Many people who are involved in a car accident find themselves with no idea what to do about it. They may have been hurt, and they need to know how to get the compensation that is rightfully theirs for their injuries. The legal process can be confusing and overwhelming, which is why many individuals decide not to hire a car accident attorney when going through this process alone. This blog post will provide you with all of the information that you need so that you can go through the legal process without a lawyer!
When you are involved in a car accident, it is important to take pictures of the scene. If there were any witnesses or other drivers that saw what happened, make sure to get their contact information so that they can be contacted about your case later on. It's also a good idea to document injuries and pain levels using an appropriate scale (injuries should have corresponding numbers) for medical documentation purposes. You will need this information when entering into negotiations with the insurance company after your claim has been submitted!
If you are injured in an accident that was not your fault, it is important to file a claim with the insurance company of the driver who caused your injuries. They should cover all medical costs for treatment related to this car accident. Usually this is handled by a car accident attorney, but if you want to pursue a car accident claim without a lawyer, you can do so by following the steps below.
If your injuries are not life-threatening, but have caused pain and suffering damages as well as financial loss (lost wages), then it may be worth pursuing a personal injury claim with the insurance company of the driver who hit you in an accident that was not their fault. You will need to draft up a demand letter for compensation, which outlines what happened during the accident and any injuries or economic losses sustained because of it. This should include medical bills detailing treatments done due to this car accident along with information on lost income if applicable. The next task is submitting your claim form!
After filling out all relevant details in your claim form (including contact information) attach copies of any evidence related to the accident such as photos, medical records, and statements from any witnesses, etc. Keep in mind that this is a completely voluntary process so it is up to you how much information you reveal about the accident together with an estimate of your losses.
It may be worth considering attempting to collect compensation for damages without involving lawyers or courts if:
(a) The person who caused the accident doesn't have insurance;
(b) You don't want lawyers involved because they will take at least 30% of what's collected as their fee; and/or
(c) You're not sure whether there are grounds for filing a lawsuit against another driver but feel like pursuing settlement negotiations directly would allow more control over the outcome.
There are many reasons why you may not want to hire a lawyer. The most obvious is the cost. According to one estimate, hiring a car accident attorney for your car accident case will result in at least 30% of what he or she collects from the other party going directly into their pocket as fees and expenses incurred during court proceedings. This means that if you end up with $200,000 after negotiations, but could have collected $250,000 through legal action (before lawyers took their share), then your net settlement would be only $160 000 ($200K -($30K * 20%)). Lawyers take such high percentages because they're essentially guaranteeing themselves a profit on the cases that settle out of court since there's no guarantee about whether civil court will go in their favor.
Another common reason you may not want to hire a car accident lawyer is from bad experiences in the past! It's common to hear that personal injury lawyers act aggressively on your case at first, and next thing you know they have radio silence. They get busy and don't prioritize your case the way you want it to be. This is a great reason to avoid using a lawyer, but keep in mind that not all lawyers operate this way. Hiring local lawyers usually helps make sure you are getting personalized service in your car accident case.
The other main reason you may not want to hire a lawyer is because you just don't have the money. The legal process can be lengthy and expensive, so if you are in a bind it's understandable that you would want to take on this expense alone.
If your case is worth less than $25k in damages, then hiring a car accident lawyer may not make sense for your situation as there are programs such as mediation which will help resolve cases without going into court.
If you decide to pursue a settlement without an attorney, it's important to understand how settlement negotiations actually work. First, the at-fault driver's insurance company will usually offer the victim a settlement, though they may also deny liability. This is called an "offer of judgment." In some cases, if there are grounds for filing suit against another driver but you're not sure whether it would be successful or worth your time and money to pursue litigation, this could make sense.
If negotiations don't go well or reach an impasse (for instance because the other party refuses to pay anything), then one option is to file a lawsuit in order to get compensation from them - although doing so can sometimes lead to even higher legal fees than negotiating directly with car accident lawyers. Regardless of which route you choose at that point, however, the vast majority of injury victims do end up accepting the settlement offer.
One of the most important steps that injury victims can take in order to be successful when negotiating is by making their case as strong as possible. In other words, they should gather all relevant documentation and try to prove not only what happened but also how it has impacted them since then. This could include medical records or reports about ongoing care (such as physical therapy sessions), bills for expenses incurred because of the accident (like car repair costs or medical bills) and any evidence available from eyewitnesses who may have seen what really transpired at the scene of the crash.
Injury attorneys often warn people against agreeing to pay a percentage up front; instead, you are typically told to insist on receiving compensation after work is done - because if your lawyer doesn't succeed they won't get paid as much. So, operating a claim without a lawyer means you should follow their model and not accept the first offer-the-cuff offer the other party gives you.
