Car Accident Lawyer
A car crash is a traumatic event, and whether you and your car leave the accident barely harmed or suffer serious injuries, it’s your legal right to seek compensation from the negligent party. Sometimes, seeking compensation from the other party is an extensive process that may even require help from an attorney. However, the other person’s insurance company may often try to settle the case before it reaches court. While this sounds like good news, there are some considerations before accepting their settlement offer.
Why Do Insurance Companies Try to Settle?
While some personal injury cases like car accidents do make it to court, the truth is that the vast majority get settled outside the courtroom before that happens. While there can be several reasons for this, it takes a lot of time, energy, effort, and resources to take a case to court. Additionally, having a trial is very risky, and there’s always room for uncertainty. Therefore, many insurance companies may try to settle before the case reaches court and even before a victim starts seeking legal help.
Why Is it Better to Consult a Lawyer Before Accepting?
Especially when dealing with high costs like medical expenses or repairing your vehicle, it can be tempting to accept the first settlement you receive. However, consulting with your lawyer is often the better choice. The truth is that many insurance companies low-ball a victim by offering a settlement that doesn’t cover all their immediate and future needs. Even when a payment sounds attractive on paper, it may not begin to cover everything you need. While most people know that a settlement may cover medical and property damage expenses, there are plenty of other damages a settlement should cover, including:
- Lost wages or job rehabilitation
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Legal fees
- Pain and suffering
- Compensating for physical therapy
- Temporary or permanent disfigurements
- Emotional distress, including the development of disorders like PTSD
How Can a Lawyer Help?
A lawyer can help by ensuring you receive a more accurate settlement covering all your immediate and future expenses. Often, an insurance company will be unwilling to revise its initial offer or even outright refuse to talk with a victim. Instead, they will use techniques like being unavailable, unwilling to negotiate, or outright refusing to talk.
Having a lawyer on your side, however, can calm troubled waters. The right lawyer will negotiate with the opposing insurance company and apply legal pressure when necessary. The right lawyer will also help you decide when you should take a settlement.
However, many people are hesitant to hire a lawyer simply due to the cost. However, an attorney works off a contingency fee for many personal injury cases like car accidents. This means that instead of paying your lawyer hourly or on a retainer basis, your lawyer gets a percentage of the final settlement, and you won’t have to pay any upfront costs.