When you are in an auto accident, regardless of who caused the accident or what your injuries are, it is important to see a lawyer as soon as possible. This will help to ensure your legal rights are protected. It will also provide you with needed guidance on what to do next. This can include whether or not to file a personal injury lawsuit and what type of compensation you are entitled to. The following are eight signs that you need to speak with a lawyer after an auto accident.
1. Your car is a total loss or needs repairs that you can’t afford or exceed your insurance policy. This means you are entitled to compensation from the at-fault driver and their insurance company. They may be able to help with any necessary repairs or payments for additional car insurance coverage for your vehicle and financial aid through the state’s FMAP program.
2. You receive a ticket for a moving violation (such as speeding) during the accident. While you may have been at fault for the accident, in some jurisdictions, if one driver is issued a ticket shortly after an accident, the other driver can be held liable for personal injury damages based on negligence, even if they didn’t commit an overt act that caused the crash.
3. The at-fault driver or insurance company attempts to pay you to “go away and not cause any trouble.” While it may be tempting to take them up on such an offer, it is highly recommended that you do not do this based on legal grounds alone.
4. You have not received any information regarding who, if anyone, is at fault for the accident. In some cases, you may have been wrongly accused of causing an accident without truly committing any wrongdoing. If you do not receive the truth from those involved in an accident and cannot find out what happened, you could be vulnerable to fraud or coercion when trying to collect compensation for an auto injury.
5. You are not sure what injuries you sustained. Deciding whether or not you should file a personal injury lawsuit is easier when a doctor has diagnosed your injuries. It can also make your legal case stronger as too much time can elapse between an initial injury and the time of filing a personal injury claim.
6. You received notice from the insurance company for the at-fault driver stating that they will not be covering any damages due to their fault in causing the accident. Even if this amount is less than what you believe you’re entitled to, it can make it more difficult for you to receive financial compensation down the road if the other driver tries to deny any wrongdoing in court.
7. Your vehicle was struck at its rear or side by another car. This is particularly important because the side and rear collisions have a greater potential of causing serious injuries, especially to passengers in the car.
8. You believe you were not at fault for the accident, yet you cannot find any information on who may have caused the accident. If this is the case, you should speak with a lawyer as soon as possible because their expertise in handling auto accident cases can help guide you on what to do next, including filing a claim or pressing charges against someone else.
If you have sustained injuries in an auto accident and do not know your legal rights, it is highly recommended that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. While you may feel that your injury claim is simple, doing so without proper knowledge of the law can cause potential issues.