If you have been in an accident, one thing you will eventually need to decide is if you need to hire an attorney. It can be a difficult decision, what with everyone talking about law suit abuse and insurance premium increases. You need to push through all of that “noise” and get to the determining factors. Let’s be honest, there are some instances where hiring a lawyer is not warranted.
Yes, I said it, you may not need an attorney for your accident claim, especially if you just have damage and the insurance company has immediately taken responsibility.
But when do you? When should you hire an attorney? How do you know it is time? Here are a few simple and quick signs that you will need to hire an attorney:
An Ambulance was Involved after the Accident
If your injuries were serious enough to warrant an ambulance to remove you from the scene, you more than likely need an attorney. Usually when an ambulance is involved, so is an emergency room visit, x-rays and other medical expenses, and you are going to need some help sorting through them all. An attorney can get to the bottom of the issues and make sure your bills get covered.
The Insurance Company is Giving you Trouble with Your Injury Claim
You have received treatment, or even continue to receive treatment and have received constant phone calls from insurance adjusters making all sorts of requests, demands and maybe evening threatening notions. If that is the case, you need an attorney. Insurance companies are out to protect one thing, and it isn’t you. It’s there bottom line. They will try every trick in the book to get you to settle early and cheaply. Don’t fall for their tricks; get in touch with an attorney that can help you deal with them. In fact once you hire an attorney, the insurance phone calls should stop.
You Missed Work Because of Your Injuries Caused by the Accident
Lost wages and time off are an important factor when determining if you should hire a lawyer. Generally, it becomes difficult to get insurance companies to reimburse you for time you should have been working and making a living. They will balk at paying and under most circumstances an attorney can argue for coverage. Did you take vacation or sick time to deal with your accident? Were you pulled from work by a doctor? Were you out for more than a weeks’ time? Then you need a lawyers help.
You Have Permanent Long Term Injuries
This is one of the more obvious signs that you need to hire an attorney, but it is worth pointing out as we have seen some insurance companies get out of paying for long term care or pain and suffering. You should be compensated fairly, and the long term effects of your accident should be considered in that compensation. Do not let an insurance company take advantage of you and your situation. An attorney will have the tools necessary to provide the information necessary to make long term assessments that the insurance company should consider.
Keep in mind that you may not appear to have all of the above signs. A few of them can get you into a cloud of mess with an insurance company. Although we recommend getting your health in order as a priority, we also want to make sure you protect your rights and your claim. If after reading through these signs you have questions and would like to discuss your accident further, contact our office for a FREE review of your case. It never hurts to discuss your options with an attorney, especially when it's free.