If you’re involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you sustained injuries, it’s possible that a claim representative from the at-fault person’s company may contact you immediately afterwards and try to settle your claim. Be careful dealing with the insurance company on your own, because you may need an experienced personal injury attorney to help you. one risk of settling your claim shortly after an accident is you might later find out that your injuries are more serious than you thought when the claim was settled.
There are limited situations in which a person should handle their own personal injury claim. Although it is possible when the injuries sustained are minimal, the other party involved is clearly liable, and if the insurance company has already paid the medical bills, it is ill advised to handle this situation without representation. There are many other factors that would make hiring a Los Angeles personal injury attorney a vital decision.
For example, a person should get an attorney involved when injuries are long lasting and are not improving, or if it is not clear when it comes to labeling who is at fault. When a claim is handled without the aid of a personal injury lawyer, the property damage may not be handled well, and the case can settle before the full extent of the injuries are discovered. A case might be settled, and six months later, it is discovered that the injury will require more medical attention, incurring more expenses for the victim.
Other Risks of Not Contacting an Attorney
Another risk involved with trying to handle a claim without an attorney includes misunderstanding the law. In California, the Motor Vehicle Reparations Act (MVRA) is a law that is enforced. It is a very difficult law to understand and covers issues such as who pays the medical bills. Without an attorney, it is difficult to understand how to conduct oneself in a lawfully beneficial way during a recorded conversation conducted by an insurance company. People often make a statement inadvertently that was innocent in nature, but ends up damaging their case. A personal injury lawyer is there to protect their clients’ interests, and to get them through all of the dangerous aspects of California laws that are risky to handle otherwise. Being under compensated in a personal injury claim creates a situation that can disrupt the life of any individual, and that is the major risk of handling a claim without representation.
Benefits of Legal Representation
Right after an accident, it is common for people to be in shock and think that they are uninjured. It is possible to be unaware of what is going on in the spine for example, or other parts of the body at the time. It is imperative to get the appropriate medical treatment first, and then to hire an experienced injury lawyer that can effectively handle the insurance company on the behalf of their client in order to make sure that they provide the full amount of compensation for the medical procedures.
It is beneficial to hire an attorney for a wide variety of other reasons. Having a lawyer reduces the risk of settling a case too early for an undesirable amount. As previously mentioned, it is quite possible to discover that the injuries sustained are far more severe than that of their original diagnosis. A lawyer will be there to also advise their client on where to get treatment and what kind of doctors to see.
Overall, having your claim handled by an attorney is a wise decision. They are there to make sure that their client is fully taken care of during their time of need.
Why to Call Immediately
The state of California has a statute of limitations. The deadline for when a claim can be handled will vary depending on the nature of the personal injury case. For example, slipping and falling, sustaining an injury at someone else’s home and it is the home owner’s fault, wrongful death matters, and medical negligence claims all have to be submitted within a year. If injured while travelling on a city sidewalk or road owned and maintained by the city, the deadline to activate a claim is within 90 days. When injured during a car accident, the statute of limitations can require a claim to be filed within two years.
If one does not abide by the statute of limitations, the ensuing consequence would be great in regards to being fully compensated. Waiting to call an attorney even a few weeks prior to the deadline can prove to be problematic. The process of preparing for a lawsuit can take weeks due to the substantial amount of evidence that needs to be reviewed. Do not fall victim to having missed the opportunity of acquiring what is lawfully owed to fully compensate a personal injury.
McElfish Law Firm can help you navigate through the claims process and avoid losing money which you may be entitled to but unable to obtain from the insurance company if you are unrepresented. Before going up against the insurance company alone, ask yourself: “Am I prepared and knowledgeable enough to handle this on my own without an attorney?” Of course, the extent of your injuries and the effect on your health and activities is important also. The more serious your case is, and the more you have at risk, the more you have to lose. What you need to determine is simply this: “Am I going to come out better or worse with an attorney?”
Attorneys at McElfish Law Firm can help you answer that question. Call us today for a free case evaluation 310.659.4900.
Disclaimer: The information in this blog post is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from McElfish Law Firm or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.