Why Should I Hire a Lawyer After a Minor Car Accident?
If you are reading this, someone may have rear-ended your vehicle, and there was not a lot of visible damage.
To you, it felt like a minor accident.
You did not seem seriously injured, so you exchanged contact and insurance information with the other driver.
You thought it would be no problem to call the police or have an attorney involved. But in the end, you decided to try and handle the insurance claim yourself.
You may not realize that, even though this was a minor car accident, the collision could have long-term effects.
The adrenaline from a crash, even a minor one, can mask immediate pain and injuries.
Apprehension of how the other guy will react to the car accident can distract you from your injuries.
Are they emotional and angry? Are you?
The fight or flight response can kick in, so it is essential to take a minute to calm down and assess the situation.
Emotions After a Car Accident
It is vital to keep your emotions in check after a car accident.
Many victims of car accidents undergo immense stress and anxiety following their accident but don’t want to appear faint-hearted, especially if the accident was minor.
You do not want to say something that could hurt your claim later, so here is an excellent tip: “Do not admit fault or reveal policy limits.”
That’s a direct quote from the Geico insurance website.
It is very important to be mindful of what you do and say!
Some minor car accident injuries are more serious than you think!
It is possible that these injuries do not present themselves until days or weeks after the accident.
If you wait too long to seek medical attention or treatment, the insurance company may try to say that your injuries are not related to the accident.
This would leave you responsible for all of your medical bills.
The Police Report and Failing to Report to Police
In most states, failing to file a police report after a car accident is illegal, even if it’s just a fender bender.
You can get in trouble if you get in your car and drive away after an accident. It doesn’t matter if you don’t think you were injured or if the other cars didn’t have any damage.
It becomes a citable offense when you get in your car and drive away.
An accident is still an accident, even if it’s only a minor car accident.
Most police departments or State DOTs charge a fee to get a copy of your police report.
Make sure you get a copy of the report, or if you hire an injury lawyer, they will get one on your behalf.
6 Reasons to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer After A Minor Accident
- Responsibility: You’ll need assistance determining who is responsible for compensation to make an insurance claim. Sometimes, who is primarily liable for the accident might be unclear, and both parties may point fingers at each other without a resolution in sight. A car accident lawyer will assist you in determining which party or entity is responsible for any injuries incurred due to the collision.
- Denied Insurance Claims: Insurance companies place a premium on increasing their profit from their clients’ premiums and giving them the lowest level of coverage in return. This implies denying claims without sufficient evidence or strength to back them up in many situations. Obtaining assistance from a car accident attorney while submitting an insurance claim is critical.
- Approved Low Coverage Claims: The insurance company will try to offer you the lowest amount of money possible for your claim. Most people just accept this amount without talking to a lawyer. A car accident lawyer can speak with the insurance company on your behalf and ensure you get the most money possible to cover your damages.
- Missed or Minor Injuries Become Greater Over Time: What seems to be no big problem initially can be life-altering and require expensive medical care. Whiplash and Back injuries are the most common delayed injuries that car accident victims suffer for years. A car crash lawyer can help you recover financial compensation for all the losses that you have already suffered and will continue to suffer down the road.
- Time is Not On Your Side: The Statute of limitations begins at the moment of the accident. You have a certain amount of time to bring a claim; if you fail to bring that claim in time, you will receive no compensation for your injuries.
- You could be served with a lawsuit by the other party who was involved in the vehicle accident. If this happens, you’ll need legal representation as soon as possible to safeguard yourself and your rights.
How to settle a car accident claim without a lawyer?
Here is how you settle a car accident claim without a lawyer
- Evaluate the extent of your damages
- Speak to the insurance adjuster
- Craft your demand letter
- Do your due diligence before going to court
- Await the judge’s verdict and accept the settlement
The other driver’s insurance company may also give you a lowball offer for your property damage claim.
They may also try to get you to give a recorded statement, where you could accidentally say something that hurts your case.
An experienced car accident lawyer will know how to deal with the insurance company to get you the best possible settlement.
Understand that representing yourself isn’t always the best
It is feasible to handle a vehicle accident claim without the assistance of an attorney.
However, this isn’t a wise option. Lawyers have years of expertise in assisting clients in obtaining their due compensation.
They can also assist you in expediting the settlement process so you may get your money quicker.
If you do end up having to go to court, they will be able to defend your interests against the insurance company’s seasoned legal team.
Accident Lawyers Get The Clients 3 Times More Money Than Doing It Yourself
Although you may believe that a little vehicle accident does not necessitate the services of a car accident lawyer, we can assure you that those who utilize experienced attorneys obtain settlements on average 3X higher than those who do not.
Average Settlement was worth $60,000 more after hiring an accident lawyer.
With Lawyer: $77,600
Without a Lawyer: $17,600
CAR ACCIDENT LAWYERS ARE FREE! Unless You Win
The fact is that every lawyer will cost you, but almost every personal injury attorney accepts a contingency fee.
This means they get paid out of the compensation they obtain for you.
So if they don’t settle for you, you don’t owe them anything!
Even better, most will speak with you for free during a case evaluation.
You can schedule an appointment, meet with a skilled car accident lawyer about any settlement proposals you’ve been given, and find out your rights under current state law.
