Especially if this is your first time being in a serious car collision, you may not know much about what to expect from the lawsuit process. That’s why it’s a smart decision to hire a qualified personal injury law firm in Southwest Virginia that can help you navigate the process.
Here are some things you should know before filing a lawsuit with a Roanoke personal injury lawyer.
1. PI Lawsuits Are Designed to Protect You
After an injury, there are many things to worry about, from lost income and medical bills to emotional stress and disruption to your daily routine. Personal injury lawsuits are in place to protect your rights and financial future, allowing you the chance to recover compensation through a settlement or at trial.
2. You Can Recover More with a Lawyer on Your Side
The fact is, those who hire a personal injury attorney after a collision tend to recover much more compensation as those who attempt it all on their own. That’s because personal injury lawyers understand how to properly value claims and what they need to do to negotiate a favorable settlement. If an insurance company shows they are unwilling to negotiate, your lawyer can present your case in the strongest way possible in front of a judge and jury.
3. The Sooner You Call, the Better
Calling a PI lawyer early on in the process can prevent you from making costly mistakes, such as giving the insurance company too much information or failing to properly document your injury. An attorney will guide you through complicated legal procedures, communicating with the insurance company on your behalf. In addition, the sooner you act, the more likely you will be to recall details about your injury, and still have access to receipts, witnesses, and other evidence.
4. Don’t Sign Anything
Refrain from signing anything until you have spoken to an attorney. The insurance adjuster will try and convince you there’s no need to involve a lawyer, but never forget that insurance companies always hope you will deal directly with them so that you will end up settling for far less than your claim is actually worth. Signing something without speaking to your lawyer first could keep you from recovering the deserved compensation.
5. You Can Win a Case in One of Two Ways
Personal injury cases may be settled out of court or go to trial. A settlement is an agreement between both parties as to the amount of compensation the plaintiff will get. A verdict in court is essentially a decision made by a jury or judge following mandatory court proceedings. If a settlement can’t be reached, your attorney can still recover favorable compensation. In fact, jury awards are significantly higher than pre-trial offers in most cases.
6. Establishing Negligence is Important
It’s critical to establish that your injury resulted from the other party’s negligence, or failure to use reasonable care to ensure your safety. That person could be held liable for any damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and diminished earning capacity.
7. Personal Injury Cases Are Time-Consuming
Personal injury cases are complicated and complex, often taking months or years to resolve. Your attorney should be dedicated to resolving your case efficiently and quickly, while ensuring the best possible outcome for you.
8. You Have to File a Lawsuit in a Timely Manner
There is a statute of limitations on filing a personal injury lawsuit, usually two years. It’s important to contact a personal injury law firm in Southwest Virginia sooner rather than later so you don’t miss any deadlines.
Contact Altizer Law
Contact your trusted personal injury lawyer in Roanoke VA for a free, no-obligation consultation at 540-345-2000. We can let you know what to expect before filing a personal injury lawsuit. You have nothing to lose!