The short answer to this question is: yes, you can handle your own car accident case. But there are many, many reasons why you may not want to, not the least of which is that you’ll probably get greater compensation for your injuries if you hire an experienced personal injury attorney like those here at Parker & Lazzara.
If you’ve been in an accident and sustained injuries due to someone else’s negligence, you know how quickly your life can change. All it takes is an instant for things to go badly, and all of a sudden, you’re injured, your car is damaged or possibly even totaled, and your life is never going to be the same. Or at least that’s how it feels at the time.
It doesn’t even matter what the reason for the accident was – someone else was negligent while driving, and now you’re paying the price for it. The harsh reality is that you’re in pain, wondering how you’re going to pay for everything, and wondering when you’re going to be able to get back to work. You’ve suffered lost wages from not being able to work both now and in the future, mounting medical bills for treatments, minor or major medical procedures or surgeries, possible emergency room visits, ambulance fees, and property damage to your vehicle. All of this is creating an enormous amount of stress in your life, as you wonder how you’re going to take care of your family with all of this going on.
Like we’ve said, you could handle your own case. But be aware that the insurance companies you’ll be dealing with have teams of attorneys on their side – all trained and experienced in making sure people like you get paid as little compensation as possible. See, insurance companies are in the business of making money. The less they pay out in insurance claims, the more money stays in the business. That means you’ll be up against powerful, knowledgeable lawyers who have been through this dozens – maybe hundreds of times before!
On the other hand, if you hire an experienced personal injury attorney to represent you, they will be well-versed in all the car accident laws that pertain to your case. They’ll be able to properly evaluate your unique situation and the facts surrounding the accident that caused your injuries to give you a reasoned opinion on what your case is worth.
An attorney will be able to collect all the evidence you need to prove negligence…police reports, witness statements, medical records, and photographs. They’ll ask you important questions that will help them defend your case against the negligent driver’s insurance company. This evidence is extremely important in helping you to obtain all the compensation that you are entitled to for your damages, and your attorney will observe all of the evidence in the case to get the most money for you that they can.
There’s a lot to know about attempting to defend your case against the opposing insurance company. There are people you should communicate with, and those you should not talk to. There are things you should say, and things you shouldn’t say. If your case goes to court, there will be many various forms to fill out and very specific administrative and court procedures to follow. If these procedures are not followed to the letter, your case could easily get thrown out of court.
If you get overwhelmed with the process, an attorney at Parker & Lazzara will be there to explain how the legal process works, and answer the many questions you have regarding the compensation you’re entitled to, and when you’ll receive it. This can help alleviate an enormous amount of stress in your life so that you can focus on healing the physical and psychological wounds you suffered in the accident.
One of the distinct advantages of hiring an attorney instead of attempting to defend your own case is that, once you have found the attorney you want to work with, it becomes relatively hands-off for you. They do the paperwork. They take care of negotiations with the insurance company for your compensation. And if a suitable settlement can’t be reached, they will deal with all of the court procedures and litigation of your case. And they will do all of this because it’s what they do for a living. You wouldn’t ask your hairstylist to fix your car, would you? Your attorney does what he or she does so well because that’s all they do.
And you won’t have to pay a personal injury attorney out of your own pocket. That’s right – not one penny. Personal injury attorneys work on what is called a contingency basis. This means that they are paid out of the compensation that they can secure for you. It’s usually a percentage – around one-third, or 33% – and after they’re paid, the rest of the money is yours as compensation for the damages you’ve suffered. As an example, let’s say that your attorney negotiates a settlement with the insurance company representing the negligent driver in the accident that caused your injuries. Your attorney is able to secure $200,000 in damages for you. First, you’ll pay the attorney their 33%, or $66,000. The rest of the money, or $134,000, is then yours to keep.
Because your attorney will get paid based on the amount they are able to get for you, it’s in their best interest to fight for as much money as possible. When you get paid, they get paid, so it’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.
So before you decide to take on big insurance companies, and their highly-trained attorneys, contact Parker & Lazzara and let us evaluate your case. You’ll probably find that it’s easier, much less stressful, and more lucrative to hire a qualified, experienced attorney to fight for the compensation you deserve for your injuries and property damage. Let Parker & Lazzara handle your case so that you can spend your time recovering properly from your injuries. You can contact us at (480) 456-3080, or online on our contact page.