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Comprehensive Guide for Understanding Kentucky Car Accidents

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Kentucky Car Accident Guide

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The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found there were 39,508 fatal motor vehicle crashes in the United States during 2021. The state of Kentucky experienced 734 fatal crashes within 2021, with a recorded 806 resulting deaths. After getting ranked as 6th in the nation for the most dangerous for road fatalities, car collisions are clearly a major issue.

What are the steps an injured person should take following an unexpected car accident in Kentucky? This comprehensive car accident guide aims to provide all the necessary steps and considerations for dealing with personal injury claims. Whether you wish to seek compensation through your insurance’s coverage or by filing a lawsuit against the at-fault party, the attorneys with Morrin Law are here to help.

In this page we will define a passenger motor vehicle, list the diverse types of collisions, and address the resulting injuries and damages that can occur. From there we will outline the legal procedures you will go through when pursuing compensation for a car accident injury. Finally, we will highlight how insightful hiring a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury attorney can be for your case.

Get ready as Morrin Law guides you through every step towards being awarded fair compensation for your injuries.

How Do Car Accidents Occur?

A passenger car (standard motor vehicle) is defined in Kentucky as automobiles and trucks that have a registered weight of 6,000 pounds or less.  

Whenever a driver gets behind the wheel of a motor vehicle, they do so with the intent of getting from “point A” to “point B” in a safe manner. However, there are numerous ways in which an unexpected car collision can occur.

Example scenarios of car accident types include, but are not limited to:

  • A single car accident caused by hazardous roadway conditions;
  • A multi-car accident involving more than two vehicles in the case of a “pile-up;”
  • A rear-end collision caused by a driver striking the back of another car;
  • A vehicle rollover where a car flips over caused by speeding, drunk driving, or unsafe driving conditions;
  • A side-impact collision (also known as a T-Bone crash) where the side of a passenger vehicle is struck by the front end of another vehicle, usually caused by speeding or distracted driving; and
  • A head-on collision caused by two vehicles making an impact from the front of each vehicle by traveling in the wrong direction or crossing lanes into oncoming traffic.

Common Car Accident Injuries

Depending on the severity of the collision and how fast each driver was operating their vehicle, the resulting injuries from a Kentucky car accident can range from any of the following:

Keep in mind that you may not experience any of the signs of a potential injury until after the collision. This is why it is so important to receive medical attention following the crash. Even if your injury is not listed above, you still may be able to seek compensation for the resulting damages. Contact Morrin Law Office to discuss your case details. We also represent those who lost a loved one in a car accident seeking compensation for wrongful death.


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Kentucky Car Accident Data

Provided annually by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet, the Traffic Collision Report outlines data related to all types of accidents that occur within the state. In its 2022 report, there were 130,042 total reported collisions in Kentucky. Out of these, there were 723 fatalities.

The following provides Kentucky statistics relating to car accidents:

  • In 2022, there were 3,625,953 registered motor vehicles in the state of Kentucky;
  • There were 175,537 passenger cars involved in all collisions;
  • There were 872 passenger cars involved in fatal collisions; and
  • Passenger cars participated in the greatest number of collisions during 2022 (89% of all collisions and 70% in fatal collisions).

The report also provides data on the contributing factors of the car accidents that occurred in 2022. A contributing factor would refer to any action or inaction that caused or contributed to a collision. When it comes to collisions in Kentucky, police officers differentiate between human/driver factors, vehicular factors, and environmental factors.

The following table provides information pertaining to the human factors most associated with Kentucky collisions in 2022:

Human Factors

All Collisions

Fatal Collisions

Driver inattention



Not under proper control



Failed to yield



Misjudged clearance



Following too close






Too fast for conditions



Disregarded traffic control



Alcohol involvement







As shown in the table above, the human factor that contributed to most car accidents in Kentucky during 2022 was driver inattention.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the leading factor of most car crashes occurs from inattention. Also referred to as distracted driving, this is considered any non-driving activity that potentially takes the driver’s attention away from the primary task of operating their vehicle.

