Williamsburg Car Accident Lawyer

 We help auto accident victims every day, and do so with experience, commitment, and hard work.  Put our experience to work for you. Call now for a free consultation.

Suffering injuries in a car accident through no fault of your own is a traumatic experience. You should prioritize your healthcare instead of diving into the complex legal processes that follow these incidents. Therefore, one of the first steps to take after a car accident is to contact an experienced Williamsburg car accident attorney at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC

We understand the difficulties you face after a car accident, so we support you every step of the way. Our professional and compassionate car accident lawyer has over 40 years of award-winning experience, so we have the skills and knowledge to take on your case, regardless of size or scope. We strive to provide top-notch service to car accident victims and advocate for his or her rights. These types of cases are complicated, so we are here to help you understand the details of your injury claim.

Understanding Liability in Williamsburg Car Accident Cases

Car accidents inherently happen quickly, and shock and adrenaline affect your legal perceptions. Depending on the circumstances, any of the following parties potentially are liable:

  • Another driver: If another driver acted recklessly or negligently, failed to follow traffic laws, or drove under the influence, he or she is liable for your injuries.
  • A pedestrian: A pedestrian is responsible if he or she did not follow walking signals, jaywalked, or did not give cars enough time to stop for her or him.
  • A bicyclist: A bicyclist is liable if he or she does not abide by traffic laws, operate the bike responsibly, or leave other vehicles enough time to stop.
  • A government agency or property owner: If poor road conditions caused the accident, the government agency, other entity, or individual that owns the road is liable.
  • An employer: If a driver was on the job when he or she caused the accident, his or her employer is responsible.

In addition to identifying a liable party, we also help you gather evidence to prove the party caused the accident. As the victim, you carry the burden of proof, meaning you have to prove the following points:

  • The liable party owed you a duty of care
  • The party neglected this duty by being careless
  • The party’s negligence caused your injuries

Our Williamsburg car accident lawyer understands this seems intimidating to a layman victim, but there are steps you are able to take after the accident to make this process easier. We suggest taking as many photos and videos of vehicles and injuries as necessary to capture each one accurately. Also, take photos of any paperwork and information exchanged. Additionally, you should write down any witness contacts. This information benefits your case and significantly helps your lawyer identify important details.

Williamsburg Distracted Driving Accidents

In today’s fast-paced world, distractions are all around us, and unfortunately, they often find their way into our vehicles. Distracted driving accidents are a significant concern on the road, resulting in injuries or fatalities. When a driver’s attention diverts from the task of driving due to various distractions, his or her reaction window greatly decreases. According to NHTSA, taking five seconds to send or read a text at 55 mph is comparable to driving the distance of a football field with your eyes closed. 

If a distracted motorist caused you to suffer injuries in an accident, the award-winning lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, will fight for the compensation you deserve.  

Footage of a Waterman Law Centers MVA client’s serious rear-end accident, which was a result of speeding and negligence.

Types of Distracted Driving Accidents

The CDC pinpoints three types of distracted driving behaviors that lead to accidents, including the following: 

  • Using your phone: Texting and driving involve visual, manual, and cognitive attention, making texting among the most dangerous distractions. It takes the driver’s eyes off the road, hands off the wheel, and mind off the task of driving. Even using a hands-free device is distracting, as it diverts cognitive focus off of driving. 
  • Multitasking: Engaging in activities such as grooming, eating, or adjusting the radio or navigation system takes the driver’s attention away from the road, slowing reaction time if traffic patterns change or an emergency arises. 
  • Preoccupying: Chatting with passengers, daydreaming, or engaging in aggressive driving behaviors are types of cognitive distractions that will increase the chances of an accident. 

Liability in distracted driving accidents hinges on proving an offending driver’s distraction caused the accident. This is challenging, as distractions often leave minimal evidence at the scene. The experienced car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, will conduct an in-depth investigation to obtain the necessary evidence needed to prove fault. 

