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Portsmouth, VA Personal Injury Attorney

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On This Page
  1. ​Why work with Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers after your accident in Portsmouth, VA?
  2. Types of Cases We Handle in our Portsmouth Office
  3. How Can a Portsmouth, VA, Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?
  4. What Is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Cases in Portsmouth, Virginia?
  5. Personal Injury Law Is All We Do

Portsmouth, VA, residents can experience life-altering injuries in an instant due to other people’s carelessness during everyday activities, whether grocery shopping at Food Lion, browsing at Lowes Home Improvement, attending classes at Tidewater Community College, or driving on the busy streets of Portsmouth.  

Portsmouth Boulevard, Interstate 264, Victory Boulevard, and numerous other streets in Portsmouth are rife with heavy congestion and truck traffic, which increases the risk of an accident. Motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of injuries and fatalities in Portsmouth.  

Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers can help you pick up the pieces when the unthinkable happens by ensuring you recover financial compensation for your pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical costs. We handle all the details for you, such as gathering evidence, filing your insurance claim, negotiating a settlement, and, when necessary, taking the liable parties to court. 

You should not have to pay for the negligence of others. If you have been injured in Portsmouth, VA, our skilled personal injury lawyers at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers will be there for you.

Why work with Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers after your accident in Portsmouth, VA?

Research by the Insurance Research Council has revealed that injured people represented by an attorney recovered three-and-a-half times the compensation as those without an attorney. However, you need a skilled lawyer with proven experience to get the best results. 

Our Record of Outstanding Results 

Our talented personal injury lawyers consistently win notable verdicts and settlements for our clients. In 2022, we were awarded the second-highest car crash verdict in Virginia—$2.46 million for a passenger who suffered permanent leg and ankle injuries after an accident with a drunk driver. 

In 2020, we negotiated the highest single-car accident recovery in the state—a $6.5 million settlement for a man rendered a quadriplegic by the wreck. In that hotly contested case, we fended off the defendants’ claim that our client contributed to the accident by improperly stopping in the roadway.  

Under Virginia’s contributory negligence laws, we had to prove the plaintiff had zero percent fault in the accident to recover any compensation. Our skilled attorneys persuaded the opposition that we could prove this in court. As a result, the case was settled in mediation. 

These results are not isolated incidents. We consistently get results like these through the personalized attention we give every case. Our successful verdicts and settlements include the following: 

  • $5.8 million for a client who suffered a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder from an accident 
  • $5 million settlement for a woman who suffered serious physical and psychological injuries in a truck accident 
  • $4.725 million settlement for an adolescent passenger who suffered vision impairment and multiple fractures in a car accident  
  • $2.86 million for a highway worker hit by a drunk driver 
  • $1.15 million for a mechanic suffering from hearing loss and tinnitus 
  • $400,000 for an injured hotel guest 
  • $177,000 for a navy man injured while riding a motorcycle 

A Reputation that Precedes Us 

Our outstanding customer service and consistent results for our clients have garnered the attention of the public and the legal community. This gives us leverage in settlement negotiations because insurance companies do not want to face us in court. We have also received the following community and legal recognition: 

  • 2023 Best Overall Law Firm by CoVABIZ 
  • 2023 Top Lawyers of Coastal Virginia 
  • 2022 Virginia Media Best Law Firm 
  • Virginia Super Lawyers 
  • Super Lawyers Rising Stars 
  • Lawyers of Distinction in Personal Injury Law 
  • Top 50 settlements in the United States in 2021 
  • 2022 Virginia Business Legal Elite 
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Ratings for the highest level of skill and ethics 
  • Top 100 National Trial Lawyers 
  • Patron of the American Association for Justice 
  • Top one percent in the Nation by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel 

Client Testimonials 

Our most important accomplishments are the differences we make in the lives of our clients, who entrust their future to us while facing some of the most difficult challenges of their lives. We get the most satisfaction from our work when we receive feedback like the following:

A Law Firm that Cares 

At Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers, we care about the people in the communities where we live and work. That is why, in addition to providing skillful representation to Portsmouth residents, we also support worthy causes, including the following: 

  • Portsmouth Volunteers for the Homeless 
  • Stop the Violence 757 
  • Various schools throughout the region 
  • The American Heart Association 
  • Read Across America 

Every year, we donate $15,000 to three worthy Hampton Roads area organizations selected through our Vote for a Cause program. We also provide college scholarships to area seniors. Making a difference in our communities is at the heart of our mission. 

