In Legal Battles Against Distracted Driving, Our Attorney Stands As Your Strongest Ally
With smartphones and various other technological distractions at our fingertips, the roads have become increasingly hazardous due to a concerning phenomenon: distracted driving. Each year, thousands of lives are tragically lost, and countless others are injured due to drivers who prioritize their phones or other diversions over the safety of themselves and others. But in the face of this growing problem, hope and justice shine through with the help of our distracted driving attorney in Beachwood, Ohio.
Karp Steiger, is a personal injury law firm that has dedicated itself to serving the community with exceptional legal representation. For over 50 years, we have fought to protect the rights of individuals who have suffered the devastating consequences of distracted driving. With our extensive experience and in-depth understanding of the complexities of these cases, we have secured countless victories for our clients, ensuring that negligent drivers are held accountable for their actions.
In a world where distracted driving continues to threaten the safety of innocent lives, Karp Steiger, remains resolute in our mission to bring negligent drivers to justice. Discover how we can assist you. Contact us today and schedule a risk-free consultation.
What Constitutes Distracted Driving In Beachwood, Ohio?
Distracted driving refers to any activity that diverts a driver’s attention away from the primary task of operating a vehicle safely. These distractions can significantly impair a driver’s ability to react quickly and make sound decisions, increasing the risk of accidents, injuries and fatalities on the road.
Distracted driving can take various forms, and some of the most common activities that constitute distracted driving include:
- Texting and using a cellphone
- Talking on the phone
- Eating and drinking
- Adjusting the radio or music
- Using GPS or navigation systems
- Interacting with passengers
- Grooming, including activities like applying makeup, shaving or fixing hair
- Reading maps, books or other materials
- External distractions, such as focusing on events, looking at accidents or distractions on the roadside
Any activity that causes a driver to take their eyes off the road, hands off the wheel or mind off driving constitutes distracted driving. Even momentary distractions can have severe consequences, as accidents can happen in the blink of an eye.
Are you or someone you know struggling with the consequences of distracted driving? Our personal injury attorney in Beachwood, Ohio, possesses an in-depth understanding of the complexities surrounding distracted driving cases and can help you navigate the legal landscape with ease. Give us a call to know more.
What Injuries Result From Distracted Driving Accidents?
Distracted driving accidents can cause significant injuries, some more serious than others. Factors that can influence the resulting injuries include the speed of the vehicles, the types of vehicles involved and the nature of the collision.
Some common injuries seen in distracted driving accidents include:
- Soft tissue injuries
- Fractures and broken bones
- Head injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal injuries
- Cuts and lacerations
- Catastrophic injuries
- Psychological injuries
The severity of these injuries can range from minor to life-threatening, and some injuries may not become apparent until days or even weeks after the accident. It is essential to seek immediate medical attention after a distracted driving accident, even if you believe your injuries are minor, as some injuries may worsen over time if left untreated.
If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident, it’s also crucial to consult with our Ohio personal injury attorney to understand your rights and options for seeking compensation for your injuries and other damages. We can help ensure you receive fair and adequate compensation to support your recovery and future well-being.
What Are Ohio Distracted Driving Laws?
To combat the alarming issue of distracted driving accidents, the state of Ohio has implemented strict laws aimed at reducing distractions behind the wheel and protecting all road users. Understanding the legal framework surrounding distracted driving is essential, especially if you are considering pursuing legal action.
Texting While Driving
In Ohio, it is illegal for all drivers to use any electronic wireless communication device to write, send or read text messages while operating a vehicle. This includes texting on smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices. This offense is considered a primary offense, meaning law enforcement could pull over and ticket a driver solely for texting while driving.
Handheld Cellphone Use
Ohio law prohibits drivers under the age of 18 from using any electronic wireless communication device while driving, even if it is hands-free. For adult drivers aged 18 and above, there is no statewide ban on using handheld cell phones while driving, but it’s important to note that using a cell phone while driving can still be considered distracted driving and lead to traffic violations if it impairs the driver’s ability to operate the vehicle safely.
Distracted Driving As A Primary Offense
While there is no specific “distracted driving” statute in Ohio, law enforcement officers could cite drivers for distracted driving under the state’s broader reckless or careless driving laws if the driver’s distraction led to dangerous or negligent behavior behind the wheel.