Evidence Required in a Distracted Driving Accident Claim

Proving negligence in a distracted driving accident claim involves proving the driver’s distraction was a cause of the accident. To build a strong case, specific types of evidence are vital in establishing liability. The following are key pieces of evidence often required for a successful distracted driving accident claim: 

  • Eyewitness testimony: Statements from eyewitnesses who saw the distracted driving behavior provide valuable accounts of the driver’s actions leading up to the accident. 
  • Cell phone records: If texting or phone usage was suspected, obtaining cell phone records reveals whether the driver was using his or her phone at the time of the accident. 
  • Accident scene evidence: Images of the accident scene, vehicle positions, and skid marks help reconstruct the sequence of events and identify any signs of distracted driving. 
  • Surveillance footage: Nearby surveillance cameras, such as those from businesses or traffic cameras, capture footage of the accident or the distracted driving behavior leading up to the collision. 
  • Expert testimony: Accident reconstructions, forensic analysts, or other professionals provide expert opinions on how the driver’s distraction contributed to the accident. 
  • Police reports: Official police crash reports often document the details of the accident, including any observed distracted driving behavior and statements from parties involved. 
  • Social media activity: In some cases, social media posts or timestamps show the driver was using his or her phone or engaging in distracted activities shortly before the accident. 

Proving negligence requires a comprehensive approach that combines multiple types of evidence to establish a clear link between distracted behavior and the accident. Working with an award-winning car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, is imperative in gathering evidence and building a strong claim. 

Hit-And-Run Accidents in Williamsburg

Hit-and-run accidents are distressing events that leave victims not only dealing with physical injuries but also grappling with the shock of being abandoned by a negligent driver. These types of accidents occur when an offending driver flees the scene without providing information or rendering aid. 

Gathering evidence becomes more challenging when the liable driver does not stop at the accident scene. Quick action is imperative to preserve any available proof, such as eyewitness accounts, accident scene pictures, license plate information, vehicle descriptions, surveillance footage, and calling the police. With the car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, on your side, you have the best chance of locating the offending driver and obtaining justice for your injuries. 

5 Reasons Why a Driver Flees an Accident Scene

Hit-and-run accidents leave victims in a state of uncertainty, but you do not have to face the aftermath alone. The award-winning car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, helps you navigate your claim from initial consultation to resolution. We take the burden off your shoulders by working to identify the liable party by utilizing our resources and connections to increase your chances of success. 

Generally, offending drivers flee the scene for the following reasons: 

  1. Driving while impaired: A motorist with a BAC of 0.08 or greater is more likely to flee a collision scene to avoid a DUI conviction. 
  2. Avoiding liability: A motorist with clear liability is more likely to flee an accident scene to avoid consequences, such as paying damages to the victim, and being charged with an offense, especially if his or her actions involved criminal violations, such as driving recklessly.  
  3. Driving while uninsured or underinsured: State law requires motorists to carry vehicle insurance unless they pay a fee when registering a vehicle, so uninsured or underinsured driver is more likely to flee to avoid being held accountable and having to pay for the victim’s losses out-of-pocket.
  4. Expired driver’s license:  Driving with a suspended or expired license holds harsh penalties in Virginia, leading an unlicensed motorist to flee the scene rather than face the consequences.
  5. Outstanding warrants: Traffic stops are among the most common ways law enforcement locate wanted individuals with outstanding warrants. A driver with an active warrant will be more likely to flee a scene rather than risk being identified.

Attorney Avery T. “Sandy” Waterman, Jr., Esq. helps you work with you to determine the best legal options for recovering compensation for injuries, including communicating with your insurance company, locating and notifying the offending driver, and determining whether UM or UIM coverage is appropriate in your case.

Overview of Virginia Hit-And-Run Laws

According to Section 46.2-894, motorists involved in a collision resulting in injuries or death must stop at the scene without blocking traffic. Once stopped, parties must exchange names, addresses, driver’s license numbers, and vehicle registration numbers. If anyone is injured, 9-1-1 must be called to ensure victims obtain proper medical attention. 

If a driver flees the scene before performing his or her lawful duties, he or she faces a felony charge in Virginia. 

Criminal charges factor into hit-and-run accident claims. However,  it is important to note they are not prerequisites to seek justice for your injuries and losses. If you locate the driver who caused the accident and prove fault, you have a right to seek compensation even if the driver is never convicted of a crime.

Drunk Driving Accidents in Williamsburg

Drunk driving accidents continue to be a pervasive issue on Virginia roads, resulting in long-term consequences for innocent victims. These accidents, caused by individuals who decide to get behind the wheel while under the influence of alcohol, lead to injuries, fatalities, and life-long emotional suffering. 

