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In the days following a collision between your vehicle and another, you may be wondering whether you might need to hire a car accident attorney. It's helpful to understand what circumstances justify seeking counsel before getting too involved with filing a claim.
Was Anyone Injured?
The foremost issue in any case is whether or not anybody was injured as a result of the accident, as medical expenses are the most likely things in an incident to lead to major costs. For most situations, the insurance carriers should have no trouble taking care of issues involving damage to the vehicles. In some cases, it might be imagined that an incident involving an uninsured driver and no injuries may be worth pursuing a claim, such as a high-end car being wrecked, but generally, the expense of paying an attorney is going to eat up too much of your compensation to justify retaining counsel.
If you're not sure about any possible injuries, it's wise to have a doctor check you and your passengers out as soon as possible following an accident. X-rays should be performed, and any potential issues, such as headaches or neck pain, should be documented. Even if you don't expect to file a claim, keeping a daily journal of how you feel following an accident can be beneficial. Should you eventually hire an auto accident attorney, this can help document your suffering.
How Much Time Is Left?
In the state of Washington, for example, the statutory limit on seeking injury compensation is three years. The clock starts from the time of the incident that left you injured, so you don't need to race to get paperwork filed right away. This requirement is satisfied once you provide the insurance carrier and alleged responsible parties with formal notification of your intent to sue. If you have doubts, ask a lawyer for a consultation.
Is the Insurance Company's Offer Fair?
When insurance companies try to sort cases out, they typically work from data tables that outline settlements they can live with. Whether you might be comfortable with an offered settlement is quite the other question. If you're unsure how much you might incur in the way of medical bills, it may be to your benefit to hold off until you have a clearer idea of what your long-term outlook will be. Know that once you accept compensation there's no chance to get more.
Speak with a car accident attorney for more information.Share
6 November 2018