Anywhere from 20 to 50 million people around the world are injured each year in a car accident.
In fact, traffic accidents account for 2.2% of deaths around the world, making it one of the leading causes of preventable deaths.
If you’ve been in a crash, do you know when to get an attorney for a car accident?
There are a few things to look out for when it comes to hiring a lawyer to help you navigate a car accident claim. Read on for more information about when is the right time to call a lawyer to help you get the compensation you deserve.
1. You Feel Overwhelmed
A car accident generally can make you feel overwhelmed. That’s totally normal. But if the deductibles and calling the insurance agencies and settling your medical bills seem far too confusing, you should speak to an attorney.
You may not need one to navigate the entire case, but he or she can help you sort out what you need. He or she can also let you know if you need an attorney for further help, or if they can help you take the correct path on your own.
2. You Were Injured and It Wasn’t Your Fault
If you were injured in the car accident, and it wasn’t your fault, it is a good idea to consult an attorney.
Injuries from car accidents can be anything from PTSD to whiplash, to more severe cases that may leave you disabled for the rest of your life.
No matter what the injury is, if you have to pay medical bills towards it or have had to take time off work due to it, you could be owed a settlement.
In order to receive a settlement for a car accident, you’ll need to prove the accident was not your fault. This means that when it occurred, you were not disobeying traffic laws or doing anything illegal, like texting and driving.
In these cases, the other party’s insurance may compensate you for the injuries you’ve suffered.
Compensation can come in a variety of forms. You can receive compensation for your medical bills, the salary you missed while you were recovering from the accident and the loss of consortium. The latter refers to the fact that if your injury was severe, you may not be able to fully participate in the lives of your family the way you would have had you not been injured.
Loss of consortium can relate to your relationship with your spouse or your children.
3. You Were Injured and It Was Due to a Manufacturer Error
Just because a car accident occurred doesn’t mean someone was clearly at fault. Instead, car accidents can occur because there was an error with the manufacturing of the car you or the other party was driving at the time. If this is the case, neither party is responsible, but instead, the maker of the faulty car is responsible.
If, for instance, you sustained an injury or someone with you sustained an injury or died as a result of a faulty brake system in the other car, the manufacturer may owe both parties a settlement.
In this case, you may have to prove that it was not either party’s fault, and a qualified lawyer can help you do that.
The settlement from the manufacturer will cover the same things as the other party’s settlement might cover, including your hospital bills, loss of consortium and back salary you’ve lost from missed work days.
4. You or Someone in Your Party Sustained Injuries Because of a Third Party
If your car accident resulted because of neglect by the city you were in, this could also be grounds for consulting with a lawyer. Neglect by the city may include improper signage or unsafe roads. It may also include if the city has allowed people to drive on roads in severe weather without clothing them for repair.
It is the city’s responsibility to ensure that its citizens have safe roads to drive on. If they do not do so, this can open them up for a possible settlement because of your accident.
5. Someone Close to You Died as a Result of the Accident
Did someone you love, unfortunately, pass away in a car accident that was not your fault? In this case, you may have a claim for a wrongful death lawsuit.
As in the other cases, you will need to be able to prove that it was the fault of the other party, the manufacturer or a third party. Calling an experienced lawyer, however, will likely help you prove your case and help your family get the compensation you deserve during this difficult time.
Wondering When to Get an Attorney for a Car Accident?
This article has listed five scenarios that inform your decision of when to get an attorney for a car accident.
If you’re still unsure, it’s a good idea to call an attorney anyway to discuss your case and see if the firm can help you. Most attorneys offer a consultation without fee, and you can discuss what’s happened and decide if you’d like to proceed with a case.
If you live in the Greenville area and have recently been in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, contact our law offices today. Our expert team can discuss everything that’s occurred, and figure out together what you may be owed in compensation for your suffering.
Dan Pruitt is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in Greenville, SC. He graduated from University of Georgia, and has been practicing law for 25 years. Dan Pruitt believes in fighting for the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.