Often times when people call us regarding their accident or injury law legal issue - one of the the first thing they ask is what their case is worth. Unfortunately the answer to this question is not always an easy and simple answer.
There are many reasons that you should hire an attorney to represent you if you have been hurt or injured due to someone else’s negligence.
The Insurance Companies Goal Is To Pay Out At Little As Possible
The first thing to understand is that when you are involved in a situation whereby you have been hurt or injured, you will be negotiating with an insurance company for compensation. The Insurance companies objective or goal as a business is to NOT pay out a claim, or to pay out as little as possible. Insurance companies make more money when they pay out less claims.
Insurance companies can use whatever you say against you. Think about it in these terms, if you were arrested for a crime you didn’t commit, you probably wouldn’t talk to a prosecutor or law enforcement without an attorney present. The same holds true for communicating with insurance companies. Because people don’t deal with insurance companies on a daily basis, if they decide to make a statement they may say something that the insurance company can use against them to reduce their compensation. Remember insurance adjusters are trained to pay out the least that they can?—?that is their job! The bottom line is that you may inadvertently admit fault?—?remember the Insurance companies are in the business of making money. They train their adjusters to minimize the amount they pay out, even on completely valid claims. Additionally, an insurance company representative may try and obtain a statement from you or ask questions hoping that you inadvertently admit full or partial liability or fault. This can impact your ability to recover the compensation that is fair and just.
An attorney can insure that you do not make a mistake and make sure that your rights are protected!
Establishing Negligence Can Be Challenging
If liability after a car or motor vehicle accident is contested, an investigation may become necessary to establish negligence. A car accident lawyer will know where and how to look for evidence that supports your case, and know how to gather important information such as police reports, etc.
Attorneys Have Relationships with Doctors & Other Medical Professionals
Often times accident victims without an attorney do not deal with medical providers in the most effective way or visit all the medical providers that they need quickly enough. In addition, sometimes car accident injuries don’t appear for weeks or even months after the original accident occurred. A car accident attorney can help guide, inform and educate you on your best course of action to get the compensation that you deserve.
An Attorney Can help You Control The Information After Your Car Accident
Immediately following an accident it is probable that the police will be called to investigate the accident scene. You may be asked questions regarding what occurred or asked to complete a written statement. The officer may ask you if you were speeding, talking on a cell phone, texting, etc? At the time of the incident you will likely be shaken, rattled, confused, upset and disoriented. You may make a statement that isn’t entirely accurate as you are still trying to process what happened during this highly emotional time. The same can occur when making a statement down the road to the Insurance company. Regardless to the extent of your damages and the value of your claim a car accident attorney can inform and educate you about how to move forward and protect yourself and your rights.
What is the Process?
First we must understand all the facts and circumstances of each individual case and situation. We also need to understand exactly what expenses and damages have been incurred due to the negligence of others. In addition, we often times need to gather other outside information such as police reports and medical records. As you can imagine this can sometimes be a complex process. Only then can we examine and determine what the economic losses and non-economic damages are for a case.
What Are Economic Losses?
Economic losses usually include medical and hospital bills, loss of income, and can include property damage, etc... Basically these losses include anything that caused you to incur costs or financial liability due to the negligence of others.
What Are Non-Economic Damages?
These are damages that caused you pain and suffering due to the negligence of another party. A serious accident or injury can cause both mental trauma as well as physical trauma that can last a lifetime after the accident or injury has occurred. In addition, the severity of each personal injury case is different. Again, understanding what the value should be in each individual case can be extremely complex. For example, we recently saw a motor vehicle accident case that involved four college students. The students pulled out into traffic, and were "T-Boned" by a reckless driver. The accident caused the death of two of the four passengers in the vehicle, two passengers survived. Of the survivors, one survivor lost their boyfriend and best friend in the accident at the same time. Although the physical injuries were not severe, the mental trauma will last a lifetime. As you can imagine, it is not always easy to place a dollar value on damages.
How Are Losses & Damages Calculated?
We hire experts to help us calculate the damages. We use vocational experts (occupation / employment), medical professionals and doctors, economists, and others to understand the true value of each case.
For example, we work with and have relationships with vocational experts. These people are experts in occupation and employment, and can help us understand if you will be able to perform the same type of work you did before your accident and injury. They also help us understand if you will be able to work again in the future, or if a vocational job change may be required. For example, an electrician who was severely physically injured may never be able to perform the type of labor they before the accident or injury occurred.
After understanding the economic losses, and the non-economic damages - we can then understand what the true and full value of an accident or injury law case is. Lawyers and law firms that do not regularly practice within personal injury and accident law often times do not understand the importance of utilizing the assistance of outside professionals to maximize the true and full value of a personal injury or accident law case.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury & Accident Attorney
No matter what kind of personal injury accident you are dealing with, attorney Matt LaTulip can explain your rights and protect your best interests. Contact our law firm online or call 219-756-7600 to schedule a free initial consultation with attorney LaTulip. If you are unable to travel, attorney Matt LaTulip can come to you.
If you or a loved one has been hurt or injured, The Law Offices of Matthew D. LaTulip can help you.