Penalties for distracted driving in Ohio could include fines, points on the driver’s license and potential increases in insurance premiums. For repeat offenses or cases where distracted driving led to accidents resulting in injuries or fatalities, the penalties could be more severe.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a distracted driving accident in Ohio, don’t navigate the legal complexities alone. Seek the help of our distracted driving attorney in Beachwood, Ohio, to protect your rights and provide legal guidance tailored to your situation.
What Is Ohio’s Comparative Fault Law?
Ohio follows a comparative fault system for determining damages in personal injury cases, including those involving distracted driving accidents. The comparative fault rule in Ohio is known as “Comparative Negligence.”
Under Ohio’s comparative negligence rule:
- Pure comparative fault: If multiple parties are at fault for an accident, each party’s degree of fault is determined. Even if you were partially at fault for the accident, you can still recover damages from the other at-fault party. However, the amount of compensation you receive will be reduced in proportion to your percentage of fault.
- 51% bar rule: There is a limit to your ability to recover damages. You can only recover compensation if you are found to be 50% or less at fault for the accident. If you are found to be 51% or more at fault, you will not be able to recover any damages from the other parties involved.
Insurance companies may try to use comparative fault principles to minimize the amount they have to pay in claims. Having strong evidence and legal representation from our Ohio distracted driving lawyer can help protect your rights and ensure you receive maximum compensation.
What To Do After A Distracted Driving Accident?
While the aftermath of a collision can be disorienting, staying calm and following a systematic approach can make a significant difference in the outcome of the situation.
If you find yourself involved in a distracted driving accident, follow these steps to protect yourself and others:
- Check for injuries: First and foremost, check yourself and others involved in the accident for injuries. Call emergency services immediately if anyone is seriously injured or requires medical attention.
- Move to safety: If possible and without causing further harm, move your vehicle to a safe location, such as the shoulder of the road. Turn on hazard lights to alert other drivers.
- Call the police: Even for minor accidents, it’s essential to report the incident to the police. They will create an official accident report, which can be helpful for insurance claims and legal proceedings.
- Exchange information: Obtain the names, contact details, driver’s license numbers, license plate numbers, and insurance information of all parties involved in the accident. Also, gather contact information from any witnesses present.
- Collect documentation at the scene: If you’re able to do so, take photos of the vehicle damage, the positions of the vehicles, road conditions, speed limit signs, traffic signals and the scene as a whole. These details can make a big difference in your case.
- Avoid admitting fault: Refrain from discussing fault or responsibility with the other parties involved or witnesses. Anything you say could be used against you later, so it’s best to avoid making any admissions of guilt.
- Report the accident to your insurance company: Notify your insurance provider about the accident as soon as possible, providing them with accurate and honest information.
- Get medical help: It’s a good idea to have a medical professional examine you after an incident, even if you feel okay. Certain injuries might not be apparent right away due to the body’s adrenaline response. You might end up with symptoms down the line.
- Consult an attorney: If you believe the accident resulted from another driver’s distracted driving, consider contacting our personal injury attorney, who is experienced in handling such cases.
- Preserve evidence: Keep records of all medical treatments, expenses and any other costs related to the accident. Additionally, save all communication with insurance companies, the other driver, and any witnesses.
Taking these steps after a distracted driving accident can protect your interests, ensure you receive appropriate medical attention, and support your legal claim for compensation. Seek legal guidance from our attorneys at Karp Steiger, to navigate the complexities of the aftermath of your distracted driving accident.
Who Can Be Liable In Distracted Driving Accident Lawsuits In Ohio?
Multiple parties may be held liable for the injuries and damages caused by distracted driving accidents in Beachwood, Ohio. The primary liable party is typically the distracted driver themselves, as their negligent actions directly led to the accident. However, depending on the circumstances, other parties may also bear some responsibility. Here are some potentially liable parties in distracted driving accidents:
- Distracted driver: The driver who was engaged in distracting activities, such as texting, talking on the phone, or any other form of inattentiveness, is often the primary liable party in a distracted driving accident.
- Vehicle owner: If the distracted driver was operating a vehicle owned by someone else, the owner of the vehicle might also be held partially responsible under certain legal doctrines, such as negligent entrustment or vicarious liability.