Further, the three main types of distractions include visual, manual, or cognitive distractions.

  1. Visual distractions: Includes any action that involves taking your eyes off the road. Examples include texting, watching a video, or looking at another accident on the road;
  2. Manual distractions: Includes any action that involves taking your hands off the steering wheel. Examples can include texting, eating, or searching for something in the back of the vehicle;
  3. Cognitive distractions: Includes any action that involves taking your mind off the task of driving. Examples include texting, talking on the phone, or playing a game on your phone.

Texting is the most dangerous form of distraction, as it involves all three types of distraction, therefore making the biggest impact on a driver.

Phone use is one of the major causes of car accidents across the United States. The NHTSA page on distracted driving stated that 80% of crashes and 65% of near crashes involve some form of distraction within three seconds of the collision.

A study by Carnegie Mellon University found that using a cell phone in any capacity while driving a motor vehicle reduces a person’s brain activity associated with driving by 37%. Another study conducted by the University of Utah found that “people are as impaired when they drive and talk on a cell phone as they are when they drive intoxicated at the legal blood-alcohol limit (0.08%).” The study then claimed that if legislators wish to address distracted driving, they should consider banning cell phone use while operating a vehicle.

However, Kentucky did just that. In 2010, Kentucky passed HB 415 to ban texting while driving for drivers of all ages while the vehicle is in motion. Exceptions are provided for drivers 18 and older using a GPS device and reading, selecting, or entering a phone number to make a call. For Kentucky drivers under 18, any use of a personal communication device is prohibited while the car is moving.

Despite cell phone use being banned over a decade ago, this form of distraction remains a large issue when it comes to Kentucky car collisions. In 2022, there were 955 reported collisions with cell phone use as a contributing factor. Out of those, there were 2 fatal collisions.

What Steps Should You Take Following a Car Collision in Kentucky?

It should be addressed that no one intends to get into a car accident. However, when another driver’s actions or inactions are considered negligent and result in a collision, you should be aware of the steps to take in the aftermath of the crash. Morrin Law Firm advises that you consider the following in the moments following a Kentucky car collision:

  • Remain at the scene: You should always remain at the scene of a collision. Especially if another person caused or contributed to the crash, you will need to stay at the site of the crash to await law enforcement and medical responders. Additionally, you could face criminal penalties for leaving the scene of an accident.
  • Exchange information: Kentucky Statute Section 580 states, “The operator or person having or assuming authority of the operator, or ownership of the vehicle, shall give the occupant of the vehicle, or person struck, if requested, the registration number of the vehicle, if any, and also the names and addresses of the owner, the occupants, and operator.”
  • Seek medical attention: Even if you think you are initially fine following a car collision, you should receive medical attention. Whether you allow the emergency responders (if available) to assess any possible injuries following the crash, or if you see a doctor in the days following, it is extremely important that you have a medical professional determine any injuries. This is imperative if you believe the other person or party involved caused the collision and you intend to seek compensation for your injuries.
  • Gather evidence to support your case: With any civil matter, having evidence to support your case is extremely important. Basic information to obtain following a car crash includes, but is not limited to:
    • Other person or parties’ full name and contact details;
    • Information regarding their insurance and policy number;
    • Driver’s license number and license plate number;
    • Make, model, year, and color of vehicle(s) involved; and
    • Location and time of accident.
  • Contact law enforcement: In most instances of a motor vehicle collision, the police will be contacted to investigate the crash and provide an accident report. However, if a Kentucky police officer does not show up to your crash site, you will be responsible for filling out a crash report on your own. Kentucky Statute Section 189.635(4) explains that any person involved in a car accident resulting in property damage exceeding $500 in which a police officer does not appear to investigate must file a civilian traffic collision report within ten (10) days of the accident. You do not need to complete this form if a police officer responded to your crash and conducted an investigation already.

If you have any questions regarding the steps to take following a Kentucky car crash, contact Morrin Law.

