If you're the victim of an auto accident, you may be wondering whether hiring a personal injury lawyer is necessary. After all, everyone can see the injuries you have suffered, and there is video footage showing how the other driver's negligence caused the accident. Surely, your insurer will do the right thing and reward you with enough benefits to cover your losses, right?
Unfortunately, the real world doesn't always work like that. Your insurer may refuse or offer compensation that doesn't match your losses, so you're left to fight for your case. Here are three questions to guide you if you need to hire a lawyer.
Have You Suffered Any Injuries from the Accident?
If you didn't sustain any injury from the accident or it's just a minor bruise, you may visit your primary care physician for examination or treatment and then go home. Your insurer or that of the driver responsible for the accident will most likely cover the costs. In such a case, hiring a personal injury lawyer wouldn't be necessary.
However, if the accident resulted in more severe or expensive injuries, hiring a lawyer will be necessary. They will help you file a claim or lawsuit so the negligent driver can pay for their mistakes. If the accident caused you permanent injuries or disabilities, the costs are even higher from both emotional and financial perspectives, so hire a lawyer to ensure the most favorable outcome.
Who Was Responsible for the Crash?
If you know who exactly caused the accident and they have accepted liability, you may be able to handle your own claims. This is especially possible if you have several credible witnesses or unchallengeable video footage showing what happened.
Unfortunately, many cases aren't that simple. You may know who caused the accident but not have enough evidence to prove it. In that case, you'll need a lawyer to collect new evidence and prove where the responsibility lies. If two or more persons caused the accident, the case is even more complex and difficult to prove, so get a competent lawyer to ensure all the liable people are held accountable.
Have You Negotiated with Insurance Companies Before?
If you're an experienced negotiator who has handled multiple personal injury cases before, you may be able to fight for your benefits.
If you have never dealt with insurance adjusters before, approaching them on your own may not be a good idea. Insurance adjusters will do everything possible to cut their losses. They may even convince you to take a low-ball offer, only to realize later that it's not enough to cover your losses. Hence, get an experienced personal injury lawyer to negotiate for you.
Contact a local personal injury lawyer to learn more.