Anchorage Car Accident Lawyer
Put Years of Experience in Your Corner
Alaskans are injured in car accidents every day. A 2015 report from the Alaska Department of Transportation stated that over 4,700 car crashes occur each year in the state, and one person died on an Alaska road about every five days. What are these accident victims to do? While many may suffer in silence, they don’t have to.
The law allows traffic accident victims to pursue legal action against those who have caused their injuries, and for many, it can make all the difference. Car accident attorney Ben Crittenden at the Law Office of Ben Crittenden understands just how important these cases can be for victims and their families. He is here to help the injured find their voice and tell their story.
If you or someone you love has suffered injuries in a car crash or other accident, call Ben’s office today at (907) 312-5381 or take a moment to fill out the online contact form. You’ll hear directly from Ben and learn more about how he may be able to help you secure the justice and compensation you both need and deserve. Consultations are FREE!
Is Alaska A No Fault State?
Alaska is an at-fault state when it comes to car accident liability. This means that the party responsible for causing an accident is the one responsible for paying any required damages, typically through an insurance carrier. This system is directly opposed to a no-fault system which some states follow, in which drivers are required to carry a special kind of insurance called personal injury protection insurance (PIP).
If an accident occurs in these no-fault states, all parties file a claim with their own PIP insurance regardless of who caused an accident. It is usually difficult to file a personal injury claim in a no-fault state as many strict requirements must be met before filing a claim. Since Alaska is an at-fault state, injury victims have more opportunity to file a personal injury claim.
Types of Compensation
When you’ve been injured in a vehicle accident, you may be entitled to recover both compensatory and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are intended to replace the money you’ve lost due to the accident, while punitive damages are awarded to punish those responsible for your injuries.
You may recover damages for:
- Medical bills: You can be compensated for the treatment you’ve already received, and for anticipated future medical expenses. This may include hospitalization, diagnostic tests, surgery, medications, and physical therapy.
- Property damage: The negligent driver is responsible for your vehicle repair or replacement costs, replacement costs for any other property that is damaged, towing expenses, and car rental fees.
- Income loss: If you’ve missed work due to injuries sustained during your vehicle accident, or if you anticipate a loss of income in the future, you can recover compensation for your lost wages. You’re also entitled to reimbursement for any vacation and sick time you used while recovering from your injuries.
- Pain and suffering: The injuries you’ve suffered in a vehicle accident may interfere with your ability to maintain a normal daily routine and engage in the activities you most enjoy. You may receive compensation for the physical and emotional pain you’ve already experienced and might experience in the future.
The Importance of Evidence
After your vehicle accident, you’ll need to gather as much evidence as possible. The more documentation you have of your injuries, the more likely you are to receive the compensation you deserve.
Some of the evidence you may need to prove your case includes:
- Police reports
- Vehicle repair records
- Medical bills and records
- Proof of lost wages
- Witness statements
- Photographs of damage to your person and property
Cars Have Black Boxes Similar to Airplanes
When there’s a plane crash, you often hear about the black box—the flight-event recorder that documents key information, enabling crash investigators to piece together what happened. Most cars on the roadways have the same thing—without the video and audio—which are called event data recorders (EDR). Congress required, in 2014, that all new vehicles have EDRs. It is good to know that most manufacturers had already been installing them before that.
EDRs were first used in the 1990s to follow the actions of airbags during accidents. They have advanced in technology since then. They now record over 30 different types of data, such as seatbelt usage, speed, changes in velocity, brake status, seat position, and roll angles, among others. Some EDRs even have sensors under the seats to gauge the weight of the occupants, which may come in handy when there’s a dispute over who was driving the vehicle.
There are two types of data recordings: deployment events and non-deployment events. If the airbags deploy, data is permanently saved just prior to, during, and following the accident (about 20 seconds’ worth). If the airbags do not deploy, the information is stored for only a limited amount of time before being “overwritten.”
EDRs have become extremely valuable in reconstructing auto collisions. Crash reconstruction experts no longer need to work around the recollections of a driver or passengers. Black-box information can serve as evidence in refuting or supporting expert witnesses’ re-creation of a collision. When you’ve been injured in a vehicle accident, an experienced attorney can determine how much your car or motorcycle claim is worth.
Our Free Car Accident Guide Gives You the Information You MUST Know After a Crash
Shock isn’t just a medical term. It also applies to how confused and overwhelmed you will feel after a car crash. You’re supposed to be focused on healing. Instead, you keep turning over questions in your mind: How will I pay for my medical care? If I do pay my doctor bills, can I still buy groceries and pay the rent? What will my family do for income while I can’t work?
The people you expected to help you are only making things worse. The insurance company keeps calling, dunning you with questions. The police were polite and efficient at the scene of the collision, but they say they’ve done all they can for you. You wonder where you can get help and how to get the answers you need now.
The last thing on your mind might be finding an attorney and pursuing a legal case, taking a step in that direction may help relieve your stress and ensure that your rights and interests are protected. To help you get started, attorney Ben Crittenden wrote an e-book, A Guide to Car Accident Claims in Alaska. This free e-book offers readers both an overview of car accidents and accident law in Alaska, as well as practical tips that can help you today.
Our book offers information on:
- Common types of accidents
- Alaska vehicle laws
- Liability and negligence in Alaska
- Auto insurance
- What to do after an accident
- Common insurance company tactics
- Types of compensation available
- The role of an accident attorney
Ben has been helping to protect Alaska car accident victims by making sure their stories are told. He works hard to give injury victims a voice so they can obtain the justice and compensation they deserve when another person’s negligence causes serious harm. After reading his book, you and your family will have a better understanding of your rights and legal options, and you will feel confident moving forward if you decide to pursue a legal claim.
You Need an Attorney
If you’ve been involved in an auto accident, consult with an experienced auto accident attorney to help you obtain and preserve black-box evidence, prove liability, and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.