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9 Reasons to Consult with an Attorney After an Accident

When you get in an accident, a lawsuit may be the last thing on your mind. Vehicles may be damaged and you, a passenger, and/or a stranger may be injured. The accident may have been small, and you left the scene primarily worried about getting to work on time—or the accident was devastating, even fatal. Whether you have been involved in a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or other accident, you have the right to pursue action against those whose negligent behavior was the cause of your accident. In any case, the idea of ending up in a courtroom may seem like an unnecessary obstacle that intensifies your stress rather than reducing it.

But conferring with an attorney can provide much-needed relief for a variety of reasons, even if you never end up filing a claim or going to court. Furthermore, it is vital that this consultation happens as soon as possible, before settling your claim or even speaking with your insurer.

Here are 9 reasons to seek legal counsel from a skilled attorney immediately after an accident.

  1. You are subject to time-sensitive procedures. In California, the statute of limitations requires plaintiffs to file personal injury lawsuits within two years of the event or discovering the injury. If you are suing for damage to a vehicle, you have three years. While this may at first seem like ample time, waiting longer than necessary is not worth the risk of permanently losing your ability to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, property damage, or pain and suffering.
  2. What you say to your insurer now could irrevocably affect the value of your claim. Your insurer may be responsible for covering some or all of your medical costs. They will likely ask for your bills and promise to take care of you. As a business, however, they may be highly motivated to reduce your claim. They could use a variety of tactics to do this, and a skilled attorney can help you avoid these traps and hold your insurer accountable in a case of bad faith.
  3. Other parties involved in the accident may employ their own lawyers. You might walk away from the accident believing you and the other parties are on the same page and no one intends to file a lawsuit, but you can never know this for sure. Seeking an attorney of your own will help protect you from future accusations.
  4. Settling your claim now will close it permanently. Settling your claim immediately may be tempting, especially if you need the money as soon as possible to cover medical expenses or lost wages. But settling your claim will permanently waive your right to file a lawsuit later. If you settle without speaking with an attorney, you will never be able to recover additional compensation, even if you are entitled to it. Seek the legal counsel of a skilled lawyer to ensure you are getting as much as you can from your settlement.
  5. Filing a lawsuit is an extensive and complex procedure. Making a single mistake can jeopardize your access to rightful compensation. An attorney with years of experience will help you avoid error and ensure your claim is filed with meticulous attention to detail.
  6. Proving fault can be highly challenging. If the liable party has their own attorney, this task becomes even more difficult. Attempting to handle it on your own may lower the likelihood of achieving a fair resolution and the compensation you deserve.
  7. An attorney will help you determine which damages you are eligible to collect. You have a wide variety of options when filing a claim, including suing a liable party for future expected medical costs, lost wages, reduced earning capacity, pain and suffering, and punitive damages. An experienced law firm can distinguish the subtle differences between each of these cases and advise you accordingly.
  8. With proper legal support, you may be able to avoid the courtroom. If your goal is to skip the hassle of the trial, a lawyer can help you successfully negotiate with other parties to avoid the courtroom without compromising your settlement.
  9. Peace of mind. You have enough to worry about without navigating the legal system on your own. A compassionate and experienced attorney can relieve you of the stress of legal complications so you can focus on your recovery. You can also rest easy knowing a professional has thoroughly examined every aspect of your case, leaving no stone unturned.

While it is always generally advisable to contact an attorney after an accident (even if you feel you can file the claim on your own), certain factors shift the consultation from generally advisable to crucial.

Contact an attorney immediately if:

  • The accident caused injury or death
  • Parties disagree regarding who is at fault
  • Multiple parties were involved (e.g. pedestrians or additional cars)
  • The accident was in a construction area
  • The police report was not accurately written
  • You have no insurance, or the policy you have is insufficient
  • Your insurer is unhelpful, seems to be acting in bad faith, or has hired their own attorney
  • You need advisement about your rights, the terms of your policy, or the value of your claim

Get in Touch with Our Skilled Legal Team Today

The best time to contact a lawyer is immediately after the accident. Whether you are filing a lawsuit or simply need help understanding your rights, The Law Offices of Caroline J. Nasseri is here to help. We provide legal support and representation for clients throughout California, and with 25 years of experience, we are more than prepared to take on your case.

Call (408) 912-2217">(408) 912-2217 or schedule your consultation online to begin building your case with Attorney Nasseri.