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Motor Vehicle Accidents

When to Hire a Lawyer after a Car Accident

August 27, 2014

If you were injured in a car accident, you may be wondering whether you should hire a lawyer or not. The following are some things to consider when deciding to hire a car accident lawyer or handle an auto accident claim on your own:

  • Did you get, or are you getting, the medical treatment you need? If you are having trouble getting the medical treatment that you need, a personal injury lawyer may be able to refer you to a doctor familiar with car accident injuries.
  • Do you understand your rights? Tort laws – including negligence standards in auto accidents – can be confusing and difficult to understand. Additionally, auto accidents often involve complex issues of comparative negligence. A personal injury lawyer can help you understand the applicable laws, as well as your legal rights and options, so that you can make an informed decision about how to proceed.
  • Is the insurance company difficult to deal with? Insurance companies cannot protect your legal rights the way that a lawyer can. Moreover, insurance companies are in business to make money so they often want to settlement claims quickly and for as little money as possible. A car accident lawyer can advocate on your behalf and fight to get you maximum money damages. Additionally, an auto accident lawyer can communicate on your behalf with the insurance companies.
  • Do you plan to file a lawsuit? Insurance settlements don’t always adequately compensation an injured party and, in these situations, a personal injury lawsuit may be necessary. Insurance settlements don’t include amounts for future medical expenses and future lost wages; rather, they take into account the medical expenses and lost wages incurred as of the date the settlement offer is made. Accordingly, a car accident lawsuit may be necessary to get adequate money damages. If you plan to file a lawsuit, you will want to seek the help of a personal injury lawyer so that you don’t miss filing deadlines and you ensure procedural requirements are met.
  • Were multiples parties responsible? An insurance settlement will only settle claims with one negligent party, but a personal injury lawsuit can resolve claims with multiple responsible parties. For instance, if you were involved in a multi-vehicle accident, you can name all negligent motorists in a single lawsuit so that issues of comparative negligence and joint liability are resolved in the lawsuit.
  • Do you know the statutes of limitations? Personal injury lawsuits must be filed within an applicable period of time. If the statute of limitations passes, you will forfeit your right to bring a legal action against the negligent party. A personal injury lawyer can advise you of the applicable statute of limitations, and file your complaint in a timely manner.

Contact a Car Accident Lawyer

If you have been in a car accident and are considering whether you should hire a lawyer, do not hesitate to contact our office at (312) 477-2500 to schedule a free consultation with a one of our Chicago auto accident lawyers. After listening to your situation, we will advise you of your rights and options so that you make an informed decision about whether to hire a personal injury lawyer.

For more information:

If you have been injured in a personal injury or medical malpractice accident, do not hesitate to contact the Chicago accident and injury law firm of Cogan & Power at (312) 477-2500 to schedule a free case consultation, so that we can help you begin the process of recovery as soon as possible. If you cannot come to our offices in downtown Chicago, we will come to you. And because we take cases on a contingency basis, you will not pay any fee unless we get you compensation.