When a motorist operates a car while impaired, his or her reaction times are slowed, judgment is impaired, and the likelihood of causing an accident increases significantly. Seeking legal action against a drunk driver not only holds him or her accountable for his or her actions but also enables you to obtain the necessary compensation you need to aid in your recovery. The car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, is prepared to fight for you at every step of the legal process. 

Overview of Virginia DUI Laws

Virginia maintains strict laws on drinking and driving. Despite this, there were over 4,000 alcohol-related driving injuries and 247 fatalities as of 2021. According to state law, motorists over 21 years of age with a BAC of 0.08% or higher are deemed to be driving under the influence.

If a drunk motorist caused your accident and subsequent injuries, he or she will be arrested without a warrant for a DUI within three hours of the collision if law enforcement has probable cause.

If the offending motorist is convicted of a first-offense DUI, he or she will lose their license for a year. First offenders must have a mandatory ignition interlock device installed on their vehicle to prevent drivers from turning his or her vehicle on if alcohol is in their system. If the offending motorist is convicted of a second offense DUI, he or she faces a three-year license suspension.

For drivers under legal drinking age, Virginia has a zero-tolerance policy regarding alcohol consumption. Motorists under 21 will be convicted of illegal consumption if he or she has a blood alcohol concentration of 0.02%.

Under the law, you have the right to seek justice if you were injured by an impaired driver. Speak with an award-winning car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, to understand your legal rights and options. 

How to Prove the Offending Driver Was Drunk

Proving that an intoxicated driver caused your accident involves gathering evidence that proves the driver’s impairment at the time of the collision, establishing a direct link between his or her impaired state and the collision. 

The professional drunk driving accident lawyer will gather the following type of evidence to prove the opposing driver violated the law by driving drunk: 

  • Police reports: Official police reports often document key details about the accident, including observations of the driver’s behavior, any field sobriety tests conducted, and the results of breathalyzers or BAC tests. 
  • Eyewitness statements: Individuals who observed the driver’s behavior, such as slurred speech, erratic driving, or signs of intoxication before or after the collision, provide important testimony. 
  • Accident scene evidence: Images of the accident scene, vehicle positions, skid marks, and any open containers of alcohol in the vehicle support the claim of a driver’s intoxication. 
  • Surveillance footage: If available, nearby surveillance cameras will capture whether the driver’s behavior or actions displayed signs of intoxication. 
  • Medical records: If the offending driver received medical treatment after the accident, medical records document signs of impairment, such as slurred speech, bloodshot eyes, or the smell of alcohol.  
  • Admissions of intoxication: In some cases, drivers admit to law enforcement, witnesses, or medical personnel that they were intoxicated. 
  • Expert testimony:  Accident reconstructionists, toxicologists, or other experts provide professional opinions on how the driver’s intoxication contributed to the accident.
  • Prior convictions: If the opposing driver has a history of DUI/DWI convictions, it displays evidence of a pattern of behavior. 

Proving a drunk driving accident requires a thorough investigation and evidence to build a compelling case. The lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, handles all aspects of your claim so you are able to concentrate on recovery. 

Contributory Negligence in Car Accident Claims

In Virginia, the legal principle of contributory negligence plays a crucial role in car accident claims and obtaining compensation. Unlike other states that follow comparative negligence, where damages are apportioned based on each party’s degree of fault, in Virginia you must be free of fault for your accident and subsequent injuries to achieve a favorable outcome. This is one important reason why you must work alongside an experienced Williamsburg car accident lawyer. 

If a jury deems that your negligence contributed to an accident, regardless of the extent, you will be entirely barred from recovering damages from the responsible party. For example, if a motorist fails to signal while changing lanes and is subsequently struck by another driver who was speeding, the injured driver could be barred from recovering damages due to his or her failure to signal, even if the speeding driver bears a significant portion of the blame. 