Trying to get money from a car accident claim without a lawyer is never easy. You will not be able to do it alone and you'll likely need a personal injury lawyer or other professional help in order to recover the compensation that you deserve for your injuries, lost wages and more. The insurance company is sure to hire an experienced accident lawyer, but there are some things you can do on your own before hiring legal counsel...
*Learn about insurance law so that when someone at the scene offers their phone number for representation-which may seem like a decent alternative-you know if they're qualified or just trying to sell low quality service.
*Start compiling evidence of what happened after the crash, such as eyewitness testimonies; taking pictures of all visible damage with documentation (date/time stamp) of each photo.
*Educate yourself on the type of insurance you have. This means learning exactly what PIP is and how it applies or doesn't apply to your case
Personal injury protection (PIP) is an insurance policy that all drivers must have, but the coverage amount can vary from state to state. PIP pays for medical bills and lost wages if you're injured in a car accident, regardless of who caused it.
The best thing about this type of auto insurance is that even if your other driver doesn't carry enough liability coverage, or their vehicle isn't insured at all-you'll still be taken care of with no hassles on your end! The downside: PIP only covers certain types of costs associated with accidents so make sure you know what they are when shopping around or gearing up to make your claim.
Your PIP coverage is the first point of leverage when negotiating a car accident claim.
If you're in an accident, it's important to be aware of how much PIP coverage your policy provides and whether or not that amount is enough for the expenses as a result of injury due to car crash. Talk with your insurance company about what their liability limits are from the beginning so there aren't any surprises later on when you file a claim.
The average settlement value per person after an auto accident can range anywhere between $20K-$50K, but with some negotiating skills-you could potentially get up to four times that! These amounts may seem like they're out of reach at first glance, but if you know where to find them (such as through online resources), then these numbers become more attainable than they seem at first.
It's important to know how much your pain and suffering is worth so that you can have a better understanding of the amount needed for compensation. For example, if you sustained a personal injury in a car crash that caused $100K in medical bills as well as loss of employment income due to time spent recovering from surgery, then this would be something like $20,000-$50,000 total. This number will vary based on the extent of your injuries that were incurred and other factors related to the case itself, such as medical treatment or medical expenses--but it serves as an average range throughout each state.
If there are any extenuating circumstances surrounding your car accident claim such as lost wages or punitive damages which could affect the final settlement value. Educating yourself on these circumstances can give you an advantage, as you can leverage them to increase your pain and suffering calculation with your insurance company even without a lawyer.
For example, if the other driver was driving while they were drunk or high then you could argue that their intoxication should be included in your settlement. In this case it would warrant a higher pain and suffering calculation since more factors are involved--the longer term effects of addiction as well as how impaired judgement can result in them making poor decisions about getting behind the wheel to begin with.
The point is, keep all these things on hand so when it comes time to negotiate a car accident settlement with an insurance adjuster. If you want to learn how to get money from a car accident without a lawyer you need to understand how the insurance company will defend the accident and which ways you can spin your injury claim to maximize your compensation. This is why a personal injury attorney is so important in these cases, they have the experience needed to deal with the insurance company after an accident.
If you are the victim of a serious personal injury, then it is in your best interest to hire a car accident lawyer. Serious injuries that may warrant hiring an attorney include: broken bones, brain trauma or head injury, severe burns and other types of serious bodily harm. If you do not have any experience dealing with insurance companies on claims like this before (or don't want to), then we recommend working with someone who does.
A car accident lawyer can be a valued resource as they understand the nuances of the law in your area and can utilize this knowledge to litigate your case.
If you need a lawyer, there are several factors to consider when choosing one. First of all, make sure they specialize in the area where your incident took place . Secondly, find out their rates and how much work experience they have with similar cases that ended up being successful (i.e., won by the victim). Finally, it's important to feel comfortable talking with them about your case as well as understanding what is going on at every stage of the process. A good car accident attorney should be willing and able to answer any questions or concerns you may have- so ask away!
As a rule of thumb, a personal injury lawyer will take around 30% of your settlement, so depending on what your pain and suffering calculation looks like, you can assume that as a minimum cost. It's also important to keep in mind that a lawyer can also find additional ways to maximize your settlement utilizing their knowledge of the legal systems. This can also significantly reduce headaches for you in dealing with an insurance company and allow you to focus on recovering from your injuries if you sustained any.
Now that you know how to get money from a car accident without a lawyer, do you think it might be worth your while? Is the legal process in retrieving compensation after an incident confusing for someone who does not have expertise in law? Maybe. However, if there is one thing we should all remember when trying to recover damages- it's this: knowledge is power! Knowledge about what steps are necessary beforehand will help greatly with recovering those compensations because the right car accident lawyer can make all the difference. "Knowledge," as they say, leads to peace and happiness.