When to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer

When to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer

Suffering a personal injury can be a life-altering event, leaving you physically and emotionally drained. In such situations, hiring a personal injury lawyer can make all the difference in navigating the complex legal process and ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve.

Unfortunately, getting a settlement check is by no means automatic. First, you must establish that you have the legal right to compensation. You do that by coming to the table with proof that someone else's negligent actions injured you. You must have an attorney's knowledge and investigative skills to compile the case that will entitle you to compensation.

Your Vero Beach personal injury lawyer will also learn the value of your case. Before approaching the insurance company, you must know how much to ask for in a settlement. The same thing goes when you are seeking damages in court.

Without an attorney, you will have no idea what your case is worth because you may be unfamiliar with basic concepts such as how much your pain and suffering damages are worth.

Once you know what you deserve, your attorney will negotiate compensation with the insurance company or fight for it in court.

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Waiting Too Long to Hire a Lawyer Can Harm Your Case

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Since there is little doubt that you need an attorney, the question is when is the best time to hire one. If you wait too long, your case can become clouded, making it far more challenging to investigate the accident. The insurance company may trick and run roughshod over you before you know the difference.

After you have suffered an injury, you should hire an attorney as soon as possible. Even if your injuries have not entirely incapacitated you, your plate is more than full. If you are seeking a personal injury attorney, chances are that you have suffered physical injuries that are making your life more difficult.

Your injuries may have hospitalized you or taken you off your feet while you attempt a full recovery from your injuries. Either way, the last thing you can do is work on the legal process in your case.

Still, the legal process does not pause while you recover from your injuries. The problem is that you must gather evidence from the accident, but you only have a limited time.

If you wait too long, witnesses can become more challenging to locate, and when you do find them, their recollections may not be fresh enough for them to be credible and persuasive.

The more you delay, the less likely you will have the testimony you need to prove your case, as witnesses are the most valuable source of evidence.

There is other physical evidence that you can lose very quickly. For example, there may be valuable clues about liability at the accident scene. Police and road crews may clear the scene right after the crash, but you can lose helpful evidence in the days afterward if you do not immediately move to collect it.

Lawyers may not take your case if you approach them months later because they know they can do little to establish liability at that point.

The Insurance Company Will Work to Undercut Your Claim

Against this backdrop, you are dealing with an insurance company that wants to do everything possible to thwart your claim. Your success is not good for insurance companies because they must pay you money from their accounts.

Your payment comes from the insurance companies' earnings; they want to make as much money as possible.

Insurance companies think nothing of piling on and taking advantage of you when you suffer an injury. Chances are that they may already have called you, acting like your friend to get you talking.

They want you on the record because they can use whatever you say to undermine your claim. Speaking to the insurance company is never a good idea, but you may not know this without a lawyer. 

Sometimes, insurance companies may use a different tactic and try to dangle money in front of you to reach a quick settlement agreement. They may want your signature on the dotted line because they know you cannot ask for more compensation after you sign.

If you take the insurance company's money at this stage, you may never know how much you can have gotten for your injuries. You can rest assured that insurance companies know the exact value of your case because they have the infrastructure to evaluate claims immediately.

You need to speak with a lawyer to keep you from accepting anything from the insurance company that involves you signing away your rights.

It Takes Time to Get Money, So Start Trying Now

It takes considerable time to deposit any settlement check into your account. In some cases, it may even take years, and delaying the start of the legal process can push back the timeline even further.

The legal process can only begin once you hire a personal injury lawyer for your case. There is a large amount of legwork that must occur before you can be in a position to file your claim or lawsuit.

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The following must happen:

  • Your lawyer will gather evidence so you have enough proof to persuade the insurance company to accept liability for your claim. This can require a police report, witness statements, surveillance video, expert opinions, and more. 
  • Your lawyer can review documentation, medical records, and work with expert witnesses to assess how much you deserve in damages.
  • You will need to continue with your treatments and reach the point of maximum medical improvement, which is when further medical care will not improve your condition. Knowing the full extent of your injuries and prognosis may take weeks or months. 

The personal injury process takes long enough; the last thing you want to do is introduce more delays into your case by waiting to hire a lawyer. A skilled attorney will assess the full extent of your injuries and work to secure the compensation needed to cover your medical bills, ongoing treatment, and other related expenses.

