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Did you know the CDC reports that every year 3 million people suffer from accidents and injuries? With those statistics, the chances are high that you will experience a car crash of varying magnitude in your life.
That is why you must prepare yourself ahead of time, so you know what steps to follow. Many people juggle between handling the case on themselves or hiring an accident attorney.
Does that sound like you? If so, keep reading this post to learn about when you should hire a Houston car accident lawyer and ensure you receive compensation.
The Other Driver Blames You for the Accident
Texas is a comparative fault law state. That means that each party can sue the other for a percentage of fault in the accident. If this happens, a court will obtain the responsibility of determining your percentage of fault.
As a result, they will ask you to pay that amount as compensation to the other party. That is where car accident lawyers come into play.
If you do not know how to navigate around comparative fault laws, you might end up paying for an accident you did not cause. A lawyer can assess whether you are partially to blame or not.
If you had nothing to do with the accident, they should protect you against wrongful blame. They will also help switch the focus on the other party.
You Suffer Injuries
Another sign that it is time to hire a lawyer is whether you suffer injuries or damages due to the accident. Collisions that happen even 10 miles per hour can cause critical damage to our bodies. Some of the most common physical injuries from car accidents include things like:
- Bone fractures
- Internal bleeding
- Broken ribs
You might also suffer from whiplash. That is when our heads and neck snap back and forth like a whip upon impact.
That quick motion is enough to injure our first cervical vertebrae that connect our spines to the base of our neck. You should also note that just because you don’t experience pain right off the bat doesn’t mean there are no injuries; whiplash symptoms can take days to weeks to show.
The best thing to do is visit a doctor immediately following the accident. Anything that affects your quality of life is an injury worth suing over.
Depending on your state’s laws, you can request that the party at fault pay for your medical expenses. They might also have to pay your hospital bills if you require hospitalization.
You should also keep in mind that physical injuries are not the only damage done to your body. You might also experience mental trauma, like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
Once again, this is something that affects the way you live your life. People with PTSD from car accidents often have trouble even sitting in a car. Some are too afraid to drive, while the thought of driving is enough to send something into a panic attack.
You should pay attention to see if you exhibit any signs of PTSD. And just because you do not exhibit symptoms right away does not mean you do not have PTSD. Much like whiplash, this disorder can take up to 30 days to arise.
Along with physical damages, you can also sue for damage to your property. After an accident, you should take photos of everything affected, including items inside of your car.
You can give these to your attorney so they can demand compensation from the other party. You might end up receiving payments for auto repairs. The other party may also have to pay for irreplaceable items lost in the accident.
You Have to Speak With the Insurance Company
You know it is time to call an accident lawyer when you start receiving calls from insurance companies. That is not something you want to try and handle on your own.
For starters, the first thing the other person’s insurance company will do is call you and offer a settlement right away. People who don’t hire an attorney think that this is a good option.
However, that settlement is usually the lowest amount possible. You see, the insurance providers want to pay you off soon as possible to keep you from filing a lawsuit.
However, if you hire an accident attorney, your settlement offer could be much higher. After all, these professionals handle settlement negotiations every day of their work lives. They know what to look out for and what is a fair deal.
You Don’t Understand the State Laws
Another asset of hiring a lawyer is that they know their laws. For example, car accident victims in California are prohibited by Proposition 213 from receiving compensation for their pain and suffering if they were uninsured at the time they were driving. Yes, you have your phone and can look up general definitions. But an attorney went to school to learn about things like tort laws and damages. Plus, they handle them on a day-to-day basis.
A good accident attorney will tell you whether your case is civil or criminal. They will also negotiate for the different types of damages. For instance, there are general damages.
That means any injuries sustained on your person. Some damages are more difficult to prove, like PTSD. Because of that, an expert would be to your benefit.
If you do it yourself, you may not have the criteria to prove your injuries. There are also several other laws at your disposal. A lawyer can look at your case and tell you whether you are eligible to sue for Dram shop or social host laws.
Your lawyer might also suggest that you look into an LLC. If someone causes a crash while they are on the job for work, you can take out a specialized lawsuit against them. You can see the answer to the question “how long does it take to get a LLC?” here.
For More Car Accident Lawyer and Law Tips
As you can tell, several instances would warrant hiring a professional. An attorney knows all of the laws and statutes that would allow you to take out a lawsuit. They also know how to negotiate with insurance companies, so they don’t cheat you on compensation. A truck accident lawyer can handle all the aspects you need. Such as identify the liable party, collect evidence, interview eyewitnesses, talk with the insurance company, and finally take the case trail if need.
We hope this article helps you understand when it is time to hire a car accident lawyer. After a car crash, make sure you do not wait to call a lawyer and let them know your situation.
They will be more than willing to help you out. If you enjoyed this article and want more law and business tips, check out our blog today!