Unlike criminal cases, you aren't required to have an attorney in an injury case. However, if you do hire a lawyer, there is an increased likelihood of getting a settlement and an increase in the amount of settlements. While this isn't guaranteed, studies have shown that having an injury lawyer leads to a statistical increase in good outcomes.
It will be beneficial for you to work with a lawyer in most cases. Even if you think you understand the system, there may be issues that arise that you're not prepared to deal with. These issues could derail your case if you don't respond appropriately. Your lawyer will understand those situations and how to approach them. In addition, there are several other times when hiring a lawyer makes sense.
If you or anyone in your car was injured in the accident, you may very well want to work with a lawyer. The extent of injuries is not always easy to immediately gauge, and there are also considerations of pain and suffering and future medical bills. Hiring an attorney to help with this can take the pressure off you to know how to set a compensatory amount.
Let's face it: insurance companies aren't always easy to deal with. They may not respond to you for weeks at a time, or they might offer you a settlement that doesn't cover the damage caused by the accident. A lawyer can sometimes get things moving again or work to negotiate a fairer settlement.
If the other person in the accident has told you that they're hiring a lawyer, or if they mention it on the scene, it may be a good idea to hire a lawyer of your own. If the other side is represented by a lawyer and you aren't, you are very likely to leave money on the table. If they have a lawyer, you might want one too.
Accidents can be overwhelming. Don't ever feel like you need to go it alone. Lawyers are advocates for their clients. Your lawyer will explain all the details of the situation and take you through it, step by step. Many lawyers, like those at injury.com, offer a free consultation and don't charge unless they win your case, so you literally have nothing to lose by hiring one.
A 2017 survey done by Martindale-Nolo Research shows that 51% of respondents who didn't use a lawyer received a payout. That number jumps to 91% of respondents who did hire a lawyer. Those with a lawyer were nearly twice as successful in receiving a payout. Remember, many personal injury lawyers don't get paid unless you receive a settlement, so you're not responsible for payment unless you win.
In the same study mentioned above, people who hired a lawyer had settlements that averaged $77,600. Those without lawyers averaged $17,600. That means that those people who chose not to use a lawyer left an average of $60,000 on the table.
If your case goes to trial, there are fees associated, particularly for interviewing witnesses. Often, you'll be paying per hour for deposition. Any extra time spent figuring out how to do things will literally be money. However, lawyers are experienced in all aspects of the litigation process. They know how to do things correctly the first time around, limiting costs.
You are allowed to defend yourself in a personal injury case, but that's not always going to be the best solution. Make sure that you factor in the fact that you will still pay fees and may get a reduced settlement amount if you get a settlement at all. It may be free to receive an initial consultation with an injury lawyer. Your best course of action may be speaking with an attorney first about your personal case. Then you'll be better equipped to decide what's right for you and your situation.
Injury.com can evaluate your case in only three minutes. Our lawyers are professionals who can answer your questions and get you on the right track. Get started online now!