Getting a Personal Injury Lawyer Now Provides Peace of Mind

Hiring an attorney now also gives you confidence that you have someone to cover the legal process. Without an attorney, you will deal with extreme stress during an already difficult time for you.

The last thing that you need is anything that can make your life harder than it already is. There is little time to handle day-to-day details. Even if you tried, you would run up against the brick wall known as the insurance company. 

You need to know that you have a fighter in your corner who will stand up for you against the insurance company. You stand little chance of countering insurance companies alone.

Hiring a lawyer takes the burden from your shoulders, and you can be confident that you have someone who can protect you from the tactics the insurance company will use against you.

The Statute of Limitations Is Running in the Background

The statute of limitations sets the deadline to file a claim or lawsuit. Each state has this law that gives you a firm deadline on when you can sue. Once that deadline passes, you no longer have the legal right to financial compensation.

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Nothing suggests you should take all the time under the statute of limitations to file your case. Some lawsuits get filed days before the statute of limitations expires. Still, these cases are only brought to court after a lawyer has extensively investigated the incident and potentially tried to negotiate a settlement agreement.

If you wait until close to the statute of limitations to hire a personal injury lawyer, you stand very little chance of ever getting any compensation for your injuries.

You may not even find a lawyer who will take your case because they know you will not receive money, so they will not get paid. You must file a claim as soon as your lawyer advises you to.

Hiring a Lawyer Begins with a Free Consultation

When you contact a lawyer, you will speak with them during your initial consultation. It costs you nothing to talk to an attorney and ask your questions.

At the same time, you are also determining whether you want to hire a lawyer for your case. Who you trust with your case is a highly critical decision, and it is one that you do not take lightly. While it may take little time to find and speak with a lawyer, you must make your determination very carefully.

Consider speaking with multiple lawyers if it will not slow your case down considerably.

It often helps to talk to several lawyers to both gain more perspective about your case and see the contrast in styles between attorneys. Then, you can be more confident that you have hired the right person for your case. The first step is yours; all it takes is a phone call or two.

Have Someone Call a Personal Injury Lawyer if You Cannot Contact Them Yourself

Immediately calling an attorney is essential during the personal injury process. Between the timeline and the insurance company's maneuverings, you cannot control many things. You should do what is in your power to move the case forward. The attorney will need some minimum basic details, but they will move your case forward to the best of their ability.

If you cannot call an attorney, have a trusted family member do it. You cannot wait to fully recover to deal with the legal process because it can be too late.

Personal injury lawyers make it as easy as possible for you to begin the legal process. You do not have to worry about getting into your car and traveling to an attorney's office to meet with them.

Personal injury lawyers can meet you virtually via telephone or videoconference. If necessary, the lawyer will come wherever you are to see you, including to your hospital bed. Accessibility is not an obstacle between you and the legal representation you need.

Finances Should Not Keep You from Getting a Personal Injury Attorney

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Money is the other thing that is not an obstacle between you and an attorney. Personal injury attorneys understand that many accident victims may not have the financial resources to pay for legal services out of pocket, and a contingency fee allows them to provide their experience and support to those who need it most.

Whether they get paid at all depends on winning your case by receiving a settlement or a jury award. The contingency fee system means you do not need to come up with any money upfront to hire an attorney.

You can get legal help in exchange for your signature on a representation agreement that promises to pay your lawyer if and when you win your case. Thus, you do not have any financial risk when you retain an attorney for your case.

Also, since your lawyer only gets paid if they win, they want to achieve the best possible outcome for you. This arrangement can motivate them to work diligently on your case, conducting thorough investigations, gathering evidence, and negotiating with insurance companies or opposing parties to secure a favorable settlement or verdict.

By working on a contingency fee basis and offering free consultations, personal injury lawyers ensure that access to justice is available to everyone, regardless of their financial situation.

So, if you have suffered an injury due to someone else's negligence, don't let the fear of costs hold you back from seeking the legal representation you deserve. 

Hiring a personal injury lawyer can help you navigate the complex legal process, protect your rights, and maximize your compensation without costing you anything out of pocket.

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