Washington, D.C. Car Accident Lawyers
We Can Help You Recover the Compensation You Deserve
When you get in your car to drive to work, to go to school, to run errands, or to go on a trip, you probably are not thinking about getting into an accident. Unfortunately, car accidents are a common occurrence, especially in Washington, D.C.
If someone else’s negligence led to an accident that left you injured or facing property damage, you have the right to pursue legal action and to hold them accountable for their negligence. You do not have to pay the price for someone else’s mistake. Ashcraft & Gerel can fight to ensure that you receive the full compensation you deserve.
Car Insurance Requirements in Washington, D.C.
The District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles maintains that all drivers must have auto insurance and must have the minimum coverage in a few different areas.
Minimum insurance coverage includes:
- At least $25,000 per person or $50,000 per accident to cover personal injury protection in the event that someone is hurt in an accident
- At least $10,000 per accident to cover all types of property damage, including vehicle damage
- At least $25,000 per person or $50,000 per accident to cover uninsured/underinsured individuals injured in an accident
- At least $5,000 per accident to cover property damage for uninsured/underinsured individuals involved in the accident
Anyone who drives without insurance in Washington, D.C. is personally responsible for all costs associated with a car accident.
Steps to Take after a Car Accident
After an accident, the first thing you should do is ensure that you and your passengers are not physically injured. Seek immediate medical attention for any severe injuries.
If you do not need immediate medical care, be sure to call the police. The police can make sure that you and the other driver exchange insurance and contact information. The officer can also write a police report detailing the incident. This can be a crucial piece of evidence when you file a claim.
After the accident, we recommend that you seek medical attention even if you do not think you sustained any serious or life-threatening injuries. Some injuries take several days or weeks to appear. Having a medical professional assess your health and physical condition can ensure there is documented proof of any injuries you sustained in the accident.
Once the accident scene has been cleared and both drivers have gone their separate ways, the insurance companies will get involved. This is perhaps the most complex and frustrating part of any car accident case. Many people attempt to deal with insurance companies on their own, but having our skilled Washington, D.C. car accident attorneys on your side can make a world of difference in your success.
There is a three-year statute of limitations for car accident claims in the District of Columbia. Since you may lose your right to compensation after this time limit is up, we encourage you to give notice to the other driver’s insurance company right away. Our attorneys can follow up with a written notice to the insurance company after you inform them you will be filing a claim.
A No-Fault District
Washington, D.C. is a no-fault district. Regardless of who caused the accident, you can use your personal injury protection (PIP) or “no-fault” insurance to obtain compensation for your medical expenses and lost wages. That said, it is usually better to bring a claim against the other driver if they were at fault, as your PIP insurance does not cover pain and suffering.
You have 60 days to decide whether you will bring a claim against the other driver. Should you choose to rely on your no-fault insurance, you will not be able to submit a claim – with very limited exceptions.
In Washington, D.C., you can only use your no-fault benefits and file a claim against the other driver under limited circumstances.
You may be able to do so if:
- Your medical expenses exceed your insurance policy’s PIP coverage
- Your injuries involve permanent impairment or disfigurement, or disability lasting at least 180 days
Insurance policies and coverage limits are extremely complicated. It can help to work with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney if you are facing this situation. Ashcraft & Gerel is here to walk you through the process.
Washington, D.C. still implements the contributory negligence policy, which means that anyone found even just 1% responsible cannot recover compensation – no matter how severe the damages were. Insurance companies often use this policy in their efforts to reduce the amount of money they have to pay out. Contributory negligence applies to civil lawsuits in addition to insurance claims.
Discuss Your Case with Ashcraft & Gerel
During a free initial consultation, our attorneys can discuss your rights and options and help you make informed decisions moving forward. Our goal is to ensure that you get the maximum compensation available under the law. We understand that there is a lot of red tape to cut through and that car accident claims can be overwhelming. Let us handle the legal legwork for you so that you can focus on recovering.
Call (202) 759-7648 now to get started.
Pharmaceutical Negligence $46 Million
Brain Injury Due to Defective Medical Device $16 Million
Injuries Caused by Mining Disaster $11 Million
Injuries to Foster Child From Abuse - Gov’t Agency $10 Million
Injuries Due to Negligent Operation of Train $6.1 Million
Child Injured at Birth - Umbilical Cord Compression $5.4 Million
Injured by Defective Helmet & Negligent Track Employees $3.5 Million
Child Injured at Birth – Deprived of Oxygen $2.9 Million
Injured Forklift Operator $2.5 Million
Burns from Flammable Bathrobe $2 Million
Our legal team understands what you are going through and is committed to defending your rights against powerful businesses and insurance carriers.
Committed to the Community
Our advocacy extends beyond the courtroom through our extensive involvement in the community and support for positive change within our industry.
Fearless Advocacy When You Need It
Our experienced legal team is not afraid to go to trial in order to maximize the recovery that our clients desperately need and rightfully deserve.
Respected within the Legal Field
Our esteemed attorneys are highly regarded within the legal community and even command respect from adjustors and defense counsel.
At the Forefront of Major Litigation
Our legal team has spearheaded litigation on behalf of injured clients in many high-profile cases, including major disasters, explosions and sexual abuse cases.
A Long Legacy of Successful Results
Since its founding in 1953, Ashcraft & Gerel has obtained more than a billion dollars in successful verdicts and settlements for injured clients.