Dealing with Insurance and Kentucky’s No-Fault State

Before getting into the options for compensation following a car collision, you should first familiarize yourself with how the state of Kentucky handles insurance:

  • Kentucky’s No-Fault system – Being a “no-fault state” means that after a Kentucky car accident, each person’s insurance covers the medical expenses and losses, regardless of who caused the collision. This provides a fundamental system for handling car crashes. Instead of immediately trying to sue the person responsible, the no-fault system provides compensation first through each person’s own insurance.
  • Personal Injury Protection (PIP) coverage – In Kentucky, every driver is obligated to maintain PIP coverage for any medical expenses, lost wages, or other resulting damages from a car wreck. Typically, the minimum PIP coverage in Kentucky is $10,000.

Kentucky drivers do have the option to “opt out” and sue the other person involved who they believe was at fault. This is done by filling out a No-Fault Rejection Form.

If you are confused about what your own insurance should cover following an unexpected car collision, contact the Kentucky personal injury team with Morrin Law.

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Potential Settlement Routes for Car Accident Injuries

Before going further, we should explain the differences between a personal injury claim and a lawsuit for a Kentucky car accident.

A personal injury claim is the initial step following a collision, in which you attempt to receive compensation from your own insurance company to cover any financial losses. A pro of filing a personal injury claim is that you do not need to initially prove fault, and your PIP coverage should result in prompt coverage for the damages. However, PIP coverage is capped at a certain amount, meaning it may not fully cover all your damages if you suffered a severe injury. Additionally, you cannot seek compensation for pain and suffering from a personal injury claim.

A lawsuit can be filed in certain scenarios. A positive reason for attempting to file a lawsuit is that you can seek higher compensation amounts, as well as receiving compensation for pain and suffering. However, there is also an uncertainty to trial and its potential outcome. It is also worth noting that going to trial can be expensive.

Morrin Law can consult with the other party or their attorney regarding the calculation of damages, along with negotiating for a fair settlement. This can include sending a formal demand letter to outline your desired compensation, along with negotiating with both insurance companies to reach a mutual agreement for settlement. However, in the scenario in which the option of settlement fails, you can take your case to court.

What Scenarios Allow You to Sue for Damages?

Damages are considered the financial losses that occur from a car accident injury. After a car collision, the resulting damages may include:

  • Past, present, and future projected medical expenses;
  • Lost wages and benefits;
  • Diminished earning potential;
  • Property damage to vehicle; and
  • Replacement cost for new vehicle.

While it is understandable that a person in a car accident would experience pain and suffering from the resulting injuries, you cannot seek compensation for the non-economical damages unless you exceed certain thresholds.

Under Kentucky Statute Section 304.39-060(2), “a plaintiff may recover damages in tort for pain, suffering, mental anguish, and inconvenience because of bodily injury, sickness or disease arising out of the ownership, maintenance, operation or use of such motor vehicle only in the event that the benefits which are payable for such injury as “medical expense” or which would be payable but for any exclusion or deductible authorized by this subtitle exceed”:

  • $1,000 in medical expenses;
  • Broken bone(s);
  • Permanent injury or disfigurement; and/or
  • Wrongful death.

In other words, a person injured in a car accident may not seek filing a lawsuit against the at-fault person or party unless the above thresholds are exceeded.

What are Your Rights for Compensation?

Understanding comparative fault is important if your case goes to trial. Under Kentucky Statute Section 411.182, the amount of compensation awarded in a case where both or multiple parties are found partially at fault will be reduced by the amount of damages you may be entitled to recover. Even if you were found to be mainly at fault for the collision, you can still try and recover the losses through your PIP coverage.

Consulting legal experts with Morrin Law can immensely help your personal injury case. We have years of experience representing those injured in Kentucky car accidents. When you entrust our legal team to represent your case, we take our role very seriously. We will provide you with as much help and legal insight as you need during this process.

Adhering to Kentucky’s Time Limits for Personal Injury Claims

Like most legal matters, there is an allotted time limit to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party.

