Car accidents have the power to be life-changing, and usually not for the better. You may experience severe injuries or emotional trauma that may take years to heal, if ever.
Even with minor injuries or damage, you may suffer a whiplash or brain injury that may not show up right away. That’s why it’s important to see a doctor right after the accident. Once you’re able, it’s time to consider a personal injury lawyer to hold the other party accountable.
Why A Personal Injury Lawyer Is A Good Idea
You should find a skilled, experienced personal injury lawyer if your case involves:
- Medical bills costing more than a thousand or two
- A stay in a hospital
- Broken bones, or other injuries with long-term health effects
- Multiple injuries
- A death
- Missing more than a few days of work/school or other regular activity
- Additional losses, such as:
- Pain & suffering
- Emotional trauma (i.e., PTSD)
- Loss of companionship/consortium
- Fault is in dispute
- There is a problem with the police report, insurance documentation, etc.
- You are having trouble with an insurance company
- Other problems that you are unable to resolve
Remember that a lawyer has the experience and understanding of the process to handle your case faster than you can. You may not have an accident but once in your life, so you may not know or understand everything that’s involved. A lawyer does–it’s their job, it’s what they do.
A personal injury lawyer can negotiate for a settlement that will cover all of your needs, including medical expenses, long term care, lost wages, and other expenses you may not realize you will have. Settling your case out of court, without a lawyer, may short-change you for monies needed for you to recover, and possibly live the rest of your life.
Insurance companies are particularly pernicious after an accident. They are primarily concerned with how much money they have to pay out, and ways to keep from paying. If your injuries require lifelong treatment (i.e., physical therapy), your insurer may find ways to minimize your settlement.
A lawyer is your advocate who:
- Documents your injuries, pain and suffering
- Navigate through the court system
- Protects your rights and evens the score (the opposing party and insurer already have lawyers)
- Keep abreast of dates, including deadlines and statutes of limitations
- Examine evidence
- Investigate to find out who is truly responsible for your accident
- Can advise on the best course of action for aspects of your case
- Help you through mediation, arbitration, and a possible trial
Without a lawyer by your side, you may end up leaving thousands of dollars behind that you need to heal and get on with your life.
When You May Not Need A lawyer
There may be times when hiring a lawyer isn’t necessary, and may not be worth paying the fees. If your claim:
- Doesn’t involve injures like broken bones or anything that causes you to miss a few days of work/school after a medical examination
- The damage to your vehicle was minor
- Your vehicle is a high-mileage used vehicle with a low resale value
- Your claim can be resolved in small-claims court. While you can have a lawyer represent you, but you might pay more in attorney’s fees than your claim is worth
- If the insurance company is offering you a fair settlement. Is it worth it to give a lawyer one-third of your settlement if they’re giving you what you need?
Remember that most personal injury attorneys offer free consultations, and many will let you know if your case is worth them taking it. You can also speak with a few attorneys with a free consultation, and decide which route is best for you.
Personal Injury In West Virginia? Call Chad Love Today
With over 20 years’ experience working with personal injury cases and extensive trial experience, Chad Love is ready to fight for you. Call The Love Law Firm today at (304) 344-5683 and schedule your free consultation. We’ll discuss your case with you, explain your options and what to expect. We offer contingency fee arrangements, and there’s no fee if we don’t win your case.