Three Things Accident Injury Attorneys Won’t Tell You
It’s a common scenario, especially during times like the “polar vortex” winter storm that has recently made its way across the U.S. You hit the brakes too fast, or the car in front of you does, or an icy road causes your vehicle to spin out and hit traffic in the left lane. You’ve been in an auto accident, and you might be injured. What do you do? There are a lot of things auto injury attorneys might say, especially if you call up the first firm you can think of after having heard their jingle on TV. Here are three things, though, that accident injury attorneys might not tell you, that you need to hear.
1. Don’t Fake or Exaggerate Your Claim
About 50% of car accidents — 2.9 million accidents — involve an injury, according to statistics provided by LawCore. This is not surprising, considering that vehicles are basically thin shells of metal hurtling at fairly high speeds. You absolutely should seek damages if you were hurt, and the other driver was at fault. Don’t take the route, however, of committing insurance fraud and faking injuries you don’t have. A quick search of recent cases shows that every month, people are arrested, and given jail time, for auto injury fraud. Additionally, many insurance companies hire private investigators to assess whether claims are true, so it’s not always easy to hide the truth.
2. Not Everybody Wins
It’s important to keep in mind, especially if you are going to court for a relatively small amount of money, that not everybody wins their case. According to TheLawDictionary, if your case does go to trial, you will lose 90% of the time. Of course, the silver lining is that only 5% of cases go to trial — the majority are settled pretrial, which means you are likely to receive at least some amount in damages. These negotiations and proceedings can take months, or even years, to wrap up though, so make sure you are committed to the time investment it will require. It’s important to note, as well, that if your lawyer is paid by contingency, they might take up to 40% of car accident settlements in fees.
3. Not All Attorneys are the Same
If you want to see great results, you need the right attorney for the job. Auto injury law is a popular area of law to go into because there is a fairly large need for representation, and attorneys stand to make a fair amount of money from car accident settlements. Make sure that the lawyers handling your case have years of experience in this specific aspect of law, and ask about their track record. In big law firms, one lawyer might meet with you initially, and then your case might be handed off to more junior attorneys — make sure you are okay with this transference.
What has your experience with car accident settlements been? Let us know in the comments. More: gatewaylawyers.com