffic lights, and lanes. Ride like you’re in your vehicle, and follow all traffic laws as closely as possible—including speed limits signs.

While some scooter accidents are riders’ fault, others are caused by negligent drivers. If you or someone you love was hurt by a careless driver, the Nashville car accident lawyers at Ponce Law are here to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Auto Accident Injuries Aren’t Always Obvious

by Staff Blogger | August 19th, 2019

After an auto accident, dialing 911 is the most important step you can take. Not only does it dispatch police officers who will make an official accident report, but it also dispatches emergency medical technicians who can administer aid to victims and transport them to a local hospital.

Some victims go to the hospital right away after a crash, while others leave the accident scene on their own and seek medical attention later. While you don’t have to go to the hospital via ambulance, it’s important to get evaluated by a doctor as soon as possible after your crash. In addition to establishing a connection between the car accident and your injuries, a full evaluation can also rule out internal injuries.

Auto accidents are traumatic for victims, both physically and mentally, and the outcomes of crashes may not be fully visible or felt for hours, days, or even weeks. The pain and inflammation of torn or stressed muscles and tendons may be masked by adrenaline or other injuries. In addition, some victims may even suffer broken or cracked bones without being aware of them until long after the adrenaline has worn off.

Internal injuries can be even more dangerous after auto accidents. The forces involved in auto accidents can cause victims’ organs to move inside their bodies, creating the risk for damage and bleeding. Victims also may suffer head injuries that can result in brain bleeds, which can be fatal if they aren’t treated promptly. Unfortunately, internal injuries may be asymptomatic after crashes, with symptoms not becoming obvious until victims are at home recuperating.

Don’t risk your health or your rights to compensation. See a doctor right away, and then contact the Nashville car accident lawyers at Ponce Law.

How Much Money Can You Get for Your Car Accident Claim?

by Staff Blogger | August 12th, 2019

If you were recently hurt in an auto accident, your first question afterward was likely whether you and your loved ones would recover from your injuries. Your second question is likely whether you’ll be able to get compensation for the other driver’s negligence to cover your expenses, and if so, how much.

At Ponce Law, our Nashville auto accident attorneys work to help victims like you get maximum compensation for their car accidents every day. However, even with the help of a law firm, no two auto accident claims are alike when it comes to the total compensation that victims can receive.

Factors that can influence how much money you’ll get include:

  • Whether you were partially at fault—If the other driver is ruled to be fully at fault for the crash, you may be eligible to get more money than if you were partially responsible.
  • The severity of your injuries—Victims who suffer serious and long-term injuries are often eligible to receive more money than victims who suffer short-term mild or moderate injuries.
  • How long you’ll be out of work—Many auto accident claims pay victims for their lost wages. However, the amount you receive may be dependent on how long your injuries will keep you out of work.

Those are just a few of the factors that we’ll review when we build your claim. Regardless of the circumstances, you can count on us to do everything in our power to get you the money you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Hot Car Deaths Aren’t Always Caused by Leaving Kids Behind

by Staff Blogger | August 7th, 2019

Every summer, safety organizations and the media remind parents of the dangers of leaving children and pets inside their cars while they run errands. The temperatures inside cars can quickly soar to dangerous and even fatal levels in a matter of minutes, even on relatively cool days. And while having a system for making sure your children are never left behind in your vehicle is extremely important, it’s not the only hot car danger you might face as a parent.

Another danger children face is being locked inside your vehicle when it’s parked at your home. Even young children are often familiar with how to get inside vehicles, including trunks or cargo areas. But when they’re inside, they may be unable to exit or call for help. Despite the fact that your vehicle may be parked in your own driveway or inside your garage, it can still be dangerous and even fatal for your children, especially on hot summer days.

You can prevent such a tragedy by always locking your vehicle when it’s not in use and by keeping your keys locked up or otherwise out of reach of your children. Never allow your children to play in your vehicle at home, and make sure your child exit your vehicle when you arrive home, even if they’ve fallen asleep during the drive.

