When to Hire an Attorney After a Car Accident
After a car accident in Georgia, an injured driver may consider filing a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver to recoup his or her medical expenses, property damage, and other losses. Many people do not have the legal experience to successfully represent their own interests in court but are concerned about paying exorbitant legal fees. Anyone wondering whether to hire an Atlanta car accident lawyer should consider the clarity of liability in the case.
Clarity of Liability
Clarity of liability is a legal concept pertaining to how obvious the fault in a case is. In the best circumstances, the at-fault party will acknowledge their fault or the evidence available will clearly implicate the at-fault party beyond any reasonable doubt. In a very clear-cut case with no extenuating circumstances, a plaintiff may successfully reach a settlement without an attorney’s help. However, when a plaintiff’s losses are significant, involve extended recovery time, lead to a large amount of lost income, or involve multiple parties, a car accident attorney will eliminate uncertainty and help plaintiffs reach desirable conclusions in their cases.
Anyone considering whether to hire an attorney after a car accident should ask themselves a few questions about their cases:
- How clear is the fault in the case? Did the plaintiff admit to or acknowledge his or her fault?
- Do you have an accurate idea of how much your claim is worth?
- Do you feel comfortable representing your interests in court and negotiating a settlement on your own behalf?
If the answer to any of these questions is “no,” then you should meet with an Atlanta personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Even in very clear-cut cases, plaintiffs may simply miss avenues of compensation because they did not think to look or did not have the experience to refer to past cases of a similar nature. A car accident lawyer will be able to assess the facts of a case and help his or her client reach a successful conclusion.
When to Hire a Lawyer
If there is any dispute over liability or the circumstances surrounding the accident are complicated and require specialized, expert investigation, hiring an attorney is the prudent choice. Insurance issues often accompany liability disputes, and claims adjusters look for any reason to deny claims or to avoid paying out the full claim amount. An injured plaintiff with a small degree of fault in a case may unexpectedly lead to a denied claim or other complications. Finally, successfully managing a lawsuit on your own behalf means ensuring your lawsuit meets your state’s statute of limitations for personal injury claims and adhering to the court’s deadlines for filing documents and certain trial motions.
Ultimately, it’s a wise choice to consult with an attorney as soon as possible following a car accident, even if the fault is abundantly clear. A good attorney will be able to help you avoid issues that can damage your chances in court and enhance your chances of receiving fair compensation for your damages. As soon as you have addressed your immediate medical concerns, it is time to deal with the financial aspects of your injuries by hiring an experienced attorney.