Archives September 2021

Working with a Car Accident Lawyer

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If a car accident was relatively minor, resulting in only property damage and minimal injuries, you may be able to handle the resulting insurance claim on your own. However, if you are suffering from catastrophic injuries after a serious accident, you may have a lot at stake in terms of medical bills, lost income, and other damages. The insurance company also may put more resources into contesting all or part of the claim. In these situations, or in situations in which liability is unclear, you may benefit greatly from hiring a car accident lawyer.

Attorneys who handle car accident cases and other personal injury cases usually work on a contingency fee basis. This means that they will take their fee from any eventual settlement or judgment that you receive, usually in a percentage around 30-33%. If they do not get money for you, you usually do not need to pay the attorney anything. There are certain other costs associated with filing a claim, however, and you will want to determine who will cover those costs when you retain an attorney.

How an Attorney Can Help

One of the main tasks that your attorney can handle for you is communicating with insurance companies and adverse parties in your case. This can help take the stress out of the process and make sure that an insurance adjuster does not take advantage of you. Negotiating a settlement in a car accident case is a complex and often hard-fought process, but an attorney may understand better than the victim how much the case is worth and how to get the insurer to pay out. Also, complexities can arise in some claims involving lien holders. These are other insurers that provided benefits to an accident victim before the auto insurer provides them, which gives these insurers a lien on the claim. An attorney can help you try to reduce the lien so that you retain as much of the settlement or judgment as possible.

Another key area in which an attorney can help is gathering evidence to support your claim. You will need to collect evidence regarding both liability (who caused the accident) and damages (your losses from the accident). An attorney can retain experts to investigate the accident, and they can discuss the events with police officers and witnesses. They can also help obtain evidence from medical providers to establish the scope and extent of your injuries. In some cases, an attorney might retain medical experts to explain the effect of your injuries.

Choosing a Car Accident Lawyer

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When you are looking for an attorney, you should make sure to choose someone who relates well to you. They also should have experience handling cases similar to yours. Trial experience can be an important asset, since insurers may take a claim more seriously if they know that a victim’s attorney is willing to go to trial. You may also want to make sure that your attorney actually will be handling your case, rather than passing the work to paralegals or other assistants.

You can read more here about the process of finding and working with a personal injury lawyer.

Getting a Case Evaluation

How Do I Decide When to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer? | Whisler Law Firm

In your initial meeting with the attorney or their assistant, you will describe the facts of the accident and your injuries. The attorney or assistant may ask about certain key issues before deciding whether to take the case, such as your insurance coverage and any previous communications with insurance adjusters and others about the accident. The attorney may ask you to bring certain documents to the meeting so that they can better understand your case. These may include medical bills, the police report of the accident, and correspondence with insurers, among other things. You should be aware that the attorney-client privilege will protect the contents of this conversation, so you should be as candid with the attorney as possible. This will help both sides determine the value of your case and whether it makes sense to move forward together.

Where to look to find good car accident attorneys and what to ask

So you’ve been involved in a car accident and think you may have a case. How do you find the right attorney to help you?

You already know this is an important decision. In fact, finding the right lawyer from a good shortlist of car accident attorneys may be one of the most important decisions of your entire car accident case.

We’re going to help you with that right now.

You should do careful research and select an attorney who has years of proven experience handling personal injury cases such as yours. We want to offer you some helpful tips to find that perfect attorney to get you compensated for your car accident injuries.

Top reasons why you need a personal injury attorney after your auto accident

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When should you hire a personal injury attorney after a car crash, and why? What does a lawyer do for you? Do you need a lawyer for a minor car accident? We asked attorneys from all over the country these questions and here’s what they said.

Research shows that car accident victims, particularly those with perceived “minor” injuries, are reluctant to hire a personal injury attorney for a number of reasons. Perhaps they don’t think they need one, they are intimidated by the prospect of talking to a lawyer, or they don’t want to get dragged into court like they see on TV shows. Or maybe they mistakenly believe that they could never afford to hire an attorney or that their injuries aren’t that serious.

Whatever the reason, the reality is that not hiring an attorney after a car accident can have long-term negative consequences on your final settlement or award.

While it’s hard to quantify exactly how much it helps to hire an attorney since there isn’t recent data looking into this issue and cases vary widely, one commonly cited study by the Insurance Research Council from 2004 found that 85 percent of cases where the insurance company settled a car accident claim were handled by a hired attorney.In addition, auto accident injury victims who are represented by an attorney are awarded 3.5 times more compensation in settlements than those accident victims who represent themselves, according to the same study.

In this article, Enjuris developed a comprehensive list of tips and advice from reputable attorneys around the country about the benefits of hiring an attorney following a crash. Our goal is to help accident victims understand the settlement difference that having a great attorney on their side can make by providing answers to related questions like:

  • What are the top reasons why people should hire an attorney?
  • What advantages do personal injury attorneys offer in car accident cases?
  • When should you hire a personal injury attorney after a car crash?
  • Do you need a lawyer for a minor car accident?

Below you’ll find answers to these questions and more from experienced car accident attorneys based in cities all across the country, from Miami to New York to Houston to Denver.

Before you look up car accident attorneys, know what you’re looking for

How Can I Change My Car Accident Lawyer? | Purchase

Before you even start doing searches it will pay off to have a good idea of the qualities and terms you are looking for in a car accident attorney. This may differ a little according to your case, your personality, your area of the country, even.

These questions will give you a framework for a list you can check off:

  • Evaluate the complete team of staff, not just the partners or people who make up the public face of the law firm. Keep in mind as you research and interact with the firm that it may not be the same person you speak with initially who will be your primary contact.
  • Firm age, size, experience. Awards and leadership roles in organizations can also be good indicators.
  • Good judicial connections: Find out if they participate in the local bar association and contribute to campaigns.
  • Comfort with going to trial: Find out how many of their cases go to trial and the success rate of those that do. Some lawyers will have this information posted on their websites.
  • Have they tried or settled similar cases in your city or county? Do they have an office near you?
  • Look for experience with your type of case specifically.
  • Negotiation ability: What sort of settlements they have obtained (remember, 95% of personal injury cases are settled without trial). Again, some car accident attorneys will have this information posted on their websites.
  • Your personal comfort with the lawyer. This can be a big one.
  • Timing: Are they too busy to devote enough time to your case? Can you get a sense of how long their cases are taking?
  • Past problems: Has the attorney ever been censured or disciplined by any legal or ethics committees in the past? You will want to look this up before contacting them, so you don’t waste your time.
  • Past client reviews: Be alert to what others say about them, especially on independent review sites.