Kibbey Wagner, PLLC | July 12, 2022 | Car Accidents
For a minor collision, it’s not always necessary to employ a car accident attorney, but you may want to consider it — just to be safe. Even in the case of a minor accident, it may be in your best interests to retain legal counsel, depending on the damage caused by the accident and any potential injuries.
What Constitutes a Minor Car Accident?
In general, if no one is seriously injured in the accident, and the damage to your car is minimal, an automobile accident is deemed minor. In these kinds of cases, it is possible that your insurance coverage will cover your economic and non-economic damages, and you will be able to move on with your life.
However, for the reasons below, it could be in your best interests to seek the advice of legal counsel from a personal injury attorney who can assist you in determining the specifics of your accident.
The Costs May Be Higher Than You Expect
When another motorist rear-ends you in a minor collision, you might assume that all that has to be done is to make a claim with your insurance provider, who will happily pay for any damages. However, insurance companies do not always make things that easy.
If you had an injury that did not manifest itself right away, insurance companies could argue that some other superseding event actually caused your car accident injury. A simple claim with your insurance company can easily become a time-consuming legal battle.
Potential Harms You May Have Experienced
More than 2.3 million individuals visit emergency rooms each year as a result of injuries sustained in motor vehicle accidents, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). However, following a minor auto accident, adrenaline pumping through your body makes you feel fine, delaying any visit to the doctor.
You could have experienced injuries after a minor vehicle accident that don’t show up for days or weeks. A study by the Cleveland Clinic reveals that neck injuries may not show symptoms for some time after a motor vehicle accident. But once the injury reveals itself, a victim may experience a multitude of symptoms, such as:
- Neck pain, stiffness, and swelling
- Headaches, trouble sleeping, or memory loss
- Muscle spasms, strains, or tingling
- Nausea and vomiting
- Blurry vision and dizziness
Chronic pain from strains such as a neck injury caused by a motor vehicle accident may need long-term care and rehabilitation. And as more medical care is required, more bills pile up. If your insurance company or the negligent driver refuses to pay, you may need an attorney to help settle your claim.
Time Constraints on Filing a Lawsuit
Car accident cases are subject to what is known as a statute of limitations, which means that you only have a limited amount of time when you can file a lawsuit.
Four years may seem like plenty of time, but some injuries take years to heal. Therefore, to increase your chances of receiving fair compensation and prevent your claim from being barred, you should submit a claim as soon as possible.
Timeliness is especially important when it comes to evidence. Suppose that you file a claim quickly, while evidence is still fresh and witnesses still remember what they saw. In that case, your attorney can use that vital information as they gather evidence to prove your injuries and settle your claim.