No Upfront Fees 

We firmly believe that finances should never stand in the way of justice. When the negligent acts of others injure you, you may face mounting medical bills while you cannot work. This is why our law firm works on a contingency fee arrangement. 

When you hire our Portsmouth, VA, personal injury attorneys, you pay nothing upfront. We cover the cost of your case for you, such as filing fees and the cost of expert witnesses and other consultants, with no obligation to you unless we win your case.  

After we successfully recover your compensation, we charge a percentage of your recovery and collect our fees. If we fail to win you compensation, we absorb these costs, and you owe us nothing.

Jim Hurley headshot

Ask The Car Crash Experts - Why is it important to hire a personal injury lawyer after an accident?

Jim Hurley, Personal Injury Attorney

“Oftentimes, insurance companies will take advantage of people who have been injured in car wrecks. Because at the end of the day, the insurance companies, they really don’t care about you as they care about trying to save a dollar. At Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers, we firmly believe that if you’re injured in a car wreck, you need to contact and call and talk to a personal injury lawyer so you know what you need to do, you know what to expect, and oftentimes a personal injury lawyer can help you get a great recovery.”.”

Types of Cases We Handle in our Portsmouth Office

Our personal injury lawyers have helped clients injured by nearly any type of accident caused by the carelessness of others.

The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles reports that 1,554 car crashes occurred in Portsmouth in 2021, resulting in 12 fatalities and 1,104 injuries. These statistics are not surprising considering the multiple hazardous highways in Portsmouth, including the following, among others: 

  • Portsmouth Boulevard/State Road 334 
  • Airline Boulevard 
  • Interstate 264 approaching the Downtown Tunnel 
  • U.S. Highway 58 approaching the Midtown Tunnel 
  • State Route 164 
  • U.S. Highway 17/Frederick Boulevard 
  • High Street 

Portsmouth also experiences high volumes of commuter traffic and large trucks, contributing to the risk of car accidents.  The most common causes of car accidents in Portsmouth include the following: 

  • Speeding – responsible for 344 crashes in Portsmouth, resulting in 270 injuries and seven deaths in 2021 
  • Cell phone use while driving – responsible for 1,497 crashes in Virginia, resulting in 483 injuries, 111 serious injuries, and seven deaths 
  • Texting while driving – responsible for 129 crashes in Virginia in 2021, resulting in three fatalities and 39 injuries, including 10 serious injuries 
  • Drunk driving – responsible for 97 crashes in Portsmouth in 2021, resulting in 92 injuries and one death 

Texting and driving is just one form of distracted driving and is not the leading cause of distracted driving accidents. The leading causes are drivers’ failing to keep their eyes on the road and looking at roadside incidents. The combination of cell phone use and texting is third.  

Overall, 20,918 distracted driving crashes occurred in Virginia in 2021, killing 117 people and seriously injuring 1,446, including 43 pedestrians. Pedestrian deaths totaled 19. 

Other common causes of accidents include the following: 

  • Aggressive driving 
  • Driving while drowsy 
  • Improper lane changes 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Failure to obey traffic controls

Truck accidents are rising in the Portsmouth region, and the Virginia DMV has characterized the increase as “startling,” according to the Williamsburg Yorktown Daily. Preliminary data shows a 75 percent increase in truck accident deaths in 2022 compared to 2021, with 28 fatalities in 2022 and 16 in 2021. In 2022, 996 people across the commonwealth were killed in truck accidents. 

The Virginia DMV cited the following as the most common truck driver errors  leading to accidents:  

  • Improper lane change 
  • Following too closely 
  • Improper turn 
  • Speeding 
  • Avoiding another vehicle 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Improper passing 

Truck accidents are more likely to result in catastrophic injuries than accidents involving passenger vehicles alone because trucks are bigger and 20 to 30 times heavier, according to the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Association. 

Trucking companies often face driver shortages, causing truckers to work excessively long hours. The law allows truck drivers to drive as long as 11 hours in one day and work shifts as long as 14 hours per day with only a 30-minute break. Companies are only required to allow 10 hours between shifts. As a result, truck drivers may drive while drowsy, increasing the risk of an accident. 

In some cases, workers are pressured to violate the legal time limits to meet schedule demands. Worker shortages have also prompted some companies to hire inexperienced workers while failing to provide appropriate training.  