This is one area that too many injured individuals take lightly. However, the lawyers with Morrin Law will continue to stress the importance of filing early to all our clients. This is because a late filing can result in the loss of important evidence or even a full dismissal of your case. Your medical recovery is too important to lose out on the compensation you deserve. That said, it is imperative that you understand the statute of limitations regarding car accidents in Kentucky:

An injured individual wishing to file a lawsuit against the at-fault person or party, if they have passed the necessary threshold for seeking a lawsuit, has two (2) years from the date of the accident or last PIP payment to sue for damages occurring from an accident involving a motor vehicle.

If you have any questions pertaining to Kentucky’s time limits for filing a lawsuit, contact the personal injury lawyers with Morrin Law.

How Important is Securing the Right Car Accident Attorney?

Extremely important! This is because an attorney can make a significant impact in a personal injury case. First, dealing with personal injury claims or lawsuits can be complicated. By hiring a representative who is experienced in car accident injuries, you can put your trust into a legal expert who understands the intricacies of Kentucky laws, insurance policies, and personal injury claims. The team with Morrin Law aims to guide all our clients through the civil procedure to make sure you’re informed throughout every step.

Having a personal injury attorney represent you also helps to make sure you have all the necessary evidence to have a successful case. The lawyers with Morrin Law will thoroughly investigate the surrounding facts of your car accident. We can contact the insurance companies on your behalf to discuss settlement options, along with ensuring the evidence you have is sufficient if the case requires trial.

Another positive reason for hiring a personal injury attorney is their skillset for negotiations. Morrin Law understands the pain and suffering your injuries have caused you. When you hire us to represent your case, we will do everything we can to push for maximum compensation for the damages resulting from your Kentucky car accident.

Finally, Morrin Law works on a contingency basis. That means we only get paid if we are successful in winning your case. We offer this to make sure legal representation is offered to individuals regardless of their financial situation. At the end of the day, we are not successful unless you are awarded fair compensation for your injuries.

Contact the Commercial Truck Personal Injury Attorneys with Morrin Law

If you’ve been injured at the hands of another person or company’s negligence, you should not be held responsible for any resulting damages. It is already hard enough to go through the physical pain of an injury, on top of the mental anguish that may come with missing work or piling medical bills. If you’ve recently been injured by a semi-truck collision, consider hiring a personal injury attorney with Morrin Law.

Our personal injury attorneys have the knowledge and legal insight to accurately represent your case. We understand the ins and outs of litigation in Kentucky and can take on the bulk of the work by negotiating with insurance companies and the at-fault party on your behalf. If your case requires going to trial, our attorneys will fight to ensure that you receive fair compensation to support your injuries.

Contact the office of Morrin Law Office today at (859) 358-0300 to receive a free case evaluation to go over the details of your Kentucky semi-truck accident. Our firm works on a contingency basis, so we only win when you do!

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Given the sheer size and weight of a commercial truck, it is no surprise that they can cause extensive damage and injuries to those involved in a truck collision. You may be facing long-term injuries that require extensive time and money. This is where a personal injury claim can benefit those who have become victims of a truck accident. If you file a personal injury claim in Kentucky and it is successful, you may be able to receive compensation for any past, present, or future damage caused by the collision.

  • Medical expenses;
  • Lost wages;
  • Pain and suffering;
  • Funeral expenses for wrongful death; or
  • Any other accident-related expenses.

It is important to first consult with a personal injury attorney when filing a claim. An experienced attorney can review your case to help determine your injuries and the impact it has caused on your life.

Get Started on Your Case Today with Morrin Law Firm

At the Law Offices of Morrin Law, we aim to be more than just a legal firm. Our goal is to be your resolute representative and partner throughout your healing journey. Car accidents can be devastating, even resulting in potential wrongful death. If you were injured in a Kentucky car collision and believe you are entitled to compensation due to another person’s negligence, consider hiring one of our experienced personal injury attorneys.

We provide new clients with a risk-free case evaluation when you call us at (859) 358-0300.