After a traffic accident, many people wonder whether they need legal representation. Is it worth it? How can an attorney help?
As the legal team at Winters & Yonker Personal Injury Lawyers explains, there are numerous benefits to an attorney-client relationship. Read on to learn what a car accident lawyer will actually do for you.
Provide a Free Consultation To Review Your Case and Explain Your Legal Rights
The good news is that most car accident attorneys offer a free case assessment. During your consultation, you can discuss what happened with a knowledgeable lawyer. They’ll evaluate the validity of your claim and whether they think you need representation.
Usually, an attorney won’t take a case unless it makes sense to do so. Why? Personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. That means you don’t owe any attorney’s fees upfront – and you only pay if your claim is successful.
Accordingly, a car accident lawyer typically won’t accept a weak case or one that may not be worth pursuing. Therefore, if they recommend that you hire them, they’re confident that they can win compensation for you and that it makes sense from a business standpoint.
Investigate the Car Accident and Gather Evidence Proving Your Case
Sometimes, liability for an auto accident is clear. Perhaps a driver ran a red light or rear-ended your vehicle when they were distracted. However, in other cases, it may not be readily apparent who was responsible for the collision. Or, multiple parties may share accountability.
Your lawyer will handle any complex issues as to liability by thoroughly investigating the traffic crash.
The evidence they may gather could include:
- The police report
- Footage from nearby surveillance or traffic cameras
- Statements from eyewitnesses
- An accident reconstruction report and other expert witness opinions
- Your medical records
- Photos and videos of vehicle damage and road conditions
It can be difficult to collect this information without an attorney’s assistance – especially if you’re struggling with any injuries.
Accurately Assess Your Economic and Non-Economic Damages
A common mistake car accident victims make is negotiating with an insurance company before understanding their damages. If you suffer long-term impairments, psychological trauma, chronic pain, and other losses, you need to fully comprehend them before attempting to settle your case. Otherwise, you may walk away with less money than you need and deserve under state law.
Damages that may be available to car accident victims include:
- Medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Physical therapy
- Reasonable out-of-pocket costs
- Lost wages
- Reduced earning capacity
- Property damage
- Diminished quality of life
- Permanent scarring
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
These economic and non-economic damages could include past and future losses and needs. For example, if your doctor thinks your injury is permanent, you deserve compensation for your ongoing medical treatment and rehab.
Your personal injury attorney can advise you regarding what your car accident claim might be worth. That way, you don’t leave money on the table at the conclusion of your case.
Negotiate With Aggressive Adjusters on Your Behalf
Did you know that adjusters and other insurance professionals are trained to fight claims and pay out as little as possible? They do this by engaging in tactics that undervalue damages. For example, they may unfairly blame you for causing the motor vehicle accident by alleging comparative negligence. Or, they may twist and use your words against you.
With an attorney by your side, the insurance company won’t get away with these practices. Your lawyer will communicate and negotiate on your behalf so that you don’t inadvertently do something to hurt your claim.
Take Your Car Accident Case To Court If Necessary
However, if your case is complex, liability is in question, or the opposing party refuses to offer a fair compensation amount, you may find yourself in court. If that happens, you’ll need a lawyer.
Your attorney will file the legal documents, ensuring they’re accurate and contain everything necessary. They’ll also help you navigate the discovery process, including taking depositions and sending and responding to interrogatories and other requests. Lastly, your attorney will advocate for you in the courtroom and protect your rights.
Contact an Experienced Clearwater Car Accident Lawyer For a Free Initial Consultation
These are just a few ways an attorney can help after a traffic collision. It’s best to schedule a free case assessment with a few different lawyers to determine your legal options and whether you need legal assistance.