When Should You Get a Car Accident Lawyer?
It only takes seconds for a normal drive to turn into something catastrophic. This is true even if the collision was entirely the other person's fault. As of 2021, there are approximately 39,500 fatal crashes per year in the United States.
Thousands more accidents result in serious injury and property damage. It's imperative to understand when to hire a car accident lawyer so you can take the appropriate actions.
Not quite sure where to start? We've written a brief guide on finding the right car accident attorney for you. Let's explore what you need to know.
You Have Serious Injuries
It's not uncommon for collisions to result in serious injuries. This is especially true if you were involved in a T-bone car accident.
Sometimes, people don't realize they have serious injuries until after they seek medical attention. Internal bleeding, for instance, can manifest days or weeks later and cause significant health problems if unchecked.
Even if you feel okay after a collision, it's best to visit a doctor to get their opinion. Not only will this rule out potential complications, but it can also establish medical records for your injuries.
It's Unclear Who Was at Fault
Hiring a lawyer in car accident situations is crucial if it's unclear who was at fault. If you don't hire an attorney, you risk the other party working with one to take action against you.
It's best to be preemptive and protect yourself before this situation arises. Keep this in mind when considering "Should I find a car accident lawyer near me?"
The Insurance Carrier Ignores the Claim
Many people are unaware that one of the primary goals insurance companies have is to not pay. They'll likely look for any reason they can to avoid disbursing funds after an accident.
Sometimes, they do so in bad faith. This refers to a situation where they intentionally break rules to withhold money from the insured party. Your attorney can quickly recognize behavior like this and take action against it.
Without their help, you likely wouldn't have another course of action. You may not even realize you're being taken advantage of.
Multiple Parties Were Involved
Determining the fault for an accident between two people is difficult enough. When multiple parties get involved, it's exponentially harder. Things become even murkier if more than one party has partial blame.
Rather than attempting to figure this out on your own, you should contact a reputable attorney to handle your case. This will give you the greatest chance of success.
Benefits of Hiring a Lawyer
The benefits of hiring a lawyer for a car accident can't be overlooked. These can dictate whether you receive the compensation you deserve. Let's explore them in detail below.
Negotiate with Your Insurance Company
Insurance companies have teams of experienced lawyers on their side to represent them. It takes a knowledgeable attorney to negotiate on your behalf.
Insurance companies are known for making the negotiation process as convoluted as possible. They often exclusively use legal jargon and attempt to steer conversations away from unfavorable topics.
With the right attorney on your side, you can overcome these obstacles and negotiate a sufficient amount. Hiring a lawyer could also mean the difference between whether your insurance company pays at all.
Prove Your Injuries
In many cases, the other party will try to argue you aren't as injured as you claim. They'll also do so even if it's clear you're injured.
They won't say you didn't get hurt at all. They'll simply argue your injuries aren't as bad as you portray them. Your attorney will provide a robust defense that consists of various forms of evidence.
For instance, they could use a combination of eyewitness statements, security camera footage, and medical records to show your claims match what transpired. It takes an experienced attorney to succeed in situations like these, so never settle for less.
Determine Your Claim's Value
Your attorney can quickly determine the value of your claim. They've likely dealt with hundreds of situations like yours before and have a strong idea of what you can expect. They can also deduce whether you have a claim at all.
In some situations, it's not recommended to take legal action. One of the most notable situations is if you were entirely at fault for the incident.
Negotiate Higher Settlements
Working with car accident attorneys goes a long way toward getting the highest settlement. In many cases, a car accident law firm will prioritize settling out of court to save time without sacrificing results. However, the best car accident attorney will always be ready to go to trial.
Typical car accident settlement amounts will vary depending on several factors. For example, a victim who was partially at fault for the collision will likely receive a lower settlement.
Prevent Damage to Your Case
It's not uncommon for people to substantially damage their cases before they move forward. Let's assume someone was involved in a car accident and claims they have mobility issues due to their injuries.
Posting pictures on social media could derail their case. In this scenario, imagine the victim posting a photo of themselves at a family member's birthday party.
They appear happy and seem to have no trouble standing despite being on painkillers and having constant discomfort. The other party could argue they're well enough to get around on their own and are faking their injuries. You'll want to avoid situations like these at all costs.
Finding a Car Accident Lawyer
Not all lawyers are created equal, and it'll take a bit of research to find the best one for your situation. Understanding what to look for can help you simplify this process. Let's explore the key attributes to consider.
Area of Law
Never hire an attorney who doesn't focus on car accident law. They should have years of experience in handling cases like yours.
Stay wary of attorneys who don't focus on car accidents but claim they can still help with your situation. While they might meet your needs, chances are they'll fall short of your goals.
What do other clients have to say about working with your prospective attorney? Were they satisfied with the results they got? Looking into information like this can help you narrow down your search.
Never choose a lawyer that doesn't have a substantial amount of positive feedback. You should also keep an eye out for fake reviews.
These are typically posted in batches and have similar formatting. With a bit of due diligence, you'll find the best car accident attorney for your situation.
Cost and Billing
Understand how much you'll pay so you can avoid financial surprises. If they aren't transparent about their pricing, look elsewhere.
You should also ask about their billing structure. Some attorneys charge by the hour, while others charge a flat fee. In other situations, your attorney could charge on a contingency basis.
This means they'll take their compensation out of the money you're awarded. You don't have to pay anything upfront, and you won't have to pay at all if you don't win your case.
Those looking for the "best car accident lawyer near me" should prioritize attorneys who are easy to get in touch with. Getting left in the dark while your case is ongoing can be highly stressful. Prioritize attorneys that maintain high levels of availability.
The best car accident lawyer is someone you have an easy time communicating with, so don't overlook this attribute. Ask how they plan on staying in touch with you and when you can expect to hear from them.
You should also establish when it's appropriate for you to contact them. Keep in mind doing so after hours could come with additional fees.
Take Action ASAP
To get the best outcome, you'll need to hire a car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Not only does this give you the best chance of success, but it also ensures you don't damage your case. Just be sure to do your research before making a decision.
Daniels Law prides itself on having reached a large number of multi-million dollar settlements for our clients. We strive to deliver affordable, comprehensive legal services without sacrificing quality. We can discuss more about how we'll handle your case when you book a free consultation.