You have a lot to deal with after a car accident. Doctor’s appointments, healing, and paying an increasing number of bills are just some of the worries heaped on your plate. You must also decide if you should contact a car accident lawyer in San Antonio. Knowing the exact scenarios that merit such a call, however, can be difficult. That’s why here, we’ve listed a few signs indicating it’s time to pick up the phone and protect your legal rights.
6 Signs You Should Hire a Car Accident Lawyer in San Antonio
1. You Have Catastrophic Injuries
From a legal point of view, catastrophic injuries are those that warrant more compensation than a standard personal injury case might. The applicable logic is simple: a victim of catastrophic injuries will suffer more in the future and therefore deserves a higher settlement to compensate for lost wages, medical help, and additional care needs. To be clear, a catastrophic injury can often be labeled in one of the following ways:
- Leaves one with a permanent disability
- Causes scarring, deformities, or disfigurement
- Requires special accommodations or life-long care
- Prevents a person from continuing to work in their professional field
Placing a value on catastrophic injuries can be arduous. Victims are often entitled to compensation for past, current, and future damages. An attorney will help make the necessary calculations and ensure that any settlement you receive is both fair and equitable.
2. You Need Help Managing the Insurance Provider
After an accident, a claims adjuster or analyst will likely contact you from the at-fault party’s insurance company. Their goal is to gather as much information as possible about the accident. Before you take this call, however, you need to be prepared for a potentially difficult conversation. The adjuster may ask questions intended to trip you up – and use the answers you give against you.
An attorney can manage conversations with the insurance adjuster on your behalf. They’re trained to keep answers short and factual and instantly recognize verbal traps. They will also negotiate using accident-related evidence and documentation. This can increase your chances of receiving a higher settlement offer. In that same vein, an abogados de accidentes will let you know when a proper settlement has been offered so you don’t leave money on the table.
3. You’ve Suffered Emotional Damage
The injuries sustained in a car accident are not always visible. Emotional distress can be so great that it interferes with your daily life. To illustrate, feelings of grief and/or sadness can lead to symptoms that include fatigue, flashbacks, and fluctuating moods. An attorney will help you receive proper medical treatment and also fight for greater compensation.
4. A Child Was Hurt in the Accident
When a child is involved in a car accident, the injuries sustained can lead to long-term emotional, physical, or cognitive impairments. It is therefore crucial that you speak to an attorney who can account for all of your child’s damages in the accident claim.
Keep in mind that your child cannot recover additional monies once the claim is settled. Later discovery of a disability or impairment cannot be compensated for, meaning you must get the settlement right the first time. An attorney is best suited to such negotiations and can handle all legal aspects of the claim, including any settlement approvals required by the court.
5. You Were Told You Do Not Need an Attorney
A claims adjuster might very well suggest you do not need a car accident lawyer in San Antonio. Their job is to protect the insurance company’s interests and to do that, they will take every possible step to undervalue or dismiss your claim. You should therefore be wary if any insurance representative states you do not need an attorney.
6. You Need Court Representation
Studies from the Bureau of Justice Statistics indicate that fewer than 5% of injury cases go to court. You need, however, to be prepared for court in case the insurance adjuster does deny your claim. You may also need to proceed with trial if the adjuster repeatedly offers a low settlement. Accepting such an offer can jeopardize your future financial health and make it increasingly difficult to pay for the care you need.
An attorney will understand the rules and formalities that accompany all court proceedings. Some rules limit the questions that can be asked of witnesses, while others govern the evidence that can be presented during a trial. Your attorney will also conduct extensive legal research to build your case from the ground up. The goal is twofold: to prove the defendant’s personal injury liability and convince the court you’ve sustained life-changing injuries.
An attorney will provide your best chances of successfully resolving a car accident claim. This is especially true if you have catastrophic injuries or suffered emotional distress. An attorney can also protect your child’s rights if they were injured in the accident, manage negotiations with the insurance adjuster, and provide court representation (if it comes to that). Finally, an attorney will help realize your case’s full financial value and advocate on your behalf.