When you are injured in a car accident, the last thing you want to deal with is paperwork and insurance claims. Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident can be overwhelming and stressful. That’s where a lawyer comes in. A lawyer can help you file a claim and can guide you through the entire process.
When seeking legal assistance after a car accident, it is important to understand what to expect from your lawyer. Below is an overview of the services that most lawyers offer when helping clients file car accident claims.
Expectations From a Lawyer When Filing a Car Accident Claim
Most lawyers offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case. During this consultation, the lawyer will ask questions about the accident and will review any documentation that you have, such as police reports or medical records.
The lawyer will use this information to determine whether or not you have a valid claim. According to Belsky, Weinberg & Horowitz, LLC, you should feel free to ask the lawyer any questions about their experience, the law firm’s resources, and how your case will be handled. There are also questions that your lawyer will ask you, such as whether or not you have been involved in any similar accidents in the past or if you have any preexisting medical conditions.
Additionally, the lawyer will also explain their fees and how they will be paid. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means they only get paid if you win your case. This also means that you will not have to pay any upfront costs but they can refuse to take your case if they feel it is not worth their time.
Once you have decided to hire a lawyer, they will begin gathering evidence to support your claim. This evidence may include medical records, police reports, eyewitness statements, and photos of the accident scene. The lawyer will also request your insurance policy information and any documentation that you have received from the insurance company.
For instance, if you were in a car accident, the lawyer may request a copy of the police report. The police report will contain information about the accident, such as the date and time it occurred, and will list any citations that were issued. The lawyer will also request your medical records to document the injuries that you sustained in the accident.
On the other hand, if you were injured at work, the lawyer may request your employment records, such as your job description and salary information. The lawyer will also request any documentation that you have received from your employer, such as workers’ compensation insurance forms.
Filing a Claim
After the lawyer has gathered all of the evidence, they will begin the process of filing a claim with the responsible insurance company. The lawyer will prepare and send a demand letter to the insurance company that outlines your injuries and damages. The demand letter will also state the amount of money that you are requesting from the insurance company.
The insurance company will then have a certain amount of time to respond to the demand letter. If the insurance company denies your claim or offers you a low settlement, the lawyer may file a lawsuit on your behalf.
On the other hand, if the insurance company offers you a fair settlement, the lawyer will help you negotiate the terms of the settlement. Once you have reached an agreement, the lawyer will prepare the settlement documents for you to sign.
Settlement or Trial
Most car accident claims are settled out of court. This means that the insurance company will agree to pay you a certain amount of money to settle your claim. Settlement negotiations can be handled by the lawyer or may be done through mediation, which is a process where both parties meet with a neutral third party to try to reach an agreement.
If the insurance company does not agree to settle your claim, the lawyer will file a lawsuit on your behalf. The lawsuit will be filed in the court system where the accident occurred. The case will then go through the litigation process, which includes discovery, depositions, and pretrial motions. If the case does not settle during this process, it will go to trial.
If your case goes to trial, both sides will present their evidence to a judge or jury. The judge or jury will then decide who is liable for the accident and how much money you should receive for your injuries and damages.
If you win your case, the responsible party will be required to pay you the amount of money that was awarded by the judge or jury. If you lose your case, you may still be responsible for paying your lawyer’s fees and expenses.
However, if you have agreed to a settlement, the lawyer will prepare and sign the release forms. The release forms state that you will not take any further legal action against the responsible parties.
After the release forms are signed, the insurance company will send you a check for the agreed-upon amount. The lawyer will then deduct their fees and expenses from the settlement and will send you a check for the remaining balance.
A lawyer will provide support throughout the entire process, from filing the claim to negotiating a settlement or going to trial. A lawyer will also keep you updated on the status of your case and will answer any questions that you have.
A lawyer can also help you recover other damages that you may be entitled to, such as lost wages and medical expenses. In addition, a lawyer can help you recover damages for pain and suffering. They may also advise on medical help because they usually have contacts and can recommend certain specialists and other service providers.
You should always seek legal assistance after a car accident. A lawyer can help you file a claim, gather evidence, and negotiate a settlement. If your case goes to trial, the lawyer will represent you in court. A lawyer can also help you recover other damages that you may be entitled to, such as lost wages and medical expenses.
In addition, a lawyer can help you recover damages for pain and suffering. They may also advise on medical help because they usually have contacts and can recommend certain specialists and other service providers.