The most common types of truck accidents include the following: 

  • Rear endings 
  • Rollovers 
  • Wide right turn accidents 
  • Tire blowouts 
  • Sideswipes 
  • Underrides 
  • T-bones 
  • Jackknives

Like trucks, buses are considerably larger and heavier than most passenger vehicles, which can potentially cause catastrophic injuries in a motor vehicle accident. In addition to injuring the occupants of another vehicle, bus accidents can also seriously injure the bus passenger. 

According to the Virginia DMV, of the 57,399 bus crashes in Virginia in 2021, 8 were fatal, and 170 led to injuries. According to the data, 382 bus crashes involved school buses. School bus accidents resulted in one death and 130 injuries. The most common errors by bus drivers leading to accidents include the following: 

  • Improper turn 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Following too closely 
  • Improper lane change 
  • Avoiding another vehicle 
  • Improper passing 
  • Running red lights or stop signs 

Like truck drivers, bus drivers can be required to work long hours, which could increase the risk of fatigued driving. Bus drivers are allowed to work for shifts as long as 15 hours with up to 10 hours of driving time, with only eight hours between shifts. 

Motorcycle accidents can be especially devastating because motorcycles lack the crash protection that is inherent in motor vehicles. As a result, riders are highly likely to make contact with the road. Additionally, motorcycles are significantly smaller than cars, resulting in a stronger impact.  

One of the most common causes of motorcycle accidents is the failure of drivers to watch for motorcycles. This most commonly occurs when a driver turns left and a motorcycle rider goes straight. Our motorcycle accident lawyers in Portsmouth, VA, have also helped injured riders whose accidents were caused by the following: 

  • Distracted driving 
  • Drunk driving 
  • Following too closely 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Rear-ending at a traffic control

Virginia is home to 3,141 miles of freight railroad, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. The Federal Railroad Administration has reported that 119 train accidents occurred in Virginia from 2018 to 2021, resulting in $31,653,141 in damage. Approximately 31 railroad accidents occurred in 2022 as a result of the following: 

  • Equipment failure 
  • Human error 
  • Signal malfunctions 
  • Track defects 

Railroad Accidents are likely to result in catastrophic injuries and fatalities due to their long stopping distances, extreme weight, and significant mass, especially on long trains.

Walk Score has given Portsmouth a low score of 41 for bicycling due to its minimal infrastructure for bicycles. This means bicyclists often must ride side-by-side with motor vehicles with limited or no protection. Inattentive drivers may not see bicyclists, and some intersections can be confusing. 

Bicyclists are highly vulnerable in accidents because they have nothing to shield them or reduce the impact of the collision.  

As a result, our Portsmouth, VA, bicycle accident lawyers have found that our bicyclist clients experienced catastrophic and fatal injuries more often than other car accident victims. Across the Commonwealth of Virginia, 544 bicycle crashes occurred in 2021, resulting in 16 bicyclists being killed and 131 being seriously injured.

  • Equipment failure 
  • Human error 
  • Signal malfunctions 
  • Track defects 

Railroad Accidents are likely to result in catastrophic injuries and fatalities due to their long stopping distances, extreme weight, and significant mass, especially on long trains.

The Walk Score for pedestrians in Portsmouth is better than the bicycle score, at 77, but our Portsmouth, VA, pedestrian accident lawyers continue to see preventable collisions involving pedestrians. These collisions could often be avoided with better driver attention and obedience to traffic signals.  

In 2021, 1,399 pedestrians were hit by motor vehicles throughout Virginia, resulting in 125 pedestrian deaths and 1,325 injuries, including 413 serious injuries. The majority of these occurred in cities. These accidents were often caused by the following: 

  • Distracted driving, including cell phone use and texting 
  • Speeding 
  • Inattention 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Failure to obey traffic controls

When someone’s negligence tragically causes a death, the immediate family members or next of kin have a legal right to hold the responsible parties accountable through a civil lawsuit.  

Our Portsmouth, VA, wrongful death lawyers understand the devastation a wrongful death brings, and we are committed to supporting families during this difficult time and helping them recover financial compensation for their losses. While no amount of compensation can replace a lost loved one, it can provide financial security and a sense of justice.

