Seeking compensation on your own after a car crash could frustrate you. A car accident attorney can assemble vital evidence, advise you on how to file your claim, negotiate with insurance companies, and get a fair settlement.
The breadth of a car accident lawyer's services may surprise you. Here's a look at how they can help you navigate your claim and work toward maximum compensation.
What Is a Car Accident Attorney?
A car accident lawyer is a legal expert with vast experience handling auto-collision cases. They can help you bring the at-fault driver to account and get paid for the economic and non-economic damages you suffered after the crash.
The at-fault driver failed in their duty of care if, for instance, the accident occurred because they were not obeying specific traffic laws. However, you or your lawyer should prepare a strong case showing their negligence.
The aspects of negligence include:
- The driver was supposed to show you a standard level of care.
- They violated that standard of care.
- An auto accident resulted from them violating the standard of care, leading to the injuries or property damages you suffered.
- Your damages brought about financial losses and expenses.
What Do Car Accident Lawyers Do?
A lawyer works to fight for your rights and assist you in obtaining fair compensation. Getting their guidance is particularly important because pursuing financial awards can be a daunting experience. You have to present a strong case that shows the extent of the other party’s liability.
While some personal injury cases resolve quickly with a settlement, you may have to take your claim to a civil court. A lawyer will offer appropriate guidance.
Make a full recovery your priority after an accident. An attorney will let you focus on getting better by handling the legal aspects.
Below are some specific things they may do to present a strong case for you.
Assessing the Case
The first thing a car accident attorney does after you contact them is assess your case. This includes doing the following things:
After contacting a car accident attorney, they can meet with you to evaluate the merits of your case and recommend next steps. This is also a great opportunity to assess whether the attorney is a good fit for your case.
There are numerous important details that help to show liability after a car crash, including police records, witness statements, and medical records. Attorneys collect and inspect the information to ensure it is accurate and detailed enough to benefit your case greatly.
Attorneys typically review available evidence to establish liability, which could range from defective vehicle parts, negligent driving, or other contributing factors.
Investigating the Accident
Part of presenting a strong case is making a sound investigation and coming up with evidence of liability. This can involve:
Your car accident attorney can collaborate with accident reconstruction experts to establish the events that led to the accident. This is important in helping to prove that the other individual is indeed guilty and liable.
Identifying Contributing Factors
Poor road conditions and mechanical failures, among other things, may have contributed to the accident. Your car accident attorney can investigate those aspects and establish how they triggered the accident. They may also investigate other parties involved in the accident and help you present a strong case.
Calculating Damages and Compensation
One of the key highlights of a personal injury case is recouping sufficient payment. Your attorney can take into account your past, present, and future expenses to get a fair amount.
The compensation should cover:
- Medical expenses. This includes rehabilitation costs, medical bills, the cost of ongoing care, and future medical expenses.
- Lost income. Your car accident attorney can evaluate your lost earnings and the income opportunities you will lose due to the accident, taking into account temporary or permanent disabilities.
- Pain and suffering. Non-economic damages can include diminished quality of life, emotional distress, and pain, which you should be compensated for. Your attorney can help come up with a satisfactory amount.
Collaborating With Other Professionals
Numerous specialists may have to be involved during a car accident case, for instance:
- Medical experts. Medical professionals can help to assess injuries, offer medical reports, and give expert testimony should the case go before a civil court.
- Accident reconstructionists. These are experts who help to show exactly how a crash occurred. They investigate the accident scene thoroughly, gather vital evidence, and reconstruct the sequence of events that led to the accident.
- Private investigators. The work of private detectives includes conducting interviews, gathering additional evidence, and collecting any relevant information that could help to strengthen your claim.
Your car accident attorney can collaborate with the relevant professionals and present a strong case for you. They can meet and liaise with the experts throughout the case, ensuring they play their role as necessary.
Dealing With Insurance Adjusters
An insurance adjuster handles the claim that results from an auto accident. They do this on behalf of the other entity's insurance company. Your car accident attorney can meet with the adjuster and negotiate fair compensation.
Since insurance adjusters work on behalf of insurance companies, they try to look for ways to limit or lower the amount you should be compensated. It is the job of your car accident lawyer to negotiate a higher amount. They can leverage their legal knowledge, calculate all your damages, and present strong evidence that the adjuster cannot refute.
