If you were injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you may be wondering whether you need to hire a personal injury lawyer. Most attorneys offer a free consultation, where you can discuss your case and whether you require legal representation.
It’s best to reach out as soon as possible so you can get started on the process of pursuing compensation for the harm you suffered. In the meantime, read on to learn more about personal injury attorneys and when you might need one.
What Do Florida Personal Injury Attorneys Do?
Personal injury lawyers ensure that your rights are protected throughout the claims process. They also become your point of contact and legal representative, so insurance adjusters and other relevant parties can go through them.
This allows you to focus on your recovery and delegate your claim to an experienced legal advocate.
When you hire a personal injury attorney in Florida, you can expect them to handle the following responsibilities:
- Answer any questions you have
- Investigate the accident
- Identify all at-fault parties and possible pathways for financial recovery
- Identify, gather, and preserve evidence to prove your claim
- Interview witnesses
- Request accident reports and medical records
- Work closely with your medical team to understand how the accident has affected you
- Calculate the damages to which you are entitled
- Demand fair compensation for your injuries
- File claims on your behalf
- Monitor case deadlines
- Negotiate with the insurance company
Your lawyer will also keep you informed of the status of your case.
The Role of Insurance Adjusters
Personal injury lawyers level the playing field against insurance adjusters. Adjusters work for the insurance company. Their sole mission is to settle your case for as little money as possible, and possibly even for nothing.
Insurance adjusters may use various tactics to try to achieve this objective, including:
- Telling accident victims they have to provide a recorded statement to process their claim
- Offering a fast settlement before injury victims have a chance to learn the full extent of their injuries and how the accident may impact them
- Sending broad medical releases to victims to sign to try to obtain old medical records that indicate a pre-existing condition they can blame your current injuries on
- Delaying your claim so you accept a low settlement offer out of desperation or give up on pursuing your claim
- Saying you don’t need a personal injury lawyer
A personal injury attorney can protect you from aggressive claims adjusters who simply want to pay you as little as possible for your injuries.
Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you think you need a personal injury lawyer, you probably do. Lawyers have years of education and experience in the legal arena. They can provide targeted legal services to you so you can concentrate on your recovery.
Do I Have To Hire a Personal Injury Attorney?
Nothing in the law requires you to have an attorney if you are injured because of another’s negligence. However, if you try to resolve your claim on your own, you may quickly become overwhelmed after learning how much goes into dealing with the process.
Trying to handle this heavy burden while you are already suffering from a serious injury can add unnecessary anxiety and stress to your life.
Signs You Might Need a Florida Personal Injury Lawyer
While you are free to hire an injury attorney at any point, there are certain times when it is particularly important to hire a lawyer. Some signs that you may need a personal injury attorney include the following:
You Suffered a Serious Injury
Florida is a no-fault state for car accidents. You turn to your own auto insurance provider for coverage after an accident, regardless of fault. However, your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance only provides for a portion of your losses and does not compensate you for pain and suffering and other losses you may have experienced.
However, if you suffered a serious injury in an accident that wasn’t your fault, you can step outside the no-fault system and pursue compensation for the full extent of your harm. Severe injuries could result in higher settlements to fairly compensate you for the significant impact the accident has on your life.
If you suffered severe injuries in any other type of accident, you should also consider speaking with an attorney. Your case may be worth a substantial amount of money. Legal representation can make all the difference in securing the compensation you deserve under state law.
You Suffered a Permanent Disability Because of the Accident
If you suffered a permanent disability, it is essential that you settle your case for an amount that will fairly pay you for your anticipated future losses.
Permanent disabilities can prevent you from ever returning to work and being able to support your family. They can also lead to significant medical expenses and create a significant negative impact on your life.
It can be difficult to determine the lifelong impact a permanent disability can have. However, personal injury lawyers can retain economic experts, medical specialists, or other experts to estimate the value of your claim.
The Insurance Company Is Delaying Your Settlement
As noted before, insurance adjusters sometimes intentionally delay settlements to frustrate the process. This could be a practice known as “bad faith,” which is illegal and may allow you to seek additional compensation.
However, proving bad faith can be complex. A personal injury lawyer will know the necessary elements to prove such claims or leverage this information to expedite your claim.
You Don’t Know What Your Claim Is Worth
Determining the value of your personal injury claim can be difficult. Sure, you can add up the costs you’ve incurred so far, but what about your future losses? And how much is your pain and suffering worth?
An experienced personal injury lawyer can help to accurately evaluate your claim. In Florida, you can seek compensation for the economic damages you incur, such as costs to repair or replace your damaged property, medical expenses, and lost income. You can also seek compensation for non-economic damages, including pain, suffering, and mental anguish.
An experienced injury lawyer can properly evaluate your claim.
Is It Worth Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney?
Accident victims sometimes worry about the cost of hiring a personal injury attorney. However, it’s important to keep in mind that we work on a contingency fee basis. We don’t get paid for our services unless and until we recover compensation on your behalf.
So, you don’t have to pay anything upfront, and you don’t pay for our services at all unless we are successful with your claim.
Contact Our Stuart Personal Injury Attorneys for a Free Consultation To See If You Can Benefit from Legal Representation
If you would like to learn more about how a Stuart personal injury lawyer can help, contact Kibbey Wagner, PLLC for dedicated legal assistance and guidance. We offer a free case review so you can learn more about your legal rights and options. Call (772) 444-7000 to contact our law firm for a free consultation to discuss your case with an injury lawyer