In 2021, 1,399 pedestrians were hit by motor vehicles throughout Virginia, resulting in 125 pedestrian deaths and 1,325 injuries, including 413 serious injuries. The majority of these occurred in cities. These accidents were often caused by the following: 

  • Distracted driving, including cell phone use and texting 
  • Speeding 
  • Inattention 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Failure to obey traffic controls

Premises liability lawyers help injured individuals sue negligent property owners for injuries on their property. A property owner is legally obligated to provide a safe environment free of accident hazards for customers, visitors, and vendors.  

Our Portsmouth, VA, premises liability lawyers have helped clients with a wide range of premises liability claims, most commonly the following: 

Slips and falls are the most common type of premises liability claim, and these often happen as a result of the following: 

  • Wet floors 
  • Uneven surfaces 
  • Damaged concrete 
  • Slippery sidewalks due to snow and ice 
  • Trip hazards, such as obstructions 
  • Poorly maintained steps 
  • Poor lighting 

Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers secured the highest premises liability settlement in Virginia in 2022.

Traumatic brain injury may occur from a blow to the head or a jolt. According to the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injury. 

The other common causes of traumatic brain injury include the following: 

  • Being struck by or against an object 
  • Motor vehicle crashes 

Traumatic brain injury can result in permanent, life-altering impairment, including the following: 

  • Memory problems 
  • Problems with executive function 
  • Personality changes 
  • Physical disabilities 
  • Changes in vision, hearing, or the other senses 

Traumatic brain injury stemming from slips and falls is most common in older adults, while motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of traumatic brain injury in youth and younger adults.

Spinal cord injuries are often permanent and may lead to the following: 

  • Partial or complete paraplegia – paralysis of the lower half of the body 
  • Partial or complete quadriplegia – paralysis from the neck or shoulders down 
  • Loss of sensation 
  • Chronic pain 

There is currently no cure for a damaged spinal cord. As a result, our Virginia spinal cord injury lawyers have recovered significant compensation in these cases.

How Can a Portsmouth, VA, Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me?

Headshot of Griffin O'Hanlon

Ask The Car Crash Experts

Griffin O'Hanlon, Personal Injury Lawyer

“In general, it’s more of a common-sense approach to fault, the right of way, and the rules that govern drivers. Generally, I would say if a vehicle is backing up, let’s say backing out of a parking spot into a travel lane within a parking lot, that driver backing up generally has a duty to ensure that the travel lot they’re going into is free and clear of both drivers and pedestrians. Whereas if they back out and cause a wreck, a strong argument can be made that the driver is at fault. Another wrinkle when it comes to parking lots: drivers are expected to know that there could be pedestrians anywhere and everywhere. It’s an area where people are parking, getting out of their vehicles, going into stores, and restaurants, so the rules for how mindful a driver has to be of pedestrians is increased, and there’s just a more general duty of awareness of what could be around you given the set of circumstances for a particular parking lot.”

When you have been seriously injured in any type of accident, the extensive medical bills, pain, and therapy required can make your legal case seem overwhelming. A Portsmouth, VA, personal injury lawyer can help by dealing with the insurance company on your behalf and relieving you of the burden of your case. 

When you hire Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers, you can count on our compassionate attorneys to treat you like family, keeping you informed of all developments as your case progresses. We handle every detail, including the following: 

  • Filing your insurance claim 
  • Collecting evidence 
  • Obtaining witness statements 
  • Calculating your case value 
  • Filing a civil lawsuit 
  • Handling all communications with the insurance company 
  • Proving fault 
  • Skillfully negotiating a fair and reasonable settlement 
  • Compellingly presenting your case to a jury 

You will not have to worry about how much our services cost because we advance your case costs and do not charge upfront fees until we recover compensation for you. 

What Types of Damages Can a Portsmouth Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me Recover? 

Damages are the types of losses you have suffered from the injury and can include economic and non-economic damages. 

What are Economic Damages? 

Economic damages are your actual monetary losses, which can be proven. This includes medical expenses, property damage, and lost wages. 

