More than 38,000 Americans died in car accidents last year.
Though this number has slightly declined from years past, the dangers out on the roads remain very real. Even the safest drivers can be killed or seriously injured due to someone else’s negligence.
As the victim of an accident, it is a scary time. There is already the emotional and physical trauma to deal with, let alone the financial burdens caused by someone else’s mistake.
This is why it is important to consult with a personal injury lawyer after an accident where you were not at fault. They can review your case and determine if the other party is liable for financial compensation.
This way, you can ease the burden a bit and work on getting back to your life.
For more information on when hiring a personal injury attorney is warranted, keep reading.
What is a Personal Injury?
The exact personal injury laws will vary by state.
But generally speaking, personal injury cases refer to legal disputes where one party suffers harm that has been caused or exacerbated from an accident where a second party may legally be at fault.
There is no technical list of what classifies as personal injury. Rather, it could be any injury sustained in an accident.
Some common personal injury claim examples are:
- Medical malpractice
- Slip and fall accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Product defects/liability
- Dog bites
And of course, the most common personal injury claims in America are motor vehicle accidents.
After an accident that causes injury, the bills can quickly stack up. These costs include:
- Medical bills
- Property damage
- Lost wages from work
It can be especially frustrating when the accident was no fault of your own. But on the bright side, there are options to seek restitution for these damages. Filing a personal injury claim is one of the best options to recoup these losses.
First Things First
While there may be a rush of thoughts and feelings following an accident, it’s important to keep priorities in order.
After suffering an accident of any kind, it is of the utmost importance to make sure you are okay. Go to the hospital, see a doctor, and follow through with any recommendations they have.
This includes attending follow-up appointments, finishing all prescriptions, and attending physical therapy sessions. This way, no argument can be made that you exacerbated the injury with your own actions (or inactions).
After the initial phase of trauma medicine, a personal injury attorney can help you identify the best physicians to maximize your claim potential. Not only can these medical professionals get you back to proper health as soon as possible, but they can also serve as witnesses in your case.
They can testify to the cause and severity of your injuries, and how it has impacted your quality of life.
When to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer
Technically, you can represent yourself in these cases under the law.
However, this may not be the most effective way to ensure proper compensation for your pain and suffering. The legal system can be confusing for the layperson to understand. Plus, you may not be in the best frame of mind after suffering a serious injury.
According to Cardiff Solicitors without proper knowledge and experience in the ins-and-outs of these cases, the opposing side may take advantage of you. Keep in mind that when suing insurance companies, they have access to large amounts of money and resources.
With so much to lose, the other side will have qualified attorneys representing their interests who are experienced in this area of law. They are skilled in exposing flaws in your case that would make a personal injury award less likely.
Going up against these figures can be intimidating and may result in unintended consequences. As such, you could lose the case or come out with a smaller award. This is why hiring a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible is key.
Plus, with a personal injury lawsuit, you can often hire a personal injury attorney on a contingency basis. This means they do not receive any compensation from you unless they win the case.
For accidents with substantial damage, it’s really a no-brainer.
While there is not always an official timeline, you must follow in personal injury claim cases, the sooner you move, the better. This is especially true in cases with serious damage. The more time you go without consulting an attorney, the more complicated the process can become.
In some states, there are laws governing the timeline of a personal injury claim. This is common with medical malpractice cases, for example.
Selecting the Best Personal Injury Attorney
A personal injury claim lawyer with a good reputation will be a game-changer in these cases. With their legal expertise, reputation, and knowledge of local judges and courtroom staff, they can fight for your rights.
Be sure to choose an attorney that is knowledgeable in this area of law. Furthermore, personal injury laws vary by state. Your personal injury lawyer should have a solid grasp of the state-specific laws that will apply to your case.
Vetting multiple law firms is a great way to compare your options and decide who could best represent your interests. Schedule a consultation with various firms, and read their reviews from past clients. You should feel comfortable with your choice of personal injury lawyer, as it can make or break your case.
The period after an accident can be stressful enough. Bills may be piling up, injuries may be painful, and property may be damaged. It’s important to carefully weigh your options and consider hiring a personal injury lawyer to best protect your rights.
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