At Ponce Law, our Nashville auto accident attorneys know that hot car deaths are just another risk factor that vehicles pose to innocent people like you and their loved ones. If you or someone you love was hurt in a car accident caused by someone else, we want to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Back-to-School Driving Safety Tips

by Staff Blogger | August 5th, 2019

Although summer doesn’t officially end for several weeks, summer vacation ends soon for thousands of children throughout Middle Tennessee. That means the return of reduced speed limits in school zones, crossing guards, and school buses throughout the city and your neighborhood. Whether you have children in school or pass through school zones on your commute to get to work, it’s important to be aware of back-to-school traffic and the dangers that it can pose to you, other drivers, and children.

To do your part in making Middle Tennessee’s roads safer during the 2019-2020 school year, follow these tips:

  • Don’t pass school buses that are picking up or dropping off—It’s illegal to pass stopped school buses in Tennessee when students are boarding or exiting. If you see an extended stop sign or flashing lights on the bus, come to a complete stop and wait for the bus to begin moving again.
  • Obey crossing guards in school zones—Crossing guards control the flow of traffic in school zones. If you see one at an intersection, remember that they dictate the right of way—not traffic lights or the order that you and other drivers arrived at the stop signs.
  • Be careful in residential areas—If you live near a school, there’s a good chance that students in your neighborhood walk to class. Be on the lookout for children during your commutes to and from work, and give them plenty of room, especially if there are no sidewalks.

Ponce Law stands up for the rights of people injured in car accidents, including back-to-school crashes. If you were hurt in a crash, contact our Nashville auto accident lawyers for a free consultation.

3 Modern Vehicle Safety Features That Can Save Lives

by Staff Blogger | July 29th, 2019

It’s been decades since vehicle manufacturers were first required to equip all of their cars, trucks, SUVs, and other models with standard safety features like airbags and seat belts. Those two safety innovations alone have saved countless lives during road accidents. However, the advancement of technology means that newer vehicles are equipped with even more safety features that can reduce the risk of accidents.

Three new safety features that are already changing the way drivers interact with their vehicles and the road include:

  1. Automatic emergency braking—Many modern vehicles are now equipped with sensors that detect when they are approaching other vehicles or objects at fast speeds and responding by automatically applying the brakes. This safety feature has reduced the number of rear-end collisions on equipped vehicles by up to 50 percent.
  2. Blind-spot detection systems—Mirrors can only show drivers so much of what’s going on outside of their vehicles. Checking blind spots requires physically turning and looking to the left or right, and doing so means taking your eyes off the road—and that can result in a crash. Blind spot detection systems make it easy for drivers to know when it’s unsafe to turn or change lanes with lights and audible tones that don’t require taking your eyes off the road.
  3. Back-up cameras—Back-up cameras can be invaluable when navigating a tight parking garage or when parallel parking, and they became mandatory in all vehicles manufactured in and after May 2018. Although they provide convenience for drivers, their true value is helping avoid collisions with pedestrians or people standing behind backing vehicles, including small children.

Unfortunately, even the safest vehicles aren’t always operated by the safest drivers. If you or someone you love was hurt in a crash caused by a negligent driver, our Nashville car accident lawyers want to help. Contact Ponce Law today for a free consultation.

Were Your Vehicle’s Airbags Recalled?

by Staff Blogger | July 22nd, 2019

In 2013, several automakers began recalling vehicles that were equipped with airbags manufactured by Takata Corporation. The recall has continued to expand since then, and new vehicles are added to the recall every year as the investigation into the defective airbags continues. Virtually all major auto manufacturers have vehicles that are affected by the recall, causing Takata Corporation to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. in mid-2017.

Consumer Reports states that the recall is the largest and most complex safety recall in U.S. history, and that more than 41.6 million vehicles may ultimately be involved by the time it’s complete. More vehicles are still being added to the recall even now. That means that even if you haven’t received a notice from your vehicle’s manufacturer, it may still be equipped with potentially defective airbags.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website has a search function where you can enter your vehicle identification number (VIN) to find out if it has been affected by the Takata airbag recall or any other potentially dangerous or damaging recall. Due to their potential for causing serious injuries and even death, auto manufacturers are required to fix these defective airbags for free.

At Ponce Law, it’s our goal to help people who were injured through no fault of their own. Whether you were hurt by a defective airbag or by a negligent driver, our Nashville car accident attorneys want to speak with you. Contact us today for a free consultation to get in touch with our legal team.