Medical expenses include your historical expenses from when the accident occurred and future expenses that may result from the accident. We can help you anticipate these costs and ensure that the damages you pursue are sufficient to cover your future costs. Medical expenses include the following: 

  • Doctor bills 
  • Hospital bills 
  • Assistive devices 
  • Surgery 
  • Durable medical equipment 
  • Home health care 
  • Personal care services 
  • Housekeeping services you can no longer perform 

Lost wages include your missed days at work and your future lost income. This is calculated by determining your earning capacity during the time the injury is expected to prevent you from working. If the injury is permanent, your lifetime earning capacity will be calculated. When calculating your earning capacity, we consider the following: 

  • Your income before the accident 
  • Your training and education 
  • Your likely future wages, raises, promotions, and bonuses 
  • Inflation 

Non-Economic Damages 

Non-economic damages are subjective damages related to your quality of life following the accident. They include the pain and suffering you experienced leading up to your lawsuit and your future pain and suffering. Non-economic damages also include the following: 

  • Mental anguish 
  • Inconvenience 
  • Scarring 
  • Disfigurement 
  • Loss of society 
  • Humiliation 
  • Loss of capacity to enjoy life 

Punitive Damages 

Punitive damages are only available when you can prove the defendant maliciously or recklessly violated your right to safety. For example, in some cases, you can recover punitive damages in drunk driving incidents in Virginia. These damages are intended to punish the defendant rather than compensate the victim.  

Though Virginia law does not limit other types of damages, punitive damage awards are limited to $350,000 per occurrence. 

Wrongful Death Damages 

In a wrongful death claim, you are entitled to economic and non-economic damages on behalf of the deceased and your family. Punitive damages may also be available. Economic and non-economic damages may include the following: 

  • Pain and suffering of the family 
  • Pain and suffering of the deceased 
  • Loss of companionship, guidance, care, and support 
  • Funeral expenses 
  • Medical expenses of the deceased 
  • Lost income of the deceased 

How Can a Portsmouth Personal Injury Attorney Help Me Prove Someone Else Is Liable? 

To prevail in a civil lawsuit, you must be able to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that all of the following is true: 

  • The defendant owed a duty of care 
  • The defendant violated the duty of care 
  • You suffered an injury that you would not otherwise have suffered, except for the defendant’s breach of duty 
  • The breach of duty, and not something else, direct caused your injury 

It is not enough to be injured in an accident. It is not even enough to prove that another party’s negligence caused the accident. You must prove that you were injured because of the other party’s negligence. 

A preponderance of the evidence is a standard of proof that requires a showing that your version of events is more likely than not to have occurred. Proving this causal link between the other party’s negligence and your injuries is one of the most important services we provide at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers. 

What if I Am Found Partially to Blame for My Injuries? 

Virginia is one of the very few states that adhere to a pure contributory negligence law, which requires you to prove that you did not in any way contribute to your injuries. If a civil court finds you even one percent at fault, you can be barred from recovering compensation.  

One of the most common tactics of an insurance company in Portsmouth is to claim that you were partly responsible for the accident. If you do not have a competent, experienced personal injury lawyer in Portsmouth, VA, you may be unable to overcome an insurance company’s claim. 

At Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers, we perform detailed accident investigations so that our evidence supporting the defendant’s complete culpability is irrefutable in court. This ensures you will not miss out on the compensation you deserve. 

Can a Portsmouth Personal Injury Lawyer Help Me Deal with Insurance Companies? 

Insurance companies are always willing to collect premiums but do not want to pay claims, especially significant ones. As a result, they task their adjusters and expensive lawyers with eliminating or reducing the compensation they must pay.  

They may offer you an early lowball settlement or attempt to elicit statements from you that they can misconstrue and use against you. For example, they could claim that you admitted fault or told them that your injuries are less severe than you have purported. 

Be aware that any early settlement offer is unlikely to be sufficient to cover your economic losses, let alone your non-economic losses. If you accept this offer, the insurance company will require you to sign away your right to collect compensation in the future. 

Our Portsmouth personal injury lawyers will handle all communications with the insurance company on your behalf. It is crucial to avoid signing any documents from the insurance company without your attorney present. If the insurance company contacts you, we advise you to refer the representative to us without further comment.

What Is the Statute of Limitations for Personal Injury Cases in Portsmouth, Virginia?

The Virginia statute of limitations is two years for most accident cases. However, this does not mean you should wait to contact an attorney. An effective personal injury lawyer must complete extensive case investigation and preparation before it is filed.  

Waiting too long to contact an attorney can prevent your attorney from accessing the evidence needed to prove your case. You could miss out on the compensation you need and deserve. Don’t let this happen to you. Contact our Portsmouth personal injury attorneys as soon as possible so we can get to work for you.

Personal Injury Law Is All We Do

Our Portsmouth, VA, personal injury lawyers focus exclusively on personal injury law, and we have won millions for our clients because of our knowledge and experience. We know what it takes to prove a case and maximize your compensation. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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