- Employers: If the distracted driver was working for an employer and driving as part of their job at the time of the accident, the employer might be held liable under the legal principle of “vicarious liability” or “respondeat superior.”
- Manufacturers: In some cases, a defect in the vehicle’s design or manufacturing might have contributed to the accident or exacerbated the injuries. In such situations, the vehicle manufacturer or a part manufacturer might be held liable under product liability laws.
- Government entities: Poorly maintained roads, lack of proper signage, or other road-related hazards caused or contributed to the accident. In such cases, the government entity responsible for maintaining the roadways might be held partially liable.
- Employers of the distracted driver: If the driver was using a company-issued cellphone or other work-related devices at the time of the accident, the employer might face liability for failing to enforce policies against distracted driving.
- Property owners: In certain situations, property owners might be held responsible if an accident occurs on their property, and it can be proven that their negligence contributed to the incident.
If you’ve been injured in a distracted driving accident in Ohio, it’s essential to consult with our Beachwood personal injury attorney. We can help identify all potentially liable parties and build a strong case to seek the compensation you deserve.
How To Prove Negligence In A Distracted Driving Claim?
Accidents caused by distracted driving have become an all too common and concerning issue on today’s roads. If you or a loved one has been involved in such an accident, proving negligence on the part of the distracted driver is essential for seeking fair compensation for your injuries and damages. Understanding the elements involved in proving negligence will empower you to seek justice and hold distracted drivers accountable for their actions.
Duty Of Care
The plaintiff must establish that the distracted driver owed a duty of care to other road users, including pedestrians and other drivers. In most jurisdictions, drivers have a legal duty to operate their vehicles safely and attentively, obey traffic laws and avoid engaging in distracting activities while driving.
Breach Of Duty
The key element is showing that the distracted driver breached their duty of care by engaging in a distracting activity while driving. Common examples of distractions include texting, talking on the phone, using a GPS device, adjusting the radio or interacting with passengers.
The plaintiff needs to demonstrate that the distracted driver’s breach of duty was the direct cause of the accident and resulting injuries. It must be evident that the distraction impaired the driver’s ability to operate the vehicle safely and that the accident would not have occurred “but for” the distraction.
To pursue a personal injury claim, the plaintiff must have suffered actual damages as a result of the accident. These damages may include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, property damage and other related losses.
What Evidence Can Help Prove Driver Distraction?
Proving driver distraction in a personal injury case can be crucial for establishing liability and securing compensation for your injuries and damages. While it may be challenging, there are several methods and types of evidence that can help demonstrate driver distraction:
- Eyewitness testimony
- Police report
- Cellphone records (Text message or phone call timing)
- Photos and surveillance footage
- Vehicle data recorders (Black Box)
- Social media or online activity
- Medical records
- Admission of fault
To build a strong case for negligence in a distracted driving accident, it is essential to consult with our distracted driving attorney in Beachwood, Ohio. We can guide you through the process, collect relevant evidence, and advocate on your behalf to seek fair compensation for your injuries and damages.
What Damages Can I Recover From My Distracted Driving Lawsuit?
In a distracted driving lawsuit, you may be entitled to recover various types of damages, depending on the specific circumstances of the accident. Damages are the monetary compensation awarded to the injured party to cover losses and expenses resulting from the accident. Here are some common types of damages that you may be able to recover in a distracted driving lawsuit:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Wrongful death
- Punitive damages
The availability and calculation of damages can vary based on Ohio laws and the specific facts of the case. To ensure you pursue the maximum amount of compensation possible, it is highly recommended that you seek legal representation from our distracted driving attorney in Beachwood, Ohio.
Call Our Distracted Driving Attorney In Beachwood, Ohio, Now
In the pursuit of justice, your decision to seek the help of a distracted driving lawyer not only protects your rights but also sends a powerful message against negligent and irresponsible behavior on our roads. By holding distracted drivers accountable, we collectively contribute to making our communities safer for everyone.
As you embark on this battle, remember that you are not alone. Our distracted driving attorney in Beachwood, Ohio, will be there every step of the way, guiding you through the legal process with empathy and dedication.
Do not let the burden of a distracted driving accident weigh you down. Take action today and contact our attorneys at 216-696-3515.
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