There are around six million car accidents every year in the U.S. and three million people injured annually as a result. While not every crash requires a lawyer, particularly minor fender benders, in many instances, it makes sense to get a St. Louis car accident attorney or a lawyer who focuses on handling these types of cases in whichever city you live.
The lawyers for insurance companies and the claims adjusters will start working on a claim right after the accident occurs. In accidents where their insured may have been liable, there is a good possibility that they’ll try to shift liability to the other driver to minimize their financial impact. By reaching out to an attorney as soon as possible after the accident, you’ll have access to professional advice and guidance when it comes to dealing with insurance representatives. This can be extremely helpful in navigating the confusing and often chaotic world of insurance claims.
While there are many situations that can benefit from having an attorney, you should definitely get a lawyer after a car accident if any of these apply.
Significant Property Damage or Injuries
As noted, minor fender benders in which there are no injuries probably don’t call for hiring a lawyer. But if you suffered from injuries or there is significant damage to your vehicle, it’s important to contact a car accident attorney to ensure your legal rights will be protected and you receive proper compensation.
If You Suspect or It’s Obvious That Another’s Actions Led to the Accident
If the other driver’s actions likely had a role in the cause of the accident, it’s a good idea to talk to an attorney. Proving that the driver who hit you was at fault is easy in some cases but can be difficult in others. A lawyer who is experienced at handling car accident cases can evaluate the evidence, helping you make your case that the other driver was at fault. During the initial consultation, they should point out the strengths and weaknesses of the case so that you can make the best decision as to whether or not to proceed.
Severe Permanent Injuries
If you’ve suffered from severe, permanent injuries, you’re facing a lifetime of bills and other costs that come from hospitalizations due to complications, future surgeries, a decline in earning capacities, and possibly modifications that must be made to your home, not to mention the negative impact on the quality of your life. In this situation, you always want to get a lawyer to ensure that you recover proper compensation, preventing the possibility of bankruptcy or worse.
The Other Driver’s Insurance is Offering a Low Settlement
Never make an official statement to a third-party insurance provider or agree to a settlement without talking to an attorney. Without a professional at your side, odds are any money offered will be a low-ball amount which means you’re unlikely to fully recover the amount needed for expenses faced now and in the future. Once you’ve accepted a settlement, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to ask for more later. A lawyer will help you analyze the extent of damages sustained and provide a thorough understanding of all the costs and suffering that might be inflicted.