When Do I Need An Attorney For a Auto Accident?
What are the warning signs that I should talk to an accident attorney if I’ve been hurt in a car, truck or motorcycle crash?
Many insurance companies provide prompt and courteous service. However, some insurance companies will contact you shortly after an accident and offer a settlement. While reaching a settlement of a legal dispute is not necessarily a bad thing, entering into an early settlement may not be in your best interest and the prompt and courteous service can end up depriving you of your legal rights and saving the insurance company money. By accepting a settlement shortly after you have been in an accident, the following can occur:
- You will need to sign a release giving up all of your legal rights from the case.
- The settlement amount paid by the insurance company will be very small ($500.00 to $1,000.00 in many cases).
- You may not know the full extent of your injuries.
- Future medical expenses may go unreimbursed to you.
- Future wage losses will not be reimbursed to you.
- If the injury becomes a permanent one, you will have lost your rights for reasonable compensation.
In many cases, I have been contacted by injury victims that signed a release within a week following the accident not knowing that the injury was going to require ongoing and extensive medical care and treatment. In such a circumstance, the case has been lawfully settled and the release is binding.
Insurance adjusters are trained and educated in insurance law and even in negotiation. When negotiating without a lawyer, you are at a distinct disadvantage. At a very minimum, contact an attorney following the crash and before signing anything for the insurance company. If you’ve been injured in a car, truck or motorcycle crash, contact Cory Whalen for a free consultation.