Auto Accidents in Washington

Updated: Sep 11

Understanding auto accident law in Vancouver, Washington

Car Crash Consequences

Car accidents can mean serious property damage, injuries, or even death to you or your loved ones. If you or someone you love has been involved in a car accident, you should contact a Vancouver, Washington car accident lawyer. A lawyer can help you navigate the legal process pertaining to car accidents, and help you understand your rights under Washington car accident law. Additionally, a lawyer can ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve, while removing the stress and aggravation of having to deal with the at-fault party’s insurance company all by yourself. A lawyer may be able to settle your case at the negotiation stage, or provide aggressive representation throughout all phases of potential litigation to maximize the compensation you receive.

"A lawyer may be able to settle your case at the negotiation stage..."

Common Causes of Vancouver, Washington Car Accidents

There are many factors that can contribute to a car accident. But the vast majority of Washington car accidents share something in common: they could have been avoided if the at-fault party had been more responsible. This could be due to simple negligence, or it could be reckless driving, which is a wanton or willful disregard for the safety of persons or property. In the case of negligence, it could be something as simple as speeding, running a stop sign, or tailgating. In the case of recklessness, it could be something more serious, such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or texting while driving.


Regardless of the cause, a car accident can result in severe injuries, such as:

  • spinal cord and brain damage;

  • broken ribs; concussions;

  • contusions; lacerations; and

  • internal bleeding.

Other At-fault Parties

In addition to the irresponsible driver, there may be other parties whose irresponsible behavior contributed to the car accident. For instance, there could be a defect in the at-fault driver’s car that contributed to the accident. Such a defect may originate with the manufacturer, or it may have happened at the car dealership or maintenance shop. Moreover, roadways left in a defective condition may have contributed to the car accident. In that case, a government entity may hold some responsibility. Regardless, if the defect contributed to the car crash, a dedicated Washington car crash attorney may be able to collect compensation from the other parties. A Washington lawyer specializing in auto accidents will work aggressively to identify every responsible party and hold them accountable.

"...there could be a defect in the at-fault driver’s car that contributed to the accident."

Washington Auto Accident Filing Deadline

According to Washington law, car accident cases involving injury to person or property must be filed no later than three years from the date of the crash. This is why it is important to consult with a Washington lawyer who handles auto-accident cases. If the case is not filed on behalf of the claimant within this time frame, they may be prevented from receiving compensation under Washington law.

Compensation in Auto Accident Cases

A Washington auto accident attorney may be able to increase the amount of money a claimant receives to compensate them for their injuries. An attorney will work hard to account for every type of compensatory damage a claimant has suffered, and thus may greatly increase the total amount of recovery. The various types of damages a claimant can suffer in a car crash include, but are not limited to:

  • Pain and suffering, both physical and emotional

  • Hospital bills from the day of the accident

  • Future hospital bills from ongoing treatment

  • The costs of medications

  • Rehabilitation bills

  • Loss of income during recovery

  • Loss of income after recovery from permanent damages

Punitive Damages in WA

Punitive damages are awarded not to compensate the victim of the auto-accident, but to punish the irresponsible party when their behavior is egregious enough. While most states permit punitive damages in personal injury cases, Washington generally does not. However, there are a few exceptions. For example, punitive damages may be awarded in malicious harassment lawsuits.

"Punitive damages are punish the irresponsible party when their behavior is egregious enough."

Contact In-house | On-site if you have more questions about auto accidents in Vancouver, Washington, and speak with a Vancouver WA attorney.

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