If you’ve been in an accident and you’re not sure if you need legal assistance, you’re not alone. Personal injury is a pretty wide legal net which makes it a little confusing to navigate. From fender benders to slip and fall accidents on someone else’s property, these cases take many shapes and forms. If you’ve recently been in an accident where another party is at fault, here’s when you should consider hiring a personal injury lawyer.
If you’re injured, you might assume that you automatically need legal assistance. However, not all injuries merit legal action. Minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises frequently don’t necessitate the intervention of legal counsel. Regardless of how you feel after an accident, even if you feel fine, seek medical attention. Many injuries aren’t readily apparent and some, such as severe whiplash, often don’t come with physical signs.
Now, if your accident requires hospitalization, physical therapy, surgery, or any other serious medical intervention, hiring a personal injury lawyer might be in your best interest. With the right legal representation, claims involving significant past, present, and future medical bills skyrocket in value. Often, this hits the ceiling of the offending party’s insurance policy limits.
If this happens, their insurance company may only pay you a fraction of the compensation you’re owed. Your lawyer will document every aspect of your care including billing statements, health records, and your doctor’s assessments of your condition. This helps ensure that you receive the total amount you’re owed.
Multiple Parties and Unclear Liability
Knowing what steps to take in a personal injury case is complicated enough when they only involve two parties. When more people are involved, things get a little more confusing. When the liability of your accident falls on multiple outside parties, your chances of filing a successful claim on your own significantly decrease. These cases are prime examples of when you need to contact a personal injury lawyer.
If several people are injured in the accident, the amount of settlement money available is usually less than in a two-party accident. Not only is a personal injury lawyer your key to receiving the compensation you deserve, they’re also your best defense against counterclaims from other people involved in the injury. If another person injured in the accident files an insurance claim against you, it dramatically weakens the strength of your case, especially if you’re filing on your own.
Refusal to Pay
One thing to keep in mind throughout the personal injury claims process is that while the other party’s insurance agency works with you to achieve a settlement, they’re not working for you, nor are they on your side. At the end of the day, their ultimate goal is to pay you as little as they possibly can while still satisfying the conditions of your claim. Though it’s uncommon, there are scenarios in which an insurance company makes an unfair settlement offer or flat-out refuses to pay.
If an insurance company refuses to pay you, don’t sit on this information and don’t try to settle it on your own. Insurance companies have numerous tactics to stall out the settlement process in the hopes that you’ll eventually give up. Instead, contact a qualified attorney and file a lawsuit as soon as possible. The quicker you act, the more likely you are to see a fair resolution to your case.
Time to Take Action
If any of the above scenarios apply to you, it’s time to get in touch with a personal injury attorney. Choosing the right lawyer is an incredibly important decision. Find someone with a proven track record of success who specializes in personal injury. Your lawyer represents you and your interests so you should be comfortable with them, as well. With the right legal representation on your team, you’re well on your way to receiving the compensation you deserve.