When you’ve been in a car accident, you might not be sure if you need a legal professional to help you or if you can handle it on your own. You’re likely asking, “Do I need a lawyer after a car accident?”
There are nearly 40,000 fatal accidents in the U.S. and if you lost someone or you or someone you know were injured in one of these accidents then you might be due compensation. If you aren’t sure if you have a case, you might want to speak with an attorney.
Continue reading this article to learn whether you need an attorney or not.
Do I Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident? – Your Answer
It’s always a best practice to let professionals like Portner Bond, PLLC deal with legal matters. If you want to get a proper settlement, you may not be able to build a compelling case on your own.
1. How Severe Is Your Injury?
Before you lawyer up, you should consider how severe your injury is. If you have a sprained wrist or a small injury, you don’t likely need to hire an attorney. The insurance company is likely to pay for the expenses of your injury and you can go on about your normal life.
On the other hand, if you have a severe injury and it may last for an extended amount of time, you may want to consider hiring a lawyer. Car accident lawyers usually operate by getting a percentage of your case if you win vs. asking you to pay upfront. Since you don’t have to pay anything upfront, you don’t have to worry about having money when you want to hire an attorney to help you.
When you have a severe and/or long-term injury, trying to figure out how much money to ask for pain and suffering can be complicated. In complicated cases, it does help to have an attorney on your side.
2. How Well Do You Know the Law?
If you know the law well, you might consider self-representation. Even if you have some knowledge of the law, there could be important things that you miss which could hurt your case.
When you have an attorney on your side, they can let you know about the statute of limitations so you don’t miss out on your settlement because you filed too late. When you have an attorney on your side, they know what to do to help you defend against any arguments the defense might have.
3. Are You Ready to Do All Necessary Legwork?
There is a lot of work that goes into taking on a case on your own. It’s hard enough to do things when you’re in good condition. When you’re hurting and not feeling your best, it isn’t likely the best time to put a lot of time-consuming work on your plate.
When you have an attorney working on your case for you, things may progress faster. The reason things may progress faster when you have an attorney on your side is that they know how to file properly. They also know how to take care of certain things you might not think of.
Once the attorney has everything together, they will organize the evidence and prepare the settlement demand letter for an amount they think they can help you get. If you don’t have an attorney, you’ll have to figure the numbers out on your own and with your limited knowledge.
Finding the Best Attorney for You
If you think you want to hire an attorney after everything you’ve heard, you need to make sure you hire someone that knows how to negotiate. You shouldn’t hire just anyone because you only get one opportunity to plead your case. Here are some things that can help you make sure you choose a good attorney.
1. Check Reviews
Almost every attorney has a number of reviews online. Look at different sources for reviews from Yelp, Google My Business and anywhere else you can find them mentioned. While reviews shouldn’t be the only way you check into an attorney you’re considering, it is a good place to start.
2. Ask for Referrals
If you look at reviews and the attorney looks pretty good on paper, you shouldn’t be afraid to ask them for referrals that will vouch for them. They should at least have a couple of people that are willing to vouch for their abilities as a car accident attorney.
3. Interview Multiple Attorneys
It can be tempting to bring on the first attorney that you speak to if they seem like they are good enough to get the job done. While it might be tempting to choose someone quickly, you should interview more than one or two attorneys.
Don’t be afraid to ask them questions about how long they’ve been practicing in the area, how many cases they’ve settled outside of court as well as how many cases went to court. You need to get an idea of whether they could handle your case if it did come down to getting in front of a jury or if they are banking on getting a settlement out of court.
Learn More About Legal & Beyond
Now that you know the answer to, “Do I need a lawyer after a car accident?” why stop learning there? We have articles on this site that can help you with other legal issues and beyond.
Browse our site, find your favorite section, drop a bookmark and come back soon for more good reads.