If you were involved in a motor vehicle collision but did not sustain any physical injuries, you might be wondering if it’s possible to sue for a car accident if you are not hurt. The short answer is, “yes.” You can certainly take legal action for other damages caused by a collision.
At Miller, Dawson, Sigal & Ward Injury Attorneys, we can help you identify all of the losses, hardships, and setbacks you can receive compensation for. Schedule a free consultation with a car accident lawyer from our firm today to find out if you’re entitled to damages.
Filing a Car Accident Lawsuit for Damaged Property
Even if you weren’t hurt in the accident, your car has likely sustained some damage. In that case, you can sue for property damage. If your suit is successful, you could receive compensation to cover the cost of vehicle repair or to put towards a replacement car.
It’s common for collisions to cause damage to items and valuables stored in the vehicle when the crash occurred. If your cell phone, tablet, or another item was damaged during the car accident, you can sue the at-fault party and demand payment for your damaged belongings.
You Can Sue for Emotional Distress After a Car Accident
If you’re not physically hurt after a car accident, it doesn’t mean you can’t sue for emotional distress. Even when collisions don’t cause injuries, they can still lead to mental health issues like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression.
If the accident has impacted your emotional well-being, you can pursue compensation to help you cope with the psychological issues you’re experiencing. If your lawsuit is successful, you could receive one or more of the following damages:
- Emotional distress
- Cost of psychological counseling
- Cost of prescription medication to manage your mental health condition
How to Identify Signs of Emotional Distress After a Collision
Some car crash victims might not notice their mental health has been affected until it’s too late to take legal action. Look out for the following signs of emotional distress or deeper psychological issues if you’ve been in a car wreck:
- Flashbacks of the crash
- Anxiety about driving or riding as a passenger in a car
- Panic attacks
- Unprovoked anger
- Mood swings
If you notice any of the symptoms listed above, talk to a therapist or mental health counselor to find out if you’re suffering from emotional distress. An attorney can use your counseling records and testimony from your therapist to secure compensation for the psychological issues caused by the collision.
How an Attorney Can Help You File a Car Accident Lawsuit
As you now know, it’s entirely possible to file a lawsuit for a car accident you weren’t hurt in. That said, it’s extremely hard to get the damages you’re owed without the help of an experienced attorney. To make the most of your lawsuit, you’ll want to work with a lawyer who has handled cases like yours in the past.
Here’s how a seasoned car accident attorney can help you get the compensation you’re owed:
Calculate Your Losses
Before your attorney gets started on your case, they’ll meet with you for a free consultation to discuss how the accident has impacted your life. They’ll ask questions about the property damage caused by the crash and the mental health issues you’ve experienced due to the collision.
The answers you provide will help your lawyer determine which losses you’re eligible to receive. If you were able to save copies of your vehicle repair bills and therapy invoices, your attorney can use them to calculate the amount of compensation you need to cover your expenses.
To make your case successful, your attorney must collect evidence to support it. They’ll source testimony and important records from different sources to get the proof they need to recover compensation. Your lawyer will work hard to gather the following pieces of evidence:
- The police report
- Traffic camera footage of the collision
- Eye-witness testimony
- Photos of the crash scene
- Your vehicle repair bills
- Testimony from your mental health counselor
If your attorney is able to collect several or more of the pieces of evidence listed above, they’ll be able to construct a strong suit on your behalf. The more proof they have, the easier it will be to obtain a fair jury verdict.
Represent You in Court
The court may have trouble understanding why you’re suing for a car accident that you weren’t hurt in. Fortunately, an attorney can provide relevant evidence and explain how the crash has caused emotional suffering and damage to your property.
Your attorney may also call witnesses to the stand to provide further insight into how the crash occurred. Lastly, your lawyer will call on the jury to award compensation sufficient to cover all of the losses you’ve incurred due to the incident.
How Long Do I Have After a Car Accident to Sue?
If you’re suing for property damage or emotional distress caused by a car accident, you’ll have to do so within the time frame imposed by South Carolina’s statute of limitations. S.C. Code § 15-51-10 states that you have three years from the day of the crash to submit a suit.
Disregarding the filing deadline and submitting a suit after the three-year mark could stop you from getting the damages you need to fix your car and pay for mental health care. That said, there may be an exception to the statute, depending on your circumstances. So contact an attorney ASAP, even if you think your filing deadline has passed.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney Even if You Weren’t Hurt
Now that you know you can sue for a car accident that you weren’t hurt in, it’s time to reach out to a skilled lawyer and get started on your case. At Miller, Dawson, Sigal & Ward Injury Attorneys, we have the legal knowledge, experience, and resources to bring your case to a favorable conclusion.
Our team can investigate your accident, evaluate your losses, and pursue maximum compensation for the challenges you’ve faced. Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation at a time that works for you.