Ten Reasons You Need An Attorney After A Car Accident
If you have been injured in a car accident because of someone else’s negligence, then you have rights according to state laws. You need to protect your rights after your auto accident, particularly so you do not end up paying for someone else’s reckless behaviors. In many cases, suing is the right course of action after a car accident. Continue reading to learn 10 reasons for hiring a personal injury lawyer after your car accident.
You have limited time to sue
Most states have statutes of limitations for car accident claims limiting you to between one and two years for filing your claim. Not suing during that time period means you give up any right to sue forever.
You need to follow your state’s rules for suing the negligent party
You may have to file a police report or file notice with a certain period of time for your claim to be valid. There are other requirements and deadlines under state laws, too. This is just one good reason why you need an experienced personal injury lawyer, one who has a background of handling car accident claims like yours in your state. This lawyer will protect your rights and ensure nothing is done to jeopardize your right to sue the negligent party.
Your insurance company may protect itself, not you
Most insurance companies try to protect people they insure and compensate them for damages. But insurance companies are also businesses that must be profitable. They want to keep costs low. This means your needs and your insurance company’s agenda may not line up. Hiring an attorney for your claim means you have an advocate for your rights and interests.
You may not know all of the damages you are entitled to receive
There are a wide variety of potential damages available to people injured in auto accidents. These include medical bills, lost income, emotional distress and pain and suffering. Your loved ones may even be able to recover damages if you suffer disability or death. Not having a personal injury lawyer or your side means you are likely to overlook some of the compensation you are owed.
Proving your case is complex
Even when you think your case is clear and you have the witnesses and police report saying the other party was indeed negligent, proving the negligence and breach of duty of care can be difficult. There are many elements involved in winning your personal injury lawsuit. So you need a lawyer who understands the law and can provide case references, citations and expert witnesses.
Laws are different according to your state
Each state defines its own auto insurance and auto accident rules. In the United States there are 12 no-fault states where you cannot sue after a car accident, except in special circumstances. In some states you can sue even when you are partially to blame in the accident, as comparative negligence. In other states you cannot sue if you contributed to the cause of your accident, as contributory negligence. In your state, a licensed attorney will explain your rights and laws that apply to you
You need to know your options toward settlement
Most cases settle out of court. This means the insurance company or defendant are likely to provide a settlement offer. Your attorney will help you understand what happens if you accept this offer and what rights you forfeit by doing so. Your lawyer will help you decide if the right decision is to settle your case.
Filing a lawsuit means follow your state’s complex rules
Deciding to sue is one thing. Ensuring you meet all state requirements in filing papers is another. There are complex rules for everything from the brief’s font size to how legal precedent is stated and what evidence is allowed. You need a lawyer who understands these rules and follows them.
Proving your case is not easy
You may be permitted to “discover” information from the opposing side in your case. You may be limited in what type of evidence and witnesses you present. You may even be restricted in what questions you can ask and how those questions may be phrased in court. Your side also needs to conduct extensive legal research to convince the jury or court of your claim. This makes proving your case very difficult, if not impossible, without a skilled car accident lawyer.
Not hiring an attorney means losing money
If you do not sue before deadlines, if you neglect to sue for the right damages, improperly present your information or if you sue the wrong defendants, you will be restricted from ever suing again. So you will have used up your only opportunity for gaining the recovery you need and are stuck with your accident and injury expenses, despite someone else having been negligent.
All of the above are reasons why you need a personal injury lawyer for your car accident case.