Injured in a Car Accident in Hawaii?

Leavitt Yamane & Soldner Can Help You

Car accidents are an unfortunate fact of life in Hawaii. The Hawaii Department of Transportation reported 125 traffic fatalities in 2012. Honolulu alone has more than its fair share of accidents, due to heavy traffic from the tourist industry and other causes of car accidents, such as drunk driving, distracted driving, and speeding.

At Leavitt Yamane & Soldner, we help automobile accident victims. Our knowledgeable Honolulu car accident attorneys can deal with the at-fault driver's insurance company, and help you receive the compensation you need to move forward. With more than 100 years of combined experience, we can draw on our skill and resources to ensure that your rights are fully protected.

If we believe you have a claim, our car accident lawyers will immediately go to work to:

  • Gather evidence concerning your accident
  • Find and interview any witnesses
  • Review your insurance policy and the policy of the other driver
  • Explore every avenue and inform you of your legal options
  • Battle the insurance companies on your behalf
  • Take your case to court if necessary

We proudly offer free initial consultations to prospective clients: (808) 518-2120

Steps to Take Immediately After an Accident in Honolulu, HI

If you are involved in a car crash, you may be injured, stressed, confused and wondering what to do after the accident.

The best steps to take immediately following an accident are:

  • Call the police
  • Collect and document the evidence at the scene by taking photos of the scene, the roadway, and gathering names, addresses and phone numbers of witnesses.
  • Get medical attention
  • Notify your insurance company
  • Call a lawyer

Whose Insurance Will Pay for the Accident?

Hawaii has a "no-fault" car accident insurance system. This means that your own insurance policy will provide you with personal injury protection (PIP) benefits up to $10,000 to cover your medical expenses regardless of who was at fault in the accident.

However, depending on the specifics of your accident, there still may be insurance questions regarding additional aspects of your car accident claim. Although state law requires all drivers to carry liability and PIP automobile insurance, not all drivers do. A different approach may be necessary in auto accidents with the uninsured. Your PIP should cover your medical expenses up to $10,000. If you have an additional claim that would normally be covered by the other driver's insurance (except that the other driver has no insurance), you may need to use your uninsured-underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM). Depending on your losses, that may still not be enough to cover your losses.

If you have been involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist, you should file a UM/UIM claim with your insurance company, then talk with a car accident lawyer as soon as you can. Our job is to keep you from being shortchanged by the insurance companies and to identify other sources of compensation when possible to help you recover fully.

Common Causes of Car Accidents

Hawaii's roadways are among the most heavily traveled in the nation. Congested roads contribute to the problem of motor vehicle collisions. Here in the Islands, tourist attractions, unfamiliar roads, and preoccupation with vacation activities take drivers' eyes and attention off of the road ahead.

The Hawaii Department of Health says motor vehicle accidents (excluding motorcycle accidents) were the state's fourth leading cause of death from 2008 to 2012, with an average of 55 deaths each year.

Speeding was the most common contributing factor in fatal accidents. The state says 41 percent of drivers in motor vehicle accidents were speeding. Additionally, 40 percent of drivers involved in fatal motor vehicle crashes tested positive for alcohol, 23 percent tested positive for drugs, and 49 percent tested positive for either alcohol or drugs. Car accidents occur every hour of the day, with 5.6 million occurring nationwide in a year.

A recent report to Congress said about 40 percent of driver errors that lead to crashes are due to:

  • Inattention
  • Distracted driving
  • Not looking ahead adequately

More than a third were caused by recklessness, such as driving too fast (speeding), following too closely (tailgating), etc. Another common cause of car accidents is impairment by alcohol (drunk driving), drugs (drugged driving) and fatigue (drowsy driving).

Most Dangerous Intersections in Hawaii

The Hawaii Department of Transportation lists the most dangerous intersections based on accident data from a multi-year period.

Many of the intersections are located in central Honolulu:

  • Beretania Street and Ward Avenue
  • Piikoi and Kinau Street
  • Beretania Street and Piikoi Street
  • Moanalua Road and Hoolaulea Street
  • King Street and Isenberg Street
  • Kapiolani Boulevard and Keeaumoku Street
  • Waialae Avenue and 16th Street
  • School Street, Iolani Avenue and Queen Emma Street, Lusitana Street

Honolulu Personal Injury Attorneys Protecting Your Right to File an Injury Claim

In our state we have what is known as a modified no fault system. That means that, in addition to your PIP coverage, you may be entitled to bring a personal injury claim against the other driver.

This can happen in any of the following circumstances:

  • Your PIP benefits have gone above $5,000, exceeding the "tort threshold";
  • Your injuries were serious enough to cause significant permanent loss of use of a part or function of your body or permanent and serious disfigurement; or
  • You have lost a loved one in the accident and have a wrongful death claim.

Every case presents unique issues and challenges. At Leavitt Yamane & Soldner, we are passionate about what we do. Our Honolulu car accident lawyers have been listed among Hawaii Super Lawyers® and awarded membership in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum®. We are here to protect your rights and to help you to obtain the compensation you deserve.

Contact our firm today for our client-focused services.

Our Professionals Are Here to Listen

If you have sustained an injury and want to know if you are eligible to pursue legal action, it is important to obtain help right away. Call our firm at (808) 518-2120 or fill out the quick form below.

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