No one is ready for a car accident and the aftermath. But, if you’ve recently been in a car accident, you know it can cause pain, fear, inconvenience, and unplanned expenses. Having a reliable attorney for an auto accident can ease your legal journey and guide you on your way to finding justice.
If you have been wondering when to get an attorney for a car accident and if it’s too late to hire one, keep reading below.
What Should You Do After a Car Accident
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, there are a few steps to protect yourself and the passengers (if there were any).
Contact the Police
The first thing you need to do is file a police report. After the accident, call 911 to inform the police about what has happened. It is essential to have a police and medical report when building your case.
If you have a phone with you, make sure to snap photos of the license plates, property damage, vehicle damage, eyewitnesses, intersections, traffic patterns, and other details that might help your case.
Contact an Attorney for Car Accidents
Insurance companies will do everything to reduce their liability by offering a poor settlement offer. Without proper legal representation, you might be eager to accept the offer and later realize it was insufficient to cover your car accident injuries.
With a professional and reliable attorney for car accidents by your side, it is easier to build your case.
What Not to Do After a Car Accident
People experience car accidents differently. Depending on the severity of your accident, you might feel confused, distracted, and do some things that are wrong and might affect your case. We understand that this is a difficult time for you, but try to avoid these harmful car accident mistakes.
Not Reporting the Accident
Don’t let the other party convince you that it is okay to exchange contact information and leave the scene. Unfortunately, some injuries can take days to become apparent, so it is better to report the car incident immediately and receive a police report.
A car accident can happen to anyone, and while it is normal to say, “I’m sorry,” some people might take this as a confirmation of guilt. Before you say anything, it is best to consult with an attorney for an auto accident and explain what happened.
Accepting Insurance Settlement
Insurance agents can sometimes pressure you to accept a certain settlement. They use persuasive strategies to convince you that it is the right choice for you. However, you shouldn’t sign anything without consulting with a lawyer.
What to Provide Your Lawyer
Before you schedule a consultation with your lawyer for a car accident, make sure you have the necessary documentation:
- Contact details
- Key information about the accident
- Police and medical report
- Medical receipts
- Photos of the vehicle
- Witness statements
When to File a Claim
During your consultation, your lawyer will review all aspects of your case and inform you of the possible options. For example, you can file a personal injury claim to the insurance company of the responsible party. If the insurance company doesn’t accept your case, you may also need to file a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
Once the lawyer has the necessary documents, they can file a claim. The types of damages you can include in your claim are:
- Medical costs (hospital bills, physical therapy, medications)
- Pain and suffering
- Lost wages
- Reimbursement for vehicle repairs
- Wrongful death damages
What Is the Statute of Limitations?
If you don’t know when to get an attorney after a car accident, keep in mind there is a timeline for filing a claim. In Seattle, WA, there is a three-year statute of limitations for a personal injury or car accident. While three years might seem like a lot of time, accident attorneys advise clients not to wait too long to file a claim.
During this period, valuable documents or evidence might get lost and you won’t have enough information to file an insurance claim. If you’ve been injured in a car incident, don’t wait years to get legal help.
Is It Worth Getting a Car Accident Lawyer?
Should I get a lawyer for a car accident? Absolutely.
In almost all car disasters resulting in material damage or injury, it is worth having a lawyer by your side to help with your claim. A lawyer can explain your legal options and seek compensation for your losses.
Benefits of Hiring a Car Accident Attorney
Below are some of the main advantages of hiring a competent injury lawyer:
- Exceptional law knowledge and a thorough investigation
- Fair reimbursement
- Not missing essential deadlines
- Contingency basis
- They work with insurance companies
If you are wondering when to get an attorney for a car accident, call Coluccio Law at 206-202-0960 to schedule a free consultation.
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