There is no legal requirement to hire an attorney to represent you after a car accident. A person injured in a car accident in New Orleans has every right to represent themselves while making a claim against the person responsible for causing their damage. But injured persons need to understand what they will be up against and the benefits of hiring an attorney before deciding whether or not to pursue a claim without legal representation.
What You Need to Do to Get Benefits After Being Injured in a Car Accident
When a person has been injured in a car accident, they may need medical treatment. There may be property damage to their vehicle. Insurance companies are most often the source of payment for damages sustained in car accidents. Insurance contracts will be interpreted as narrowly as possible by insurance companies because they do not want to pay out any more than is absolutely necessary.
Getting insurance companies to provide coverage and to continue coverage for ongoing injuries is a constant process of negotiation. Any request for benefits will need to be verified. Insurance companies have criteria that must be met before they have to pay benefits. Understanding those criteria and what is necessary to trigager coverage is crucial to receiving all the benefits a person may be entitled to.
Dealing with Insurance Companies
After a car accident, someone who is injured will be dealing with their own insurance company and perhaps the insurance companies of other drivers. The coverage provided by an insurance company is spelled out in the contract of insurance. Insurance terminology may be used that has legal significance generally not understood by those who are not familiar with insurance law. Insurance companies are at an advantage in claims negotiations because they know how insurance contracts work.
Insurance companies hire lawyers to represent their interests in defending claims. The average person injured in a car accident lacks the knowledge and tactical experience to adequately represent their interests without professional assistance.
Why Societies Need Lawyers
For societies to function with some kind of order, there must be rules that everyone agrees to follow. For those who do not follow the rules, there are consequences. The consequences must be enforced to have any practical significance. So the ability to enforce the consequences must be available to all who seek to enforce them. Attorneys serve three primary functions that help to keep order within a society.
- Attorneys study the laws, and their practice helps make sure laws are enforced.
- Attorneys help to ensure laws are applied equally, and every person has the same opportunity to benefit.
- Attorneys provide counsel on complex alternatives and help guide people toward the best resolution of their legal issues.
The enforcement of legal rights and consequences can have life-changing effects on the people involved. You may be in the fight of your life and need someone on your side who knows what you are facing and can help get you the best results. Practicing law is more than just knowing the law. It is an adversarial process. It is two sides taking opposite positions and using the law as a sword or a shield. A favorable outcome requires a winning legal strategy.
Primary Reasons People Needing Legal Help Hesitate to Hire Attorneys
A significant number of people do find themselves in the kind of serious legal trouble that could benefit from legal representation. According to The National Law Review, a recent study disclosed 1 out of 5 people have lost their homes or their occupations due to their legal problems. Yet despite the magnitude of the consequences, the majority of those surveyed did not use the services of an attorney to assist in dealing with their legal predicaments.
So why are people who are facing major legal challenges reluctant to hire a lawyer? It basically comes down to money.
- Lawyers cost too much
- Trust is an issue due to a lack of perceived transparency – especially with regard to fees
- There are free or low-cost legal help alternatives available
Benefits of Hiring a Lawyer to Handle a Car Accident Case
Concern about the cost of hiring an attorney may be because some lawyers charge an hourly rate and hours can quickly add up to large legal fees. But attorneys who handle personal injury claims from car accidents usually get paid a percentage of the compensation awarded to a client – and often get paid only if there is a successful result. Fees may be negotiable, and there are typically no fees charged upfront. Many law firms also offer free consultations in order to learn about a legal situation and recommend a course of action.
Getting a legal opinion is a helpful start. However, there are also procedures that must be followed when making a claim. Lawyers who handle personal injury claims deal with insurance companies routinely. They can identify where an insurance company will try to point to weaknesses in a claim and be prepared with evidence in response to objections. Insurance companies become more careful about following the rules when an injured person is represented by an attorney.
Attorneys are experienced at making persuasive legal arguments. They know how to pair the facts of a situation with the applicable laws and present the most convincing assertions on behalf of their clients. Lawyers can have beneficial inside knowledge from past experience working with insurance companies and courts that may be used to the advantage of a client.
A person who has been injured in a car accident has a lot to deal with. Injuries can be hard enough on the body and the mind. The added stress of trying to figure out how to handle a legal claim will not be beneficial for the healing process. Someone who is trying to heal and fight a legal battle is not able to give their best efforts to either pursuit.
Recovery from injuries has everything to do with future quality of life. Personal injury attorneys are trained, experienced, and ready to step in and take over all matters relating to a legal claim so their clients can focus exclusively on the important job of getting healthy.
If you have been involved in a car accident, contact Alvendia Kelly & Demarest today at 504-200-0000 to schedule a free consultation.