When Do I Need a Lawyer After a Car Accident?
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident you should consult with a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced lawyer knows the local laws, monitors changes in the law, and understands what it takes to represent an injured person, whether it is a driver, passenger, pedestrian, motorcyclist or bicyclist in any type of motor vehicle accident case.
No two car accidents are exactly the same, whether they happened in New York or anywhere else in the country. For this reason alone, you should hire an attorney with a practice concentration in injury cases in the location where your accident took place, as soon as possible following the crash. Another reason you should hire an attorney immediately is that insurance companies have their own attorneys working alongside adjusters who begin investigating the circumstances of the crash as soon as they are notified.
Since they will promptly get to work building the best case they can to deny you any compensation for your injuries, or to pay you as they can, it is prudent for you to move to protect and advance your interests. Hiring a dedicated personal injury lawyer who knows exactly what steps to take on your behalf is a wise step in that direction that you ought to take just as soon as you are able.
Some injury victims want to represent themselves after a car accident. Unfortunately, such claimants can find themselves being offered a lowball settlement amount or having their claim denied from the start. Let’s explore when you should hire a car accident attorney in this post.
Seek Medical Care First
Even though it is best to hire a car accident attorney immediately following a crash, there are some other important items you need to take care of that are of an even more urgent nature. One of those items is that you should seek medical care first. Your health is the most important thing following a car accident. Let the responding emergency medical technicians evaluate you on the scene and transport you to the hospital, if necessary.
Very often, people with serious injuries refuse medical attention at the scene or an ambulance to the emergency room. Even though they are hurt, they may have young children to get home to care for, or they may have a fear of going to the hospital or they may have any one of a variety of other reasons for declining immediate medical care. If you don’t go to the hospital right away, be sure to visit an urgent care facility or your primary care physician (PCP) as soon as you can.
While advocating your legal rights and seeking compensation for your injuries are so very important, hiring a lawyer can actually contribute to your healing process as well. When you are relieved of the burdens and pressures of communicating with the at-fault party’s insurance company and defense lawyers, as well as the deadlines associated with filing related documents, you are freed up to focus on your medical treatment, your recovery and on rebuilding your life.
Hire an Attorney as Soon as Possible
After seeking medical care you can turn your attention to hiring a car accident attorney. After reviewing testimonials, reviews, and recommendations from family members and others you trust; it’s time to call and schedule a consultation with an attorney. Don’t wait until you hear from the other driver’s insurance company to find an attorney. You will want the attorney to handle all communication with the insurance adjuster for you. Having an attorney by your side to deal with the insurance company makes your life much easier and less stressful.
You Need a Lawyer If You are Injured
Not all car accidents require legal representation in New York. However, if you have been injured in a car accident it is imperative that you retain an attorney. You should never represent yourself when injured. The stakes are too high to try your hand at the law.
You Cannot Work Due to Your Injuries
If you cannot work because of your injuries, an attorney can help you receive compensation for your lost wages and for future lost wages if you are unable to return to the workforce.
The Accident Involved Multiple Parties
If the crash involved multiple parties, specifically multiple at-fault parties, an attorney can help you make sense of a very complicated situation. Who do you file a claim against? Who do you file a lawsuit against? Do you file separate claims and lawsuits? Can you file one lawsuit naming all of the at-fault drivers? These are all questions that a New York car accident attorney will be able to answer during your consultation.
Additionally, sometimes there can be a legally and financially responsible party or parties that you may not even be aware of. For example, a municipality may be at-fault if road design contributed to the accident or an at-fault driver’s employer may be liable if that driver was in the course of his or her employment at the time of the accident. These are only two of many possible scenarios where it is in your best interest to have a personal injury lawyer review and analyze the facts of your accident and handle the prosecution of a claim for compensation on your behalf.
Too Much Time Has Passed
If a significant period of time has passed since the accident and steps were never taken to seek compensation for your injuries, we urge you to call our office now. The statute of limitations in New York for car accident injuries is generally three years from the date of the crash but in some cases (as with cases involving municipalities or public authorities, for example), the limitation-period may be much shorter. If you are closing in on this deadline please take action now and call us.
We have clients who delayed contacting a lawyer after being injured in an accident for a great variety of reasons. Some had complicated family dynamics, some had unrelated health problems, some were afraid of the legal process and others just procrastinated thinking, “I’ll get around to it.” Typically, in these situations, once they do contact us and experience how convenient we work to make every aspect of the process, they feel relieved that they are now on the right path.
Need a Car Accident Attorney? Call Friedman & Simon Today
If you are in need of a car accident attorney because you suffered an injury, call the office of Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. now at (516) 932-0400 to schedule a free consultation.