It is a risk for anybody to try and handle a personal injury claim on their own because the insurance company is experienced and handles these matters all the time. They have adjusters who handle cases that do not have lawyers on them because they know that the average person does not fully understand the process, and the insurance company is capable of taking advantage of this lack of understanding in a personal injury situation.
Therefore, even for a small claim you should still seek the opinion of a Clearwater car accident lawyer to make sure that you are in the best position and cannot be taken advantage of. An attorney can advocate on your behalf and ensure that insurance is offering a fair amount.
Why to Hire a Lawyer
Even if a claim seems simple, or the injuries are relatively minor, it is still important to consult with an attorney to ensure that the individual is not being taken advantage of. Insurance companies have more experience in these settlements and claims than the average person. Therefore, it is important to have an attorney who also has this experience when interacting with insurance companies when filing a claim.
Insurance companies have specific adjusters who handle cases with claimants without attorneys, and they can take advantage of people like this. They may offer $1,000 immediately if the claimant waives the claim or $25,000 that they would pay over three months. They try to entice people to take the money and run as opposed to hiring an attorney and losing a percentage of the settlement.
In reality, the settlements for Clearwater car accidents are generally much larger when attorneys are involved. If a person were to try to handle the case on their own, insurance companies know exactly what they are doing and they try to resolve the case as cheaply and as quickly as possible before the person understands the full ramifications of what happened to them as a result of this car accident.
The biggest misconception people have is that because an attorney is taking a percentage of the settlement, that they will receive less money if they hire an attorney than if they handle the matter on their own. In reality, attorneys add so much value to a case by protecting a person’s rights to make sure that they do not sign away anything. An attorney understands the process, and can guide you through it to ensure you receive the most compensation possible.
The attorney handles everything for a person from beginning to end, including contacting the insurance company and getting in contact with an adjuster who handles individuals with attorneys. An attorney can also keep a case streamlined, organized, and can handle all correspondence with all of the insurance companies involved, as there can be more than two or three insurance companies involved in a car accident case.
Biggest Mistakes that can be Made
One of the most heartbreaking mistakes a victim can make is when the insurance company contacts the victim within days of the accident and offers them a sum of money that seems like a lot of money at that time. The client accepts the offer, waives all of their rights, and takes the thousand dollars that day when they do not realize they have $25,000 worth of treatment they need in the future. Often, injuries develop over the days and weeks following the accident. If the injured goes to the emergency room and they do not send for MRI’s, a person will not know if they have certain soft tissue damage.
That is why these insurance companies contact clients right away. One of the biggest mistakes clients make is signing away something too early and then they contact an attorney after to see if they can go after the insurance for more money. The answer is no. Once they sign the dotted line, the case is over, you waived your rights to go after the insurance company to pay for the damages that they insured and the at-fault driver caused.
When Its Too Late
It is never too late to contact a personal injury lawyer but sometimes, a person is in a position where the personal injury lawyer cannot do anything if they have already signed away their rights. There are circumstances where people have signed away with their rights but were coerced and the injury lawyer was able to get it overturned. Contact a lawyer even if you think you have signed away your rights just to make sure that there is nothing else they can do.
It may be too late to contact the personal injury lawyer if the car accident happened 20 years ago and the individual is trying to attach this injury to that car accident. It is outside the statute of limitations, of four years. Sometimes, there is nothing that a personal injury lawyer can do for you, but you should still not hesitate to contact the personal injury lawyer and ask if there is anything that they can do.