When Do I Need an Attorney for a Car Accident Claim?
Car accident claims are almost always complex because you must prove negligence in order for your claim to succeed. Unless you had a little fender bender that just caused a small dent, you should always hire an attorney after a motor vehicle accident. When you have car accident injuries, the claims process becomes more complicated, especially if those injuries are severe or catastrophic. You can also recover more than medical expenses – you can also recover lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Types of Damages You Could Recover for Car Accident Injuries
Depending on your injuries, you could recover compensatory damages in the form of economic and non-economic damages. Most who file a car accident claim can recover economic damages, which have a monetary value.
The court orders a defendant to pay both types of compensatory damages in an attempt to make you whole again. However, to recover non-economic damages, which do not have a monetary value, your injuries must be long-term or permanent, or you must have lost a loved one.
Economic damages include medical expenses, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity, death-related expenses, and replacement or repair of destroyed or damaged personal property.
Non-economic damages include pain and suffering, loss of quality of life, loss of consortium and inconvenience. It can be very difficult to obtain all of the damages you are entitled to unless you have an experienced car accident lawyer.
The Consequences of Catastrophic Injuries
When you file a claim with the insurance companies, you may not be able to collect immediately if your doctors have not fully diagnosed your injuries. For example, a doctor might have diagnosed a traumatic brain injury but may not know the effects of the injury until weeks later.
Traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries sometimes cause long-term or permanent disabilities. It is better to wait to start settlement negotiations until you find out how these catastrophic injuries will affect you.
When you retain an attorney for a personal injury claim for car accident injuries, the attorney can file a claim with the insurance company and let the insurance company know that you have outstanding tests to determine the extent of your injuries.
Once your car accident lawyer receives more information regarding your injuries, he or she may hire expert witnesses to testify as to the severity of your injuries so that you might recover non-economic damages.
Working with Insurance Companies
People often ask about settling their own claims. However, we do not recommend that as insurance companies use several tricks to deny your claim or, at the least, offer you an amount that might not cover your medical expenses, never mind other damages. Remember that all insurance companies are in business to make money – any claim decreases their bottom line.
Car accident attorneys know the tricks insurance companies play. Additionally, insurance companies know that car accident lawyers will not hesitate to go to court to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Thus, insurance companies are more apt to settle for a fair and reasonable amount when you have an attorney involved.
Losing a Loved One in a Car Accident
After losing a loved one in a car accident, your world is turned upside down. The last things you want to think about are hospital bills, ambulance expenses and the probate process. A car accident lawyer can help you ensure your loved one’s estate recovers the compensation you deserve to cover any hard expenses, including medical and funeral expenses, plus non-economic damages such as emotional distress, loss of consortium, loss of companionship and inconvenience.
A car accident lawyer can help you recover the compensation you deserve and ensure the settlement goes through the probate process.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer Today
Finally, a car accident lawyer ensures that all required documents are filed on time, whether for an insurance claim or to file a lawsuit against the defendant. If you do not file a car accident claim on time, you are forever barred from recovering damages.
Contact a car accident lawyer at Koglmeier Law Group, PLC for a free case evaluation as soon as possible.
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