An automobile accident can change your life forever. Car crashes can range from fender benders to high-speed collisions with drunk or distracted drivers. Serious crashes can result in debilitating, life-long injuries or even death.
Those who are seriously injured typically incur significant medical bills, missed work, and possibly even the inability to continue working. Extensive, and sometimes life-long, care may be required. The families also have lost a loved one will struggle not only with the emotional loss of their loved one, as well as possible the loss of income that would have otherwise been provided by their deceased loved one. Everyone who suffers deserves fair compensation. l
At the Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt, we understand the emotional, physical, and financial devastation that can follow a serious car or truck accident and the challenging legal battle that clients face when seeking full and fair compensation.
You do not have to face this alone.
Whether you have lost a loved one, suffered serious injuries, or both, experienced Marion, Virginia car accident attorney Mark Hurt offers dedicated, tenacious representation for clients in seeking full compensation from those responsible. Mark and our firm investigate crashes, interview witnesses, hold depositions, file lawsuits against defendants, negotiate settlements, and try cases when fair settlements cannot be obtained.
Mark has represented clients through Virginia state and federal courts, and is one of less than one-tenth of one percent of lawyers who have argued before the United States Supreme Court. With more than 30 years of legal practice and recovering millions of dollars, Mark has the trial and negotiation experience to get clients full compensation.
Call Our Office to Schedule a Free Consultation. You will Pay No Fee Unless Compensation is Recovered
Car Crashes in Marion, Virginia
As the county seat of Smyth County, Marion, Virginia has two large thoroughfares – Interstate 81, located on the south and southeast side of town, and Highway 11 (also known as Lee Highway and Main Street). These thoroughfares, as well as other streets in town, are often the site of numerous car accidents each year. While the majority of the accidents are relatively minor, there are accidents and crashes that involve serious injury or even death. When such accidents and crashes occur, our firm is available to help the victims.
Common Causes of Motor Vehicle Accidents
Determining the underlying cause of a car accident and all contributing factors is key to proving fault. As a Marion personal injury attorney with decades of experience, Mark Hurt can thoroughly investigate your collision so that all avenues of compensation can be aggressively pursued.
What are Common Factors in Virginia Car Accidents?
Common causes of car accidents in Virginia include:
- Distracted Drivers. While driving distractions have long existed, texting, mobile phone use, and other electronic devices have made travel significantly more dangerous.
- Driver Negligence. Drivers must drive safely, which includes paying attention to their surroundings and obeying traffic laws. When they fail to do so and cause a crash, they can be found negligent for failing to drive safely, and (therefore) will be responsible for all damages incurred.
- Excessive Speed and Reckless Driving. Speeding and driving too fast during bad weather are other forms of driver negligence. Additionally, reckless driving, such as weaving in and out of lanes, tailgating, or driving in the wrong lane, can also subject a driver to liability.
- Intoxication. Many car accidents are caused by drivers who get behind the wheel when they are impaired by drugs or alcohol. Tragically, in the US, one person dies every 50 minutes in a drunk driving accident. When a person is impaired by alcohol, illegal drugs, or prescription drugs, their reaction times decrease, making it more difficult to avoid road hazards. Further, intoxicants can also lower inhibitions, putting an individual in a mindset in which they engage in dangerous, reckless behavior.
- Defective and Malfunctioning Automobile Parts. Many car accidents are caused by defective or faulty vehicle parts, such as defective tires, faulty brakes, power steering failure, or malfunctioning computer systems. When vehicle parts malfunction, accidents can result. When this happens, the manufacturer, designer, supplier or distributor of the defective part may be liable for any injuries.
In addition to accidents being caused by defective parts, injuries can also be made more severe when parts fail to perform as intended. Air bags fail to deploy. Protective crash zones fail to provide safety. Injury victims and families can also initiate litigation when injuries are more severe, or if death occurs, as the result of these types of failures.
- Roadway Defects. Minimum roadway standards have been established to help ensure that drivers remain safe. If these standards are not upheld, those who design, build, and maintain roadways may be responsible. Typically, this is a government entity, which can make a case more challenging or complex, as certain laws afford additional liability protections for the government.
Common Car Accident Injuries.
