When you have been injured in a car accident, hiring a lawyer might not be your top priority.
After all, you are probably already juggling doctors’ appointments, calls with insurance companies, and vehicle repairs. The last thing you want is to make another phone call.
But the truth is, a great personal injury lawyer like Nick Martin will not just help you get the money you deserve for your injuries; they will also make the entire post-accident process much easier and less stressful.
5 Reasons to Hire a Georgia Personal Injury Lawyer
Do you understand all the intricacies of getting a settlement after a car accident injury? Most people only experience 3 or 4 car accidents in their lifetime, and many of those accidents are minor.
You may have never had to worry about medical bills after a car accident before, and hopefully, you never will again. So why not hire an expert who deals with cases like yours every single day?
A Dunwoody personal injury attorney will guide you through the entire legal process, from collecting the right information, to negotiating with insurance, to getting the right records from your doctors, and much more.
Here are some of the benefits you might not think about when hiring a personal injury lawyer.
- Help Talking with Insurance Companies
Did you know that vehicle insurance companies employ insurance adjusters whose main job is to find a reason to deny your claim? These professionals will try to poke holes in your story or find loopholes that excuse their companies from paying you what you deserve.
Without a lawyer on your side, it can be incredibly difficult to know what you should and should not say when talking to an insurance adjuster.
As a general rule, you should not report everything you know about the accident. Never speculate about what might have happened, and instead stick to reporting basic, verifiable facts. You also should never admit fault, even if you believe the accident was your responsibility.
When you work with a personal injury attorney, they can give you more specific guidance about your situation and the details you should avoid sharing. You can even practice your answers before talking to your lawyer.
And if you ever don’t know how to respond to a question, you can always tell the adjuster the magic words, “I need to consult with my lawyer before answering.”
- Guidance Around How Much Compensation You Deserve
Do you know how much money you deserve for your injuries? You may have a ballpark figure in mind, but compensation after an accident is difficult to quantify.
And in many Georgia car accidents, you can receive compensation for more than just your current medical bills and vehicle repairs, including:
- Any future medical bills that tie back to your accident
- Lost wages because of injury or lack of transportation
- Pain and suffering
- Vehicle rental expenses
A Dunwoody personal injury attorney can help you determine how much money you can expect to receive. Because they deal with cases like yours every day, they know when to settle and when to negotiate for more.
In some cases, working with an attorney can help you walk away with more money than you even knew was possible. Like Brian*, who was injured on his morning commute and worked with Nick Martin to win a settlement of $40,000. Not only were all of Brian’s medical bills covered, but he also walked away with a check.
Don’t settle for less than you deserve just because you don’t know what to ask for. Working with a personal injury lawyer can help you make sure you are fairly compensated for the injuries that weren’t your fault in the first place.
- Preparation for A Future Court Case
You may want to avoid a drawn-out court case, and your lawyer will understand that. But if negotiations with insurance aren’t successful, or you are being denied the fair compensation you deserve for your injuries and emotional pain, it may be necessary to take your case to court.
In this situation, it’s always best to have a lawyer on your side who is already familiar with your case. They will not need to rehash all the details with you to get up to speed, and they will already have all the evidence they need and a strategy in mind.
Plus, you will feel much greater peace of mind if you are represented by an attorney who you know and feel comfortable with. Why make litigation more stressful than you need to, when you could take one simple step today to make your life easier in the future?
- Less Time Spent on Administrative Tasks
You may not realize it yet, but car accidents require an enormous amount of paperwork. And you’ll need to keep all of those documents on hand in case you need to present them to insurance or to a judge.
Do you really have time to be organizing your notes about the accident, tracking down the right records from the right doctors, and filing every piece of communication you receive from insurance companies?
A personal injury attorney can help with all these administrative tasks and will keep your documents organized so you don’t have to worry about having what you need, when you need it. They can even file your claim for you if you are too injured, too overwhelmed, or just too busy.
- Emotional Support
The aftermath of a car accident injury is not just physically painful, it can also be incredibly emotionally challenging.
Your personal injury lawyer can take some of that weight off of your shoulders and serve as your guide through the entire process. When you work with Nick Martin, for example, he always takes the time to explain exactly what clients can expect from the claims process, as well as any legal action that may be necessary down the road.
When you know that your case is in expert hands, you can focus on the most important thing: healing from your injuries.
Steps You Should Take Before Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer
Should you bring an attorney in on your case right away, or wait until you know you need help?
It may seem reasonable to hold off on hiring a lawyer until your claim gets denied or your settlement offer is too low. But working with a lawyer from the start will give you far higher chances of success.
