December 3, 2019 Category: Personal Injury
Being involved in a serious accident can leave you with many uncertainties. If someone else is responsible for your injuries, you may be wondering how to hold them accountable. In these situations, a personal injury lawsuit can help compensate you for your medical bills, lost wages, and even pain and suffering.
Having a qualified attorney on your side to help with these matters is critical. The lawyer can evaluate your case objectively and determine whether or not you have grounds to sue. In addition, there are important deadlines to keep in mind that can affect your case. For example, with most personal injury lawsuits, you have two years from the date of your injury to file the claim.
It’s best not to delay contacting an attorney. Even if you are not at risk for running out of time, there are risks involved in attempting to communicate with the person responsible for your injuries or their insurance company on your own. An attorney can help you negotiate with these individuals and businesses to get the settlement you deserve or take your case to trial, if necessary.
When You’re Dealing With Insurance Companies
One of the most common ways that insurance companies get involved in personal injury matters is following a car accident. In these situations – or other scenarios where an insurer decides to step in – you may be contacted by a company representative about settling the claim.
It’s important to note that the insurance company does not have your best interests in mind. They are interested in settling the case for the lowest dollar amount and resolving the matter as quickly as possible. By contrast, an attorney is hired to represent your interests exclusively.
It’s always best to contact an attorney before talking to an insurance company. If you accept a settlement offer, you may be bound to that agreement. Personal injury attorneys know how to work with tough negotiators and can help you get the money you deserve.
When Your Injuries Are Serious
Now, when your accident only involves minor injuries, you may be eager to accept a settlement and move on with your life. But, even small accidents can lead to serious medical issues. You may develop long-term problems that require physical therapy, rehabilitation, or chiropractic care.
While you are recovering, you may also miss work. Wages lost during this period could be part of the compensation you receive, as well as amounts for any of your property that was damaged or pain and suffering you endured.
Note that payments for pain and suffering are not easily reduced to exact dollar amounts. These numbers are often arrived at through negotiations, so it’s important to have an attorney that understands the money you are entitled to in a personal injury case.
In addition, sometimes an accident results in the death of a loved one. If this occurs, you may have grounds for a wrongful death action. Bear in mind that the calculation for damages in these types of cases can get complicated. For that reason, you will want an attorney that is familiar with wrongful death suits.
Compensation paid to a victim’s family typically includes amounts that represent wages the deceased person would have earned in his or her lifetime. These damages would also likely include burial and funeral expenses, the value of any contributions the person made to the household, as well as any intangible factors that were lost, such as companionship, affection, and moral support.
When Your Case Gets Complicated
Now, there are many situations that can cause a lawsuit to become complex. Examples would be if there were multiple drivers involved in the accident, or if the person responsible was working at the time. In these situations, there may be several potential defendants and insurance companies to work with.
It may also be the case that you were partially at fault for the accident. Keep in mind that this does not necessarily bar your claim, but it can reduce the amount you are entitled to receive.
Cases such as these can be extremely difficult for a nonlawyer to navigate. The lawsuits require expert knowledge on how to strategize, investigate, and make sense of all of the facts and the law. These cases may also be more likely to go to trial, which requires a thorough understanding of court rules and procedures.
For these reasons, it is worth hiring a personal injury attorney to help you put together a strong case and place you in the best position to obtain a favorable outcome.