When to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
The state of California has experienced close to 200,000 car crashes that resulted in injuries. If you live in or around the Costa Mesa area, you need to understand the importance of preparing yourself in the event of a car accident. Seeking legal representation is not only helpful but doing so will protect your rights. If you’ve been involved in a crash, here is how to determine if help from a personal injury attorney is necessary for your case.
Injuries Are Severe
A personal injury lawyer is essential if you have significant injuries. If you only have vehicle damage, it’s typically an issue that you can resolve with the auto insurance company.
Mild injuries that don’t require medical treatment might also not need legal representation. However, if you have severe injuries that are expensive and that require a long healing timetable, never pursue the case without the help of legal professionals. Here are some of the severe injuries that require legal help:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones and lacerations
- Neck and back injuries
- Loss of limb
- Internal bleeding or damage to organs
- Blindness, deafness, and severe burn injuries
These injuries rack up costly medical bills and long-term recovery. It’s not fair for the cost of medical treatment to fall on car accident victims. Unfortunately, this often occurs without the help of an experienced personal injury attorney.
The Other Party Is Denying Fault or Liability
There’s never a guarantee that the other party in a personal injury case will accept fault. Proving negligence sets the tone for any personal injury case.
California is a comparative negligence state. This means that the courts consider the potential of shared fault between plaintiffs and defendants when deciding judgment. If a plaintiff is partially at fault, they can still be awarded monetary damages, but the dollar amount will be limited based on the amount they are deemed at fault.
For instance, if your damages amount to $100,000 but you’re deemed 10% responsible, you’ll receive a $90,000 payout.
There’s also a possibility that the defendant denies fault completely. The expertise of a personal injury lawyer will be valuable in this instance, to make sure that they’re held responsible and you get paid what you deserve.
There Are Complex Circumstances
Personal injury is the largest area of law, and also the most potentially complex. In California, car accidents need to be settled or finalized within 2 years, so it’s best to hash out the complicated details as early as possible. Here are some of the complex details that a lawyer might need to figure out to prove your case:
- Damages to your vehicle and the cost to repair or replace it
- Rate of speed, weather conditions, and other details
- Pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and mental anguish
- Payments for the time and hours that you miss from work
- Compensation for any long-term or lifelong expenses
One car accident can leave you with a host of damages, and personal injury lawyers are the best equipped to assist you.
A Large Settlement Is Owed
If you’ve been in a vehicle accident, the situation will end in a settlement rather than in court the vast majority of the time. You only get one chance to negotiate the ideal dollar amount.
If it’s a large settlement on the line, you’ll need the assistance of lawyers that are accustomed to negotiating settlements. They should have proven experience with these negotiations, so make sure to explore previous cases that they have dealt with.
Settlements often involve a combination of trying to get the top dollar amount and expediting the amount of time it takes to get paid.
You Suffered a Disability or Long-Term Injury
You might not immediately understand the timetable for healing from your injuries. There are also situations where your life won’t be the same again due to the nature of your injuries.
If your case involves long-term injury or disability, you’ll definitely need the help of a lawyer. This goes far beyond the initial injury payments and extends into receiving payments to take care of your long-term health. You might need physical therapy, rehabilitation, or extensive long-term medical care.
It takes a skilled lawyer to nail down these details so that you’re covered for as long as you need care.
There Are Multiple Parties Involved
Finally, make sure to hire the help of personal injury attorneys in California when there is potentially more than one party to blame. This can mean more than one driver, a driver and the insurance company, the city where the accident took place, and other potential defendants.
You’ll need a lawyer to establish standards of care, negligence, and other details. Trying to nail down these details on your own can prove confusing, and you might miss out on the maximum damages you can recoup.
Regardless, make sure that you explore your resources once you decide you need an attorney. Find out your lawyer’s contingency fee, and hire them as early as possible to give them enough time to represent you.
Hire a Quality Personal Injury Attorney
At Mesa Accident Attorneys, we specialize in car accident cases. We provide results, affordable solutions, and easy communication. Contact us for 24/7 chat support or schedule a free consultation with our Costa Mesa law firm today.