If you're one of those people who dreads the idea of a lawsuit, you're not alone. Many people wonder whether their accident is really serious enough to warrant the court's time (and their effort). While you can sue for a multitude of grievances large and small, there are five circumstances in which you should seriously consider hiring a car accident lawyer.
1. One or more uninsured drivers involved in the accident
Even if you have coverage to protect you from un- or underinsured motorists, it may not be enough to cover the actual damages you suffer. You can actually file a lawsuit against the uninsured party to recover money directly from them.
2. There's a serious injury or death
With any luck, your accident only caused minor injuries. You're well within your rights to sue for those, especially if the other driver is uninsured, but car accidents can also cause serious bodily injuries and even deaths. This can be a traumatic time, and if someone else is responsible for these injuries, you deserve compensation.
A lot of people feel like lawsuits are only filed by money-grubbing people out to make a quick buck, but that's almost never true. The reality is, injuries related to car accidents can be very expensive. Even if you're insured, the out-of-pocket cost can be a major setback. And your family shouldn't have to make financial sacrifices due to someone else's negligence. A qualified car accident attorney can help you calculate those damages and navigate some very complex legal waters.
3. There are multiple involved parties
We tend to think of car accidents as between two people, but often, a third vehicle is involved. This is where it can be very complicated, because more than one party may share responsibility for your injuries. Especially if you live in an area where they have comparative negligence laws, figuring out how and who to sue for what can be complex. If you may be one of the responsible parties, a lawyer can help ensure you pay only for what you're responsible for causing.
4. You need get evidence
Many people assume all the evidence is collected by the police (or the involved parties) at the scene. But no matter how much evidence is gathered, there may be times when you need a court order to obtain the evidence you need. This is called the discovery phase of the process, and you may need help from a qualified attorney to get what you need in a timely manner.
If you've been involved in a car accident, you may want to access the "black box" many new cars have that records certain data (like speed and whether or not the driver or passengers were wearing a seatbelt) to prove your case.
5. You'd like to settle
If you're already involved in the process, the other party will often try to settle out of court. This is preferable for most people because it avoids long, complicated legal battles, especially when both parties know who's at fault. That said, these are legal negotiations, and (especially if the other party already has a lawyer) you need an experienced professional on your side to make sure you get the best outcome possible.
Getting the Help You NeedIf you're ever unsure about whether to file a lawsuit, give us a call. We'll hear your side of the story and help you determine what the most beneficial course of action is for your specific situation. You can contact, or call, our Orlando car accident lawyers at the Draper Law Office at 866.767.4711 for a free, no-obligation consultation.