When To Get An Attorney For A Car Accident

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Legally reviewed by Eric Feldman on January 6, 2021 Eric Feldman is a member of the 1-800-Injured network.

After a car accident, the steps that you will need to take in order to resolve the situation can be overwhelming. There is only a certain number of days you have before you need to submit a claim with the insurance company (the other driver’s company if they are responsible for the crash), and you will need to manage doctors appointments if you were injured, missed work if your injuries are severe enough, and all of the other complications that come with this major disruption to your normal life. In addition, you know that you should hire a car accident attorney – but where can you find the time to reach out to countless law firms hoping to find a lawyer that is ready to take your case? 

The situation described here is one of many reasons why people choose to file their own claim with the insurance company, and a good reason why many people walk away with settlements that are far less than what they actually deserve. Working with a personal injury attorney is a wise decision if you are in an accident that someone else caused — especially if you are injured. Hiring an attorney is both convenient and affordable when you work through a referral service like 1-800-Injured.

Car Accident

Contact 1-800-Injured To Connect With an Attorney Today

1-800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service. We make it easy for victims to find an attorney in their area who is ready and willing to take their case as soon as possible, simplifying this step in an otherwise complex and stressful process. Insurance companies want you to believe that hiring an attorney is overkill, or that you can wait until after the investigation of your claim is concluded to decide whether or not a lawyer is right for you, but the reality is that you should be working with a lawyer before you even file a claim in order to maximize your chances of a positive outcome. 

1-800-Injured will connect you with an attorney free of charge. It is important that victims have the support they deserve when going up against a major insurance company. Having competent and aggressive representation through each step of the process is a proven way to maximize your chances of getting a well-deserved settlement, instead of a lowball offer from an insurance company.

When Is the Right Time To Hire a Lawyer?

The reality is that the sooner you can hire an attorney, the better chance you give yourself to work towards a positive outcome for your case. From the moment you make your first contact with the at-fault driver’s insurance company, they will spring into action to find every possible way to limit your settlement. Insurance companies have decades of experience limiting settlement amounts, and your situation will be no different. If you file a claim on your own, you will be expected to handle this complicated process while trying to recover from your injuries and get your life back on track after someone else’s dangerous or negligent behavior put you in this situation, to begin with.

It is easy enough to open a claim with the other insurance company on your own, but the reality is that if you hire an attorney before you make your first contact with them, you will have an opportunity to leave the entire process up to an experienced legal professional while you are able to focus on your own personal needs. The stress and uncertainty of your claim will be reduced because you will be able to ask questions directly to your lawyer about your case, instead of not knowing or taking on additional and irrational fear about your financial future. Your lawyer has the necessary experience and will be happy to address your concerns.

Once the insurance company returns to you with an initial offer after their investigation, you will still be able to hire an attorney if you have not done so yet. Just remember that at this point the insurance company will have a few weeks headstart and your lawyer will need to catch up. At the same time, any statements you made or documentation you submitted to the insurance company can be leveraged to support their own case. Your lawyer will need to work extra hard to mitigate these issues and maximize your settlement. By hiring a lawyer immediately, they can devise a roadmap for you, advise you through each step of the claims investigation, and ultimately build a case that is designed to get you the money you deserve – not just the pittance that the insurance company hopes that they can settle for.

The Basics of Hiring a Car Accident Attorney

Hiring an attorney is not as difficult as many may initially believe it to be, especially when you are able to work with a referral service like 1-800-Injured to find available lawyers. Otherwise, your first steps will consist of reaching out to many different law firms in the hopes that you connect with an attorney in your area who is able to take your case before you must then decide whether or not they are a good fit for you. It is important that you have a rapport with your attorney, because, for the next months (or years), they will be fighting the insurance company on your behalf, and may even need to bring you through a full lawsuit in order to get you the money that you truly deserve.

Ask Hard Questions During Your Initial Conversations

During your initial consultation with your attorney, it is important that you ask some “uncomfortable” questions so that you know exactly what arrangement you are entering and the type of work that you can expect.  Some are uncomfortable talking about payment, but remember that compensation is the exact reason that you are working together. Many personal injury lawyers use contingency fees to get paid, meaning that they take a percentage of the final settlement, and do not charge their clients if they lose. However, this does also mean that an attorney may not take your case if they do not think that there is a high chance of winning, since their income depends on it. 

In addition to addressing payment, it is important to ask the attorney about the way they interact with their clients. When you call, will you speak with them, or will you be speaking with assistants and paralegals? If you expect to have a one-on-one relationship with your attorney, but find that you are bounced around once you begin working together, you may feel like you are not getting the attention that you expected. Of course, the paralegals at your attorney’s office play an important role in your case, so if you expect that they will be who you work with, you may still be satisfied with the level of care and attention that you will receive.

Finally, ask about cases similar to yours that the law firm has dealt with in the past. This can be helpful for a number of reasons, particularly because it gives you a sense of what you may be able to expect in your own case (although no two cases are alike, and you cannot expect the results or path to be identical), and an idea of how your attorney handles cases like yours. Asking these difficult or uncomfortable questions can be a great way to get a sense of what you can really expect when choosing your personal injury attorney, and great use of your free initial consultation. 

Check the Online Reviews

Speaking directly with an attorney or representative of a law firm is a great way to get a sense of their work and what you can expect while you are their client, but you can also take a look at reviews online to get an unfiltered sense of how other people felt working with them. Keep in mind that you may encounter some scathing negative reviews, but you can ask about any that you find particularly concerning during your initial consultation. It gives the law firm an opportunity to provide you with both sides of the story, and it may turn out to be nothing at all. Additionally, it will give you something else that you can learn about during your free consultation so that you feel like you have covered all of your bases before making a decision.

Contact 1-800-Injured Today

This process starts with getting connected with an attorney who is ready to take your case, so the sooner you reach out to 1-800-Injured for a case evaluation, the better. We will be able to connect you with a personal injury and car accident lawyer who is experienced in accidents like yours and will be ready to jump in immediately to get you the money you deserve. We look forward to helping you through this process.

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