Car accidents happen every day across the U.S. Every 60 seconds, at least one traffic-related accident occurs. After a car accident, victims are often left to face serious injuries and rising medical bills.
To make matters worse, the majority of insurance companies do not have your best interests in mind. In fact, some of them lowball the victims and manipulate them into thinking that the value of their case is worth way less than it is.
Although you can legally represent yourself in a car accident claim, handling it on your own may be quite difficult.
Some situations in which you don’t need a lawyer to represent you are:
- If your injury was minor pain and discomfort such as mild whiplash, and
- Your injury did not require a specialist doctor or expensive tests, and
- You have completely recovered from your injury after a few hospital visits
Although having a minor injury does not necessarily require you to seek representation from a lawyer, it’s still worth asking for legal advice from them. After all, some lawyers offer free initial consultations for their clients, and they might also take advantage of it!
Another thing you need to worry about is the statute of limitations in your area. If you are from Los Angeles, then you have only two years to file a car accident claim. If you don’t immediately seek the assistance of an experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyer, then you may suffer significant financial losses.
So when exactly do you need to hire a car accident lawyer?
1. If you were seriously injured or if the accident resulted in death
For minor injuries, it may be less difficult to handle the case on your own as you don’t need too much time to recover from your wounds. However, for serious injuries, it may take an extended period of time before you’re completely healed. Sometimes, it would even cost people their jobs as they cannot work due to their injuries.
Accidents involving serious injuries and death are also more complicated. Victims would have to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver to recoup the cost of the medical treatment for their injuries.
Another important thing to remember is that you should never represent yourself in a serious car accident lawsuit. You are putting yourself at risk of losing if you ever decide to. It’s better to have a car accident lawyer by your side to serve as your legal guide in these types of cases.
2. Multiple parties are involved in the accident.
If you think a car accident involving two parties is already complicated enough, then a car accident involving multiple parties is more tedious to deal with. It’s possible that multiple lawsuits may be filed in case multiple parties are involved.
Negotiations and insurance claim settlements are also trickier with accidents involving multiple parties. You would have to pinpoint the liability in the accident and do that, and you need solid evidence to prove your claim.
An experienced car accident lawyer will vigorously fight for your rights, so you won’t need to stress about the process.
3. An uninsured party was involved in the crash.
Although the majority of people have insurance nowadays, there are still some that refuse to get it. If the other party involved in the collision does not have insurance, consult a car accident lawyer immediately. If the other party drove without insurance, there is a chance that they may be unable to compensate you fully for the accident.
4. You were temporarily disabled due to the accident.
For those unfortunate enough, some victims of car accidents become temporarily disabled due to the severity of their injuries. There are also instances where if the injury is left untreated, they turn into permanent injuries, affecting the victim’s way of living. This can cause the victims to lose their jobs which means they will also lose their source of income.
Whether you’re temporarily or permanently disabled, you must talk to an attorney immediately. They can maximize the value of your claim and help you in receiving the compensation that you rightfully deserve.
If you are experiencing any of the mentioned situations, you should look for an experienced attorney immediately. The clock is ticking, and you don’t want to risk losing your claim because you weren’t able to follow the statute of limitations.
When meeting with a car accident lawyer, make sure to prepare the following:
- Contact information
- Key facts about your case
- Police report
- Medical records
- Financial documents or medical receipts
- Photos of accident scene or damage
- Witness contact information and statements
Another important thing to note is that you must avoid talking with your insurance adjuster before getting an attorney. The insurance company may try to manipulate you into settling for less, but your attorney will protect you from manipulation and help you in getting just compensation.