So, you’ve just been hurt in an accident, and someone else is to blame. You’re likely still reeling from the events that transpired, and you probably have a lot of questions. One of the most common things you may be wondering is whether or not you should hire a lawyer. Here are three signs that a personal injury lawyer is a good idea.
You’re looking for a settlement
If you’re looking for a settlement, it’s much easier to get one if you have legal help on your side. The average personal injury settlement is about $50,000, with settlements ranging anywhere from $3,000 to $75,000. While it may be tempting to pursue your case out of court, or to represent yourself in your case, the best way to get a settlement is by using a lawyer with a reputation for winning cases. More than 90 percent of personal injury cases are settled before a trial, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t need a lawyer to settle. Especially when your case is high stakes, such as a major car accident or workplace injury, it’s best to have a lawyer help you navigate what can become the sometimes lengthy settlement process. Your defendant will likely be lawyering up in such a case, meaning that you’ll be on unequal footing without legal assistance at your side. Plus, if you’ve hired a reputable personal injury lawyer, it’s unlikely they will make you pay if you don’t win your case.
You need experience on your side
When it comes to personal injury cases, experience is important. Personal injury law can be complicated, and experience can be a major boon to your case, especially if you are trying to prove something like negligence or are looking to substantiate a tort. A trustworthy personal injury lawyer can help you establish burden of proof, determine what constitutes damages, and even help you define aspects of the case beyond economic settlements like pain and suffering. Each of these concepts requires a firm understanding of the ins and outs of personal injury law, and you need someone with experience to do this. You wouldn’t try to perform surgery on yourself without medical knowledge, so why would you try to represent yourself in your personal injury case?
You need an objective opinion
When you’ve sustained an injury and paid thousands of dollars for medical treatment, it can be hard to get an objective opinion about your case. Seeking legal counsel before pressing charges is the ideal way to do this, and can help you determine a possible settlement value. A knowledgeable personal injury lawyer will sit down with you and review the facts of your case and any evidence that may have been filed — such as a police report — to help you determine the best course of action. This can be particularly important when you and the defendant are the only two witnesses of the accident in question. Then, if you decide to press charges, your lawyer will be able to represent you during all elements of negotiation. Having that objectivity on your side during particularly emotional cases can be the difference between winning or losing your case.
Personal injury cases can be a slippery slope, with many variables and components to manage. These factors make it important to find a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer if you’re considering pressing charges. When you want to have an objective opinion about your case, and are looking for a settlement, seeking legal counsel from an experienced attorney is the best course of action. When you do, you’re far more likely to find success in your case.