No one is ever prepared to deal with the aftermath of a car accident. Sadly, auto accidents are not rare in Oregon. Immediately after an accident, you are required to take necessary steps, provided you are in a physical condition to do so. If the other driver was at fault, you could potentially sue them for damages, as Oregon is an at-fault state. For that, you may want to consult a reliable local car accident lawyer who can explain your rights and legal options. Here are some things to know about auto accident laws in Oregon.
Reporting the crash
No matter the circumstances, never leave the accident scene. You must call the police, and if someone is injured, call 911 immediately. You must also complete an Oregon Traffic Accident and Insurance Report for a car accident that resulted in injury, death, or property damage worth $2,500 or more. Wait at the scene until a police officer arrives.
Other steps to take
If you are okay, consider exchanging information with drivers involved in the accident. Note down the vehicle details, insurance info, and license numbers. Check if there are witnesses to the accident and ask for their contact details. Gather as much evidence you can from the accident scene, including photos and videos.
Shared fault in Oregon
Oregon is a “modified comparative negligence” state. This means you can sue the other driver for their action even when you are at fault. However, your share of fault should not be more than theirs. Also, your fault percentage will be used for determining your share of the given settlement. For instance, if you are 30% at fault and get $10,000 in a settlement, you will get $7,000 as the final compensation.
The statute of limitations
Like most other states, Oregon also has its statute of limitations, which allows two years for victims to file a car accident lawsuit, counting from the accident date. If you lost a loved one in the crash, you could pursue a wrongful death lawsuit within three years from the date of death.
Call a lawyer
Most car accident cases are complex, and insurance companies rarely play a fair game with victims. If you believe that you have a lawsuit, talk to an attorney to know the worth of your claim. Usually, car accident lawyers work on a contingency fee, only payable when you win. You don’t have to bother about a hefty upfront fee.