However, there are notable exceptions that apply in specific circumstances. For example: 

  • Seatbelts: You not wearing a seatbelt does not prohibit you from recovering for personal injuries in a car accident claim in Virginia.
  • Willful and wanton misconduct: If the offending driver engaged in willful or wanton misconduct, Virginia’s contributory negligence law does not prohibit you from pursuing a claim.
  • Last clear chance doctrine: If the offending motorist had a last clear chance to prevent the accident, even if you were initially negligent, you are able to pursue a claim for damages. This doctrine recognizes the at-fault party had an opportunity to prevent the accident and failed to do so.

Navigating the legal landscape of a car accident claim is complex, especially considering the strict application of the contributory negligence rule, without a skilled lawyer on your side.

Potentially Recoverable Damages After a Williamsburg Car Accident

After sustaining injuries in a car accident, you might worry about paying for treatment and other losses, but we fight for you to receive the compensation you deserve for these losses. Depending on the nature and severity of your injuries and other circumstances, you are able to recover the following past, present, and future damages:

  • Pain, suffering, and inconvenience
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Continuing disability and limitations
  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages from missed work
  • Mental anguish

It is essential to keep in mind that Virginia has a general two-year statute of limitations on filing a car accident claim. While this seems like a long time, the process is complicated, and delays get in the way. Therefore, you should contact a Williamsburg car accident lawyer as soon as possible to help you file your claim so you do not miss the opportunity to receive the compensation you deserve.

Whiplash Accidents in Williamsburg

Whiplash injuries are a common consequence of car accidents. Even if injuries seem minor, they worsen in the days or weeks following a collision, leading to significant pain, discomfort, and disruption in the lives of victims. 

Whiplash is a soft tissue injury that arises when the head is forcefully jolted back and forth, commonly seen in rear-end car accidents. This sudden movement strains neck muscles, ligaments, and tendons, leading to the following symptoms: 

  • Neck stiffness
  • Muscles and ligaments tears or injuries 
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Sensations such as burning or prickling
  • Shoulder or back pain

If you do not address whiplash injuries promptly, injuries will affect a victim’s capacity to work, engage in everyday activities, and enjoy life as before the collision. In some cases, chronic pain develops, requiring ongoing medical treatment and rehabilitation.  

Insurance companies attempt to downplay the seriousness of whiplash injuries or offer inadequate resolutions to accident claims. At Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, we negotiate on your behalf to obtain the compensation you need for recovery, accounting for present and future losses. 

What Negligent Driving Behaviors Cause Whiplash Accidents?

Whiplash accidents typically occur due to certain driving behaviors that result in sudden or abrupt collisions. These behaviors lead to the forceful backward and forward movement of the head and neck, causing the soft tissue to stretch and strain. 

The following are negligent driving behaviors that commonly contribute to whiplash accidents: 

  • Rear-end video collisions: One of the most common causes of whiplash injuries is rear-end accidents. When a driver is struck by a vehicle from behind i.e., rear-ended, the impact propels the leading vehicle forward while the occupants’ bodies are restrained by the seat belt, causing the head and neck to snap forward and back. 
  • Sudden stops: Slamming on the brakes suddenly, especially at high speeds, results in collisions if the vehicle following is unable to stop in time. The sudden deceleration leads to the standard whiplash motion. 
  • Acceleration or deceleration: Rapid acceleration followed by abrupt braking, such as in stop-and-go traffic, contributes to whiplash injuries due to the rapid shift in movements. 
  • Collisions at intersections: Collisions at intersections, particularly when one vehicle is turning, and the other fails to yield or runs a red light, leading to an impact that causes the head and neck to move suddenly. 
  • Sudden lane changes: Abrupt lane changes without proper signaling result in collisions where the vehicles involved experience significant shifts in speed and direction. 
  • Collision while stationary: Being rear-ended while stopped at a traffic light or in traffic congestion causes immediate forward and backward movement of the head and neck. 
  • Distracted driving: Engaging in activities such as texting, talking on the phone, or using in-car entertainment systems causes drivers to react slowly to changes in traffic conditions, increasing the likelihood of abrupt collisions. 
  • Tailgating: Following too closely to the vehicle in front leaves little room to react to sudden changes in speed, increasing the risk of rear-end collisions. 
  • Speeding: Driving at excessive speeds reduces the time available to react to changes in traffic, making collisions more likely to occur with greater force. 