When hiring an accident attorney, the cost should not be a factor in your decision.
It also means that you should contact a car accident lawyer after your accident. You have nothing to lose and much to gain by speaking with one.
Should I call a lawyer after a car accident?
Overall, it is always a good idea to consult with an attorney after any car accident, even if it seems minor. A lawyer can help you protect your rights and ensure that you are fairly compensated for your injuries and damages.
When is it too late to get a lawyer for a car accident?
Many people try to go it alone regarding what they consider minor car accidents, only to discover it’s more complicated than they realize.
The smart ones will ask an accident lawyer, “is it too late to hire an attorney?”
In many cases, the answer is no, it’s not too late to hire an attorney unless the statute of limitations has expired on your case.
How long does a car accident settlement take with a lawyer?
Lawyers.com says the average time before settlement without a lawyer was 7 months.
With a lawyer, the length of time for settlement went up to 15 months, but the victim was awarded, on average, an extra $60,000 for the settlement.
What are 8 Things Not To Do After A Car Accident
- Leaving the Scene of An Accident Without Reporting It To the Police: It’s a severe blunder to leave the scene of an accident without informing the cops. In a minor vehicle accident lawsuit, the Police report will be utilized to assist the judge in determining fair compensation for the victim.
- Failing To Gather Evidence At the Scene: Take as many photographs as possible, get as many phone numbers as possible, and collect as many account numbers from individuals near your accident. Let your accident lawyer do their work by sifting through your evidence collection.
- Admitting Fault: Don’t admit culpability when you’re involved in a minor vehicle collision. You have no option but to believe that you are not at fault for the incident because you could never possibly know who is at fault from your perspective. Never admit guilt. Allow your lawyer and the cops to determine who may be responsible and how much relative blame there is.
- Not Seeing a Doctor: You should visit a doctor as soon as you believe you have been hurt in your accident. If you don’t, and you acquire injuries from the minor vehicle collision, it may be more challenging to link them to the accident and not some other wear and tear.
- Failing to Understand Insurance Companies: Remember that insurance companies are, first and foremost, business that exists to make money. So when you make claims, they will try to settle for less if they can.
- Not Reviewing the Police Report: Review the police report carefully. Make sure that the facts in it are correct. If you don’t agree with something, speak up right then and there. Get any changes made as soon as possible. Don’t sign until everything is correct.
- Taking the First Settlement Check Offered: The insurance company usually starts with a low offer to save money. They want to ensure they don’t pay too much, but they also want to ensure you are satisfied.
- Not Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer: For all the above reasons and more, we believe it’s in your best interests to hire a car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
What Are The No-Fault States? What Does That Mean After A Minor Accident?
What does a no-fault state mean? Drivers have insurance to cover their injuries and damage rather than insuring to pay out to the other person.
No-fault insurance means that everyone must file a claim with their insurance company, regardless of who caused the accident. This type of insurance is common in states where drivers must have personal injury protection coverage as part of their auto insurance policy.
The rules surrounding auto accident lawsuits in no-fault auto states are strict. These rules are known as threshold conditions and relate to the severity of the injury sustained in the auto accident.
Why Should I Hire a Personal Injury Attorney in a No-Fault State?
Because of the large number of plaintiffs, many states have modified their laws to simplify the procedure for innocent parties. This frequently allows a victim who was not at fault to be released from the duty of proving that the other driver was at fault before receiving compensation.
This part of the no-fault insurance policy is called personal injury protection.
Because it provides a limited right to file a lawsuit, this sort of coverage is frequently misinterpreted despite widespread belief to the contrary.
Individuals may be able to sue for non-economic damages.
However, states that accept no-fault insurance have different requirements for the lowest compensation required to file a claim.
Some states express the threshold as a certain monetary figure, such as $250,000.
Others express it in terms of the severity of physical injuries. Additionally, no-fault insurance policies deal with medical expenses. The claim’s property damage component works the same way as it does in at-fault states.
However, the process does not involve litigation in many no-fault insurance claims.
Under no-fault state law, each accident victim is compensated for their medical expenditures and lost earnings. The insured person in some states must utilize his or her medical insurance coverage first, and the automobile insurance pays the rest.
In some no-fault states, accident victims must cooperate with their insurance companies. An accident victim may be compelled to provide a recorded statement to the insurance company or to go through a medical examination chosen by the insurer. The insurer might have cause to terminate no-fault benefits if the accident victim does not cooperate.
An Accident Attorney Helps You Craft a Complete Case
Personal injury cases can be long, complex, and tricky, from evidence collection to negotiations.
You’re probably already stressed out after an accident, and the last thing you should do is take on a personal injury claim on your own.
Your attorney will work with you to collect all the proper evidence, catalog and organize this evidence, and present it to the insurance adjuster to prove the settlement amount you need.
Your car accident lawyer will also tell you that your actions are not jeopardizing your case.
Insurance adjusters are experts at what they do, and their priority is to protect the insurance company’s financial interests.
For this reason, they may try to contact you, they may try to keep tabs on your social media usage, and they may try to find any reason or way to limit your right to a settlement.
Your personal injury attorney will keep you and your case safe.
The United States has 12 no-fault states, including Florida, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, North Dakota and Utah.
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