Car accidents are some of the most dreaded life occurrences, and whenever they happen, the victims remain devastated. Through compensation, car accident victims can recover both non-economic and economic losses resulting from the accident. Non-economic losses are usually physical injuries, e.g., minor soft tissue injuries, serious injuries, fatal injuries, e.t.c. Economic losses include lost wages, property damage and medical expenses. It is common knowledge that an accident can easily be a source of misery, which can drain what you have worked so hard in life to achieve. Therefore you have a duty to be diligent when seeking compensation to ensure that you receive enough compensation regarding the losses suffered.
One question that most people often ask is, do I need to get an attorney if I am in a car accident? The role of an attorney in a car accident is vital. Most competent attorneys usually offer a free consultation to accident victims. You don’t have to worry about case evaluation fees, and at the end of the consultation, you can have an in-depth view of your claim’s competency. If you or your loved one has been a victim of a car accident, a Northern Kentucky lawyer can have a look at your case and advise you on the way forward. After the initial consultation and if you decide to hire an attorney, below are some of the roles that the attorney will play in your case.
The competency of a compensation claim lies in the evidence available in your case. Facts without evidence weaken a claim, and in most instances, lack of evidence is a ground for your claim to be denied by the insurance company or even a court of law. Attorneys are well aware of what documents can help back up the facts in your claim. Documentation like; medical notes, bills, photos from the scene of the accident, witness statements, police reports e.t.c. are vital documents for anyone involved in a car accident. Once you issue a notice of an accident to an insurance company, you will be required to provide proof. With our attorney in your case, you can trust that all crucial evidence, including written witness statements, is in order.
Conduct Negotiations With The Insurance Company
Attorneys are masters of negotiations; this is a skill they learn both in law school and through experience. Once you submit your compensation claim to the insurance company, the company will not disburse the demanded amount of money without their adjuster analyzing your claim. After a thorough analysis of your case, the insurance company might propose a different compensation amount, usually lower than the one submitted by you. Look! An insurance company will always look for the slightest chance possible to underpay you. A Northern Kentucky lawyer is well aware of such tactics, armed with tough negotiation skills and knowledge in insurance laws. An attorney will ensure that you receive compensation in line with the damages suffered.
Where parties to a car accident compensation claim disagree, you might be forced to file a compensation claim for hearing and determination by a court of law. The litigation process is not easy, and it is even more challenging for a self-representing party. Attorneys are duly trained to represent car accident victims like you in their pursuit of justice. Right from the pretrial period, an attorney will draft all pleadings on your behalf. Further, an attorney will ensure that the required notices have been sent out to the defendants before any pleadings are filed in the court registry. Also, when your claim is finally ready for hearing, your attorney will attend and conduct all court sessions on your behalf and eventually file a case summary with relevant arguments for a judge to look at. The mentioned processes can be challenging in the absence of legal representation.
There are several factors to be considered before a compensation amount is arrived at. In case of property damage the insurance adjuster will look at the initial purchase price, value at the time of the accident and mileage to arrive at the compensation amount. Working closely with an attorney assures you that the proper figure has been arrived at. In case the attorney disagrees with the insurance company’s figures, they will contest the figures on your behalf and fight for better compensation.
Additionally, in the case of injuries, occupation and age determine the compensation one will receive. For example, a young surgeon loses their hands in an accident, and an old retiree man loses their members in the same accident. Regarding the multiplier method, the young surgeon will receive more compensation than the older man. However, this does not mean that an older man’s case will be handled with less diligence than the young surgeon. Remember, compensation is inclined to comply with the set legal standards, and whatever your age or occupation, our attorney will ensure that you receive maximum benefit.
What Will Happen If I Decide To Engage The Insurance Company Individually?
Denial Of The Claim
As earlier mentioned, an insurance company will take any opportunity to either deny your claim or underpay you. In the worst-case scenario, the insurance company might decide to deny your claim in its entirety. If you are someone who fears litigation because of the time and money it might cost you, there is a high probability you might give up.
Unreasonable Timelines For Accepting An Offer
An insurance company will offer you an undeserving offer as compensation and expect you to respond within a very short duration. The short period is usually a tactic to compel you to accept an unfair offer.
Take Advantage Of Your Vulnerability
After a car accident, most people are vulnerable due to trauma. Most of them have exhausted their finances taking care of both domestic and hospital bills. Insurance companies will come to you at your most vulnerable moment when you need money the most and give you an offer knowing full well that you will accept it.
An attorney is well aware of all the unfair tactics insurance companies employ to get the upper hand. Choosing to have an attorney assist you means you have someone on your team who understands insurance companies’ behavior, hence will ensure that your interest is well-represented at all costs.
How Long After An Accident Should I Hire An Attorney?
Most people often assume that they can institute a car accident claim whenever they are ready. However, car accident claims have a timeline within which they have to file, dependent on the loss have a timeframe within which they have to be filed. Following the statute of limitation, where the accident resulted in personal injuries, victims must institute their claims within one year. In property damage, the victim has up to a maximum of two years to initiate their claim. Contacting our attorneys as soon as possible will save you the harsh reality of your claim being denied due to time limitations. Our attorneys will ensure the required processes are commenced as soon as possible to avoid being caught up with the statute of limitation.
However, there are some exceptions to the statute of limitations regarding personal injuries and property damage claims. Factors like incapacity, disability, or absence of the defendant from the jurisdiction can serve as grounds for a time extension. Suppose you don’t seek the assistance of a lawyer. In that case, the defendants can take advantage of your ignorance and seek a dismissal of your case or denial of the compensation sought in a negotiation platform.