When you are injured in an auto accident, it is important to work with an experienced personal injury lawyer who can help build a strong claim for full recovery. Motor vehicle accidents can result in severe and catastrophic injuries, and damages are usually needed to help compensate for injuries and restore life to normal. Here are some of the most common accident injuries in Virginia:
- Whiplash. Whiplash is the common name for muscle, tendon, and ligament injuries that happen in car and truck accidents. When a person is in an accident, their body is propelled in a faster manner than they otherwise are capable of moving on their own. The trauma can strain muscles and surrounding soft tissue, leading to extreme and intense pain.
- Contusions and Lacerations. Contusions and Lacerations often result in crashes, and may be compounded by loose projectiles such as phones, glass, and metal debris. Not only can cuts and lacerations be painful, but they also pose a risk of infections and other complications.
- Traumatic Brain Injuries. Head and traumatic brain injuries can be devastating. and can result in long-term, or even permanent, problems with brain function, such as headaches, insomnia, personality changes, loss of short and/or long-term memory, and the inability to work.
- Broken Bones and Fractures. Some bones, such as the ribs, are fragile. Even light or moderate impact can cause a break or fracture, necessitating lengthy periods of rest and decreased physical activity.
- Internal Bleeding. Internal bleeding can be dangerous or even fatal, especially if not treated expeditiously. In a crash, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately for anything but the most minor car accidents to determine whether internal damages occurred.
- Herniated Discs. A herniated disc occurs when vertebrae in the spine ruptures or shifts. Herniated discs can result in life-long pain, and potentially other complications.
- Post–Traumatic Stress Disorder. Not all accident injuries are physical; mental and emotional injuries may also result. If you experience post-traumatic stress disorder, things that used to be routine may become stressful or even impossible. Mental health treatment may help to ease some of these anxieties.
Damages for Motor Vehicle Accidents in Virginia and Proving Fault
If you are injured in a motor vehicle accident and another party was responsible, you may be entitled to compensation, known as “damages”. The damages you can recover for an injury differ from case-to-case, but often include:
- Medical care costs and related expenses
- Ongoing and future care costs
- Lost wages and benefits
- Pain, suffering, and inconvenience
- Diminished earning capacity
- Wrongful death (which may be recovered by family members who qualify under Virginia statutes)
- Miscellaneous other costs and out-of-pocket expenses
In Virginia, recovering damages for injuries sustained in a car accident is not as easy as in many other states. First, an injury victim or family must show that the other driver was at-fault or responsible for causing injuries or death. However, not only must fault be proven, an injury victim or family must prove that the other driver was 100% responsible for the accident.
Because of this “contributory negligence” rule, if you are injured in a crash, you cannot recover against another driver if you are in any way found to be at fault at trial. Thus even if you are only 1% at fault and the other driver is 99% at fault, you won’t be entitled to any recovery.
How Much Money Can I Recover in a Virginia Car Accident?
Virginia has instituted several damages caps that may limit the compensation recoverable in some car accident cases. If punitive damages are available (those designed to punish outrageous conduct), Virginia imposes a $350,000 limit. Lastly, if your accident involved a minor who willfully or maliciously damaged public or private property, you will only be able to recover up to $2,500 from the minor’s parents.
While many car accident victims may be adversely impacted by damage caps, Virginia law does afford some protections against insurance companies. In Virginia, insurance companies cannot deny claims in bad faith. For instance, if your insurance company denies a comparable rental car while your car is being repaired, your insurance company may be responsible for paying the greater of $500 or double the cost of a comparable rental car.
Learn More About Virginia Car Accident Damages from an Experienced Marion, Virginia Lawyer.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident in Marion, or anywhere in Virginia, please call the Law Offices of Mark T. Hurt at 278-623-0808. We understand that car accidents can happen at any time; our team is available 24 hours per day.
Our initial consultations are free of charge; and if you become a client, we will work on a contingency fee basis, which means we only get paid for our services if there is a monetary recovery. Please call right away to ensure that you do not lose your right to possible compensation!
 Drunk Driving, NHTSA, https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving.
 Va. Code §§8.01-195.1 et seq.
 Va. Code § 8.01-38.1.
 Va. Code §8.01-195.3.
 Va. Code § 8.01-43, et seq.
 Va. Code § 8.01-66.
 Va. Code § 8.01-66.1.
We hired Mr. Hurt to help settle a worker’s comp injury case for my husband. Mark, Bart, and Mary worked tirelessly to resolve his case and reach a settlement we were pleased with. They were always available to answer questions and returned calls in a timely manner.