It is important to note that whiplash injuries occur even at low speeds, as the suddenness of the collision, the positioning of the body, and the victim’s fragility play a role in the trauma to the neck and head. If a driver’s negligent road behavior caused you to suffer whiplash injuries, speak with the experienced car accident lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, for an assessment of your claim. 

Why Should You Hire a Williamsburg Car Accident Lawyer?

Because every car accident and insurer is different, the claims process is confusing. While you have the option to represent yourself and handle everything on your own, you risk being misled and making mistakes likely will prevent you from receiving maximum compensation. With our trustworthy and knowledgeable lawyer by your side, you are able to fully focus on your healthcare. We support you throughout the entire process and manage the following aspects of your claim:

  • Gathering evidence like police reports, medical records, and employment records
  • Answering all your legal questions
  • Filing your claim timely and otherwise properly
  • Negotiating with insurance companies
  • Determining who is liable for your injuries
  • Calculating your damages
  • Utilizing resources like medical professionals and accident reconstruction specialists
  • Taking your case to trial if necessary
  • Researching medical and technical literature

Our understanding, compassionate car accident lawyer will listen to your story and take the weight off your shoulders by advocating for your rights and speaking on your behalf. We ensure your best interests are protected every step of the way and do everything to make the legal process as stress-free as possible.

Consult a Seasoned Williamsburg Car Accident Lawyer at Waterman Law Centers, PLLC

Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident is not easy, especially if you have suffered injuries due to someone else’s negligence. If this is the case with you, you should contact a Williamsburg car accident attorney immediately to fight for compensation while you focus on recovery. At Waterman Law Centers, PLLC, we are able to help you with every aspect of your claim so you have a better chance of a good outcome.

Insurance companies make recovering damages difficult, but we have over 40 years of award-winning experience to handle negotiations on your behalf and enhance your chances of maximum compensation. Attorney Avery T. “Sandy” Waterman, Jr., Esq. was named to The Best Lawyers in America for Personal Injury during 2007-2023, and was voted its “Lawyer of the Year” for Personal Injury by his peers in Southeast Virginia in 2022; and Waterman Law Centers has been listed as a Metropolitan Tier 1 Best Law Firm for Personal Injury in U.S. News & World Report for 2021-2023. Give us a call at (757) 881-9881 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation.

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Reasons We’re The Right Choice:

  • We’re available 24/7 to our clients
  • We offer free confidential consultations
  • More than 35+ years of experience
  • Honored with numerous credentials and awards
  • Recovered millions of dollars for clients

Going the Extra Mile: Accident Reconstruction

Notably, I successfully made a case for a bicyclist’s wrongful death despite the offending driver being the only surviving eyewitness and testifying self-servingly he was not at fault. Resourcefully using a surveyor, engineer and doctor to collect, analyze and reconstruct collision scene debris/data, a definite computer simulation for trial was created to refute the driver’s exculpatory story. Play our reconstruction exhibit video to see how the physical evidence “spoke” that the driver actually was inattentive and veered into the bicyclist fatally.

In another wrongful death case that was defended vigorously by four law firms simultaneously, I prevailed at jury trial by using an accident reconstructionist against the offending tractor-trailer truck driver.

Let me do something special for your case too!

What steps should I take after being in a vehicle accident?

Take ten. Too often what happens after the accident affects the final outcome of what happened during the accident. Hopefully you already are on the right track, but be sure to consider the following:


Immediately notify
authorities about the
accident and the wrongdoer


Do not decline medical attention offered at or after the accident scene


Comply with all medical prescriptions, restriction, and follow-up


Do not discuss the accident with any wrongdoer’s insurer or investigator


Cooperate with your personal insurance company representatives


Photograph physical injuries and accident scene


Write down what happened in the accident and what problems you are having


So not sign any agreement with, or accept any check from, the opposition


Save all receipts and other documents


Contact an experienced lawyer like Mr. Waterman as soon as possible to discuss your case
Following these simple directions can be the difference between you being revictimized and you obtaining restitution
for your vehicle accident.

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“Mr. Waterman is an excellent personal injury attorney. He exacted me a settlement for a motor vehicle accident that was beyond my expectations. His presentation (including professionally done illustrations) was so powerful that opposing counsel settled rather than proceed to trial. My experience with Sandy could not have been better!”

Paul Lamont


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