Settling vs. Going to Court
At times, you should go to court rather than accept a settlement. Your car accident attorney can advise you appropriately and present your case at a civil court should that be necessary. Going to court can particularly be important when an insurance company outrightly refuses to give you a fair settlement.
Legal Representation and Advocacy
Your car accident attorney has your best interests at heart and can fight for you to get worthwhile compensation. If your case goes to court, the attorney is responsible for the following:
Filing Legal Documents
It is the car accident attorney's duty to collect all essential evidence and present it strongly for you to win the case. They can file all the necessary documents, including complaints, motions, and court briefs.
Representing You in Court
Your car accident attorney can fight for you in a civil court to ensure you are fairly compensated. They can present strong evidence, cross-examine witnesses, and conduct compelling legal representations.
Protecting Your Rights
Your attorney won't relent until you get the justice you deserve. They can safeguard your rights all through the legal process, ensuring due process and that you are fairly treated.
Navigating Through Complex Legal Procedures
Several legal challenges could hinder the success of a personal injury case, such as:
The Statute of Limitations
This is the time limit set for presenting a car accident claim and obtaining appropriate compensation. It starts from the date of the collision, and when it lapses, your case could easily be thrown out. Your car accident attorney can help you gather all the essential evidence and file your case within the specified period to get the best chance of compensation.
Procedural formalities, document submissions, and filing deadlines are some of the legal requirements that come into play during a car accident case. These legal aspects could be complicated to ensure on your own, which can negatively affect your case. However, an attorney for car accident has the appropriate legal knowledge and can ensure that all requirements are followed.
The comparative fault comes into play when several parties have to share the blame for the accident. Your car accident lawyer can help you navigate the scenario and work with the other lawyers involved to ensure you get a fair percentage of the compensation.
Providing Support and Guidance
When you are on your own as you recover from a collision, the experience could be painful and difficult. Your car accident attorney could support and guide you until you are ready to resume your normal life. Part of this help can include:
A car collision could leave you stressed, traumatized, or bring about feelings of anxiety. A car accident attorney may have already worked with other clients in your position and understands how to navigate the situation. Their support could thus help minimize the emotional anguish.
Explaining Legal Processes
A non-lawyer may find a car accident case's legal aspects and terminology too complicated to understand. You may also need medical treatment, making the experience even more difficult. A car accident lawyer can explain the entire process and make it easier. This includes clarifying expectations and addressing your questions or concerns.
Keeping You Informed About the Case's Progress
Part of a car accident attorney's duty is to keep you informed about the progress of your case. They can inform you about any updates and significant developments, ensuring transparency and maintaining a healthy client-lawyer relationship.
Frequently Asked Questions About Car Accident Lawyers
How Do I Know if I Need a Car Accident Lawyer?
Seek an attorney if you suffered injuries or property damage due to a car crash.
You will definitely need a personal injury lawyer if:
- The accident resulted in grave injuries of fatalities.
- The other side disputes liability.
- The insurance company denies your claim or offers an insufficient amount.
- Complex issues triggered the accident, or multiple parties contributed to the crash
- You don't know what legal steps to take or cannot handle insurance negotiations.
What Are the Typical Fees for Car Accident Lawyers?
Car accident attorneys typically work on a contingency basis, so you only pay them a percentage of your compensation if they recover any for you. Such a fee structure ensures that you can get justice even when you do not have the financial resources to cater to upfront costs.
Discussing the fees and any additional costs with your attorney during the initial consultation is advisable. A clear understanding of the payment terms will avoid disagreements later on.
Can I Handle My Car Accident Case Without a Lawyer?
No, seeking compensation without the help of a lawyer is not recommended, especially when the case is complex. An attorney has the legal expertise to build a strong case, navigate the legal hurdles, negotiate with insurers, and maximize compensation.
What Steps Should I Take After a Car Accident?
Make your top priorities obtaining medical care and reporting the accident.
Report the accident immediately when possible. This will allow the police to capture essential details that can affect your case.
The crash report could have details regarding:
- The at-fault party
- The other party's insurance company
- Accident scene information
- Details of any available witnesses
- Apparent damages
- Apparent injuries
- Factors that may have triggered the accident
Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
Car accident attorneys have plenty of experience handling car collision claims. They have helped numerous individuals obtain fair compensation and can also help you or your loved one. From dealing with huge, intimidating insurance companies to representing you in court when necessary, they can get you fair compensation. Call a personal injury lawyer in Myrtle Beach today for your free consultation.