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Dealing with Distracted Driving Car Accidents in the US: Getting Compensation



Dealing with Distracted Driving Car Accidents in the US: Getting Compensation

Distracted driving is a dangerous epidemic on American roads. A quick glance at your phone, a bite of your sandwich, or a moment adjusting the radio can lead to devastating consequences. Sadly, distracted driving accidents cause thousands of injuries and deaths each year. 

But if you have been the victim of such an accident, resources are available to be entitled to compensation. This compensation can help cover medical bills, lost wages, and the pain and suffering caused by the crash. 

So, let’s talk about how you can navigate this process and protect yourself.

First Off, The Dangers of Distracted Driving

When we think about dangerous driving, speeding or driving under the influence often come to mind. But there’s a silent killer on our roads — distracted driving. It might seem harmless to adjust the music or check a notification, but those split seconds of inattention can have life-altering consequences.

So, let’s get into some distractions. 

Types of Distractions

Distractions fall into three main categories.

  • Visual: Anything that takes your eyes off the road, even for a moment. This includes looking at your phone, reading maps, or searching for something in your bag.
  • Manual: Actions that take your hands off the wheel, like eating, drinking, changing the radio station, or applying makeup.
  • Cognitive: This is when your mind wanders away from driving. It could be daydreaming, having an in-depth conversation, or being consumed by strong emotions.

Consequences of Distracted Driving

The scary thing is, it doesn’t take a long distraction to cause lasting damage:.

  • Increased reaction time: The average text takes about 5 seconds to read. At 55 mph, that’s driving the length of a football field blindfolded!
  • Impaired judgment: Your mind’s not fully on the task of driving, so you might miss crucial cues or make impulsive decisions.
  • Decreased awareness: You may not notice a pedestrian crossing, a car changing lanes, or a sudden hazard.
  • Increase in serious injuries and fatalities: Distracted driving doesn’t just cause fender-benders – it leads to devastating injuries and heartbreaking loss of life.

Don’t think it can’t happen to you. Distracted driving puts everyone on the road at risk.  Taking those risks is simply not worth it.

Types of Compensation Available

A qualified car accident lawyer can help you navigate the complexities of filing a car accident claim and fight for the compensation you’re entitled to. A qualified car accident lawyer can help you navigate the complexities and fight for the compensation you’re entitled to.

Here are some types of compensation you might be entitled to.

Economic Damages

These cover the direct, out-of-pocket costs of the accident.

  • Medical Expenses: This includes everything from ambulance rides and hospital stays to ongoing doctor visits, medication, physical therapy, or even long-term care if needed.
  • Lost Wages: If your injuries prevent you from working, you can claim your lost income. It also includes compensation if you can’t return to the same job or earn the same salary due to the accident.
  • Property Damage: This covers the costs to repair or replace your vehicle, along with any other damaged personal belongings.

Non-Economic Damages

These are harder to quantify but are intended to compensate for the very real impact the accident has had on your life.

  • Pain and Suffering: The physical discomfort, both short and long-term, that you’ve experienced due to your injuries.
  • Emotional Distress: This includes anxiety, depression, sleep disturbances, or other mental health consequences caused by the trauma of the accident.
  • Loss of Consortium: If your injuries prevent you from enjoying the companionship and intimacy of your spouse or partner, this type of compensation may apply.
  • Disfigurement: If the accident has left you with permanent scarring or disfigurement, you may be compensated for the impact on your life.

The Process of Obtaining Compensation

The path towards securing compensation after a distracted driving accident can be long and complicated. Let’s break it down more thoroughly.

Immediately Following the Accident

Let’s discuss what to do after an accident. 

  • Seek Medical Attention: Prioritize your health, even with seemingly minor injuries. Keep all medical records for insurance claims and potential legal action.
  • Document the Scene: If safe to do so, extensive photographs and videos will capture vehicle positions, skid marks, property damage, and surrounding roadway characteristics. Even details like weather conditions can be important later.
  • Obtain Witness Information: Their neutral observations can be powerful evidence. Secure names, phone numbers, and their account of what they saw.
  • File a Police Report: This provides a formal record of the accident. Request a copy, as it will contain important details and potential clues about distracted behavior.

Insurance Claims

Now, talk about how you can get insurance claims. 

  • Notify Your Insurer: Prompt notification is necessary, but avoid any detailed discussions or accepting settlement offers without legal counsel.
  • Dealing with the Other Driver’s Insurance: Be prepared for pushback. The insurance adjuster’s goal is to minimize payout. They might try to blame you or offer low settlements. Your attorney will be your strongest negotiator here.
  • Understanding Policy Limits: Compensation might be restricted by the at-fault driver’s insurance limits. If damages exceed their coverage, an attorney can explore options to recover the difference.

Filing a Lawsuit

Here’s how you can sue. 

  • Statute of Limitations: Act decisively, as every state has a time limit for filing personal injury cases.
  • The Importance of a Personal Injury Attorney: A skilled lawyer can increase your chances of a fair outcome, particularly if navigating complex insurance clauses or severe injuries. They assess your case’s strength and advise on when a lawsuit might be the best option.


Distracted driving shatters lives. If it’s happened to you, know that you’re not alone.  The road to recovery — both physically and financially — can be long and difficult.  Don’t be afraid to seek help.  

An experienced attorney will fight for the compensation you deserve, allowing you to focus on healing. And remember, together, we can make our roads safer by refusing to drive distracted and holding those who do.