Do I Need An Attorney For My Car Accident?
You’ve recently been involved in a car accident. You were injured and the other driver was at fault.
Now, suddenly, the other driver’s insurance company is contacting you with a settlement offer. In fact, the insurance company is offering you several thousand dollars. You’re probably thinking, “Do I need an attorney for my car accident?”
The answer: yes. There are several reasons why you should hire an attorney for your car accident.
First: A Personal Injury Attorney Will Get You More Money
In an excellent study by Martindale-Nolo Research, Martindale-Nolo found personal injury attorneys got clients 3 times more money than when clients represented themselves. The study can be found here: https://www.lawyers.com/legal-info/personal-injury/compensation-duration/personal-injury-lawyers-do-they-make-a-difference-in-money-and-time.html.
This is a significant difference, but not at all surprising.
Personal injury attorneys know how to maximize your recovery. There are many reasons for this, including that personal injury attorneys know the law.
Additionally, personal injury attorneys know the reasonable settlement value of your claim. Determining the settlement value of your claim involves many factors, which I have written about before (see: https://barthelettelaw.com/what-is-my-personal-injury-case-worth/).
Second: A Personal Injury Attorney Knows The Law
If you are negotiating with an insurance company alone, you are already at a disadvantage.
This is because you likely do not know the numerous rules and deadlines that apply. Here are 2 examples.
In Florida you have 2 weeks to begin treating for your injuries in order to receive your personal injury protection (“PIP”) benefits. These personal injury protections benefits are significant; they pay up to $10,000 in medical expenses. Plus, your insurance company cannot request that you pay the personal injury protection benefits back from any settlement.
Additionally, personal injury attorneys know how to find all available insurance coverage. For example, the driver who caused an accident might have been working at the time of the accident. If so, the driver’s employer may have additional insurance coverage that could help cover your loss. This could be a significant benefit.
Third: A Personal Injury Attorney Knows The Evidence Rules
I’ve touched on this issue before (see: https://barthelettelaw.com/have-i-waited-too-long-to-bring-a-personal-injury-claim/). Preserving evidence shortly after an accident is critically important.
Taking photographs of injuries and vehicle damage, identifying witnesses, and visiting the accident scene must be done quickly. This evidence can dramatically help your case.
But before you even preserve evidence, you have to know what evidence to look for.
This is especially true for electronic evidence – including phone records, text messages, and a car’s “black box.” Personal injury attorneys know what evidence you need to prove you case.
Fourth: You Only Get One Chance For Your Claim
Once you settle your car accident claim with an insurance company, it’s closed forever.
Under Florida law, settlements are highly favored. As a result, courts will enforce settlements as long as the parties agreed to the key terms. Indeed, trying to “undo” a settlement or prove there was no settlement can be tough.
So it’s critical to get the best result since you don’t get a second chance.
Fifth: You Shouldn’t Go It Alone
As with any important decision or life challenge, you should not make it alone. Proverbs 11:14 reads, “Without good direction, people lose their way; the more wise counsel you follow, the better your chances.”
Sixth: A Personal Injury Attorney Will Help Carry Your Burden
I believe one my primary responsibilities as a personal injury attorney is to help carry my clients’ emotional burdens. I’m here to discuss your concerns, your worries, and hopes for the future.
I’ve found that providing emotional support gives clients an increased sense of calm and comfort.
Call Barthelette Law, Your Boca Raton Personal Injury Attorney
If you were involved in a car accident and want to see how I can help you, don’t hesitate to call. We are here to answer all of your questions about whether I can help you with your car accident.
We are Barthelette Law, your Boca Raton personal injury attorney!