After an accident, hiring a lawyer is not always necessary. Personal injury claims can be filed against insurance companies without legal representation. In cases of mild injuries, many individuals opt to take the time to research and navigate the legal claims process without the aid of a professional. A lawyer can assist these individuals by protecting and preserving their legal right to recover compensation.
However, there are times when individuals should consider hiring an auto accident lawyer. When facing a large auto insurance company, it is best to have an attorney who knows the laws and procedures of the system. This is especially true for individuals who have suffered severe injuries, are faced with expensive medical bills, or have experienced a significant loss of wages due to their injuries.
Severe injuries are measured by the type of injury (or injuries) sustained, the length of time it takes (or will take) to recover, and the cost of medical bills and therapeutic procedures incurred. Since the amount of compensation is such a large sum, it is prudent to allow a professional who is more familiar with the proceedings to handle the case.
Long-term or permanently disabling injuries are injuries that last for at least a year or disables an individual for life. These injuries seriously affect a person’s ability to become and stay employed, as well as the quality of life the individual can live. Legal representation can help prove that a long-term or permanent disability exists and that there is an entitlement to compensation.
In the event of death, a lawyer can represent the deceased’s family in a wrongful death claim on the deceased’s behalf.
According to dmv.org, some insurance companies will dispute a policyholder’s liability for the car crash, saying that the policyholder is not at fault or cannot be proved to be at fault, and therefore is not responsible for paying damages. When this happens, it is best to have a lawyer to take on the insurance company and gather the necessary information to prove the case.
A car accident lawyer will thoroughly investigate and document the accident to prove who was at fault for sustained injuries or damages. This is done by accessing the police report, gathering other documentation of the accident interviewing witnesses, collecting medical records, and interviewing emergency responders or medical professionals.
If the lawyer can demonstrate that the at-fault party’s negligence caused the accident, then there is a great chance of receiving compensating for both economic and noneconomic damages.
Additionally, a lawyer can help protect individuals from actions the at-fault party’s insurance company may take to minimize their financial responsibility. This could include offering an undervalued settlement in exchange for a liability waiver or requesting a recorded statement that the adverse insurer hopes to use to support a denial of the claim.
In some cases, insurance companies will refuse to pay, or refuse to pay a fair amount. This is considered “refusal to pay” and will require legal action in order to continue a pursuit of payment.