They can help you avoid key mistakes when talking to adjusters, and they will already be familiar with your case when the time comes to negotiate.
So, what information should you have prepared when talking to a personal injury lawyer? They will help you identify what documents you need to gather, but there are certain steps you should take at the scene of the accident, before you ever go to meet with an attorney or start filing your claim.
Keep in mind that none of these steps are more important than your safety. If you are seriously injured or unable to collect this information, a lawyer can always help you gather what you need later on. But, if possible, you should do the following at the scene of the accident:
- Call the Police: Georgia law requires drivers to report any accident resulting in an injury or at least $500 worth of damage. Plus, the police report will include a clear document of any damages and the events that led to them, which is useful for filing an insurance claim.
- Gather Contact Information: Make sure to collect the names and phone numbers of everyone else who was involved in the accident, along with their insurance information.
- Take Photos: If you are able, pull out your phone and snap some pictures of your vehicle and any of the other vehicles involved.
- Write Down Your Thoughts: An accident is a stressful experience, and it’s normal to struggle to remember what happened after the fact. So, take the time right away to write down your best recollection of the events of the accident, including where you were, what happened, and any road or weather conditions that might have played a role. If there are witnesses around, take a moment to ask them what they saw, too.
- Visit the Doctor: Even if you are not sure that you are injured, you should visit an urgent care or primary care doctor as soon as possible. It’s important to have an early record of any injuries that might be tied to the accident. Plus, sometimes minor symptoms like headaches or sore muscles are indicators of more serious issues. An early diagnosis will help your case and can improve your chances of recovering faster.
Just remember, the information you collect is for you and your attorney. You should not share all the details with the insurance company, because they will look for any possible reason to deny your claim.
How to Find a Personal Injury Lawyer in Georgia
So, you’ve decided you want to hire a personal injury lawyer, but how do you go about finding the right one for you?
If you don’t already know a personal injury lawyer, you can start by asking friends and family if they have any recommendations. Different attorneys can have very different working styles — and different levels of commitment to your case — so hearing firsthand accounts from people who’ve worked with that lawyer before can help you decide if they’re the right fit for you.
It’s also helpful to look at the attorney’s website and see what kind of cases they typically work on, and what types of results they get for their clients. Ideally, you’ll want a lawyer who has experience working on car accident cases specifically, and a strong track record of successes for past clients.
If at all possible, try to avoid the big box law firms you see advertised on TV and billboards. They may seem like the experienced, successful attorneys you need in your corner, but unfortunately, the experience with these firms will rarely be what you expect.
Lawyers at these companies have hundreds of cases, and they handle them by passing off much of the work to paralegals and case managers. Often, you’ll never even meet the lawyer you saw in the advertisements.
The insurance companies you’ll deal with after a car accident are experts at making sure they pay victims as little as possible; that’s how they make money. So, you need someone on your side who’s just as dedicated to your case, and unfortunately, big box lawyers just can’t offer you that level of dedication.
Look instead for smaller firms with strong track records, and don’t be afraid to ask questions in your first meeting about who will be handling the day-to-day management of your case.
At the Law Office of Nicholas P. Martin, you can feel confident knowing that Nick will work directly on your case and is never more than a phone call or email away.
What if My Attorney is Not the Right Fit?
If you’ve hired a personal injury lawyer and now realize they aren’t the right fit for you, don’t worry. In most car accident cases, you can easily fire your attorney and hire a new one who better matches what you are looking for.
You usually will not even need to pay extra out of pocket. Typical car accident attorney contracts stipulate that you will not be presented with a bill if you fire your attorney, and you’ll be entitled to access your complete file.
When you hire a new lawyer, they will have to pay off your first lawyer’s attorney’s lien, but this will not come out of your pocket.
To learn more about the 7 signs that it’s time to fire your lawyer, read this article.
Find a Dunwoody Personal Injury Lawyer Who’s on Your Side
If you are ready to hire a personal injury lawyer after a car accident — or you are considering hiring one but still have questions — our team at The Law Office of Nicholas P. Martin is here for you. We’re a small team committed to giving each client the full support they need, and we’ve successfully handled cases involving a range of complicated car accident situations, including:
- Careless drivers
- Catastrophic injuries
- Driver fatigue
- Pedestrian accidents
- Rideshare vehicles
- Uninsured motorists
- Wrongful death claims
We even offer a free consultation to anyone who wants to learn more about our services, so if you have questions or want to shop around to make sure you find the perfect fit, we can help you with that, too!
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