After being injured in a car accident in Chicago, hiring an attorney can be one of the most essential steps, especially if you have a complicated case.
You and your family have the right to seek compensation from at-fault parties for your losses. This process is not always easy, and insurers may try to misinform you as to your rights and to the full amount of compensation that could be available.
How Soon Is Soon Enough?
When it comes to personal injury, hiring a car accident lawyer in Chicago immediately following your accident is often in your best interest.
However, we know that the hours and days following a car wreck can be a whirlwind of emotions and decisions. Not everyone hires an attorney as quickly as they should. Others may be confident that they can handle the claim themselves only to run into common legal obstacles.
If you have sustained injuries in an accident, here are signs that it is time to consult with a lawyer:
1. The Insurance Company Is Calling
You’re an honest person. You know that the other driver was at fault. You see nothing wrong with answering the insurance agent’s questions. The truth is, these people are trained to get you to talk. What you say to an insurance agent can come back to haunt you later. As soon as you begin getting calls from the other party’s insurance company, speak to an attorney who can help you protect your rights. Many people are convinced to make recorded statements, answer leading questions, or release their medical files when they are not legally required to do any of the above.
You are required to give the insurance company notice of a claim, confirm basic details about the accident, and provide proof of damages. Outside of that, you are not required to cooperate in any investigation until the defendant obtains a subpoena or similar court order for discovery.
Knowing your rights and how to respond to pressure is crucial, so having an attorney can provide much-needed guidance.
2. You Are Seriously Injured
It’s not unusual for people to believe themselves to be uninjured in an accident and refuse medical care. It’s only in the following days or weeks that their injuries become apparent. Whether you are immediately aware of your injuries or discover them days later, you can benefit from the services of an experienced car accident lawyer. You do not deserve to be held responsible for paying medical bills incurred because of someone’s negligence.
The value of an attorney is especially clear when your medical costs are significant. Larger medical bills mean more incentive for insurers to fight your claim. You may also miss critical costs, such as for projected future rehabilitation. Working with an attorney after a serious injury increases the chances that you are able to successfully document and claim all of your damages.
3. The Other Driver Claims Innocence or Accuses You of Fault
The police will investigate the scene of your accident to determine fault. If you discover that the other driver is claiming innocence and you believe them to be at fault, hire a lawyer. There are legal maneuvers proving negligence that the general public is typically unaware of. More importantly, your attorney can help you refute allegations that you were the one at fault.
In extreme cases, the defendant or their insurer may even threaten you with legal action. If this is the case, don’t be intimidated into giving up on your goals. Instead, hire an attorney to review your case details and help you defend against counter-allegations while you pursue your injury claim.
4. The Settlement Offer Doesn’t Cover Your Costs
Don’t be surprised when the other party’s insurance company offers you a settlement that doesn’t quite cover your incurred costs. These companies are looking out for their own profit statements, not your well-being. They are counting on the fact that you want to settle your claim and be done with everything as soon as possible.
5. Negotiating On Your Own Isn’t Working
You may have decided to try negotiating with the insurance company on your own. You believe that things are going well only to discover that the offer you are given isn’t enough. Or, you may find that the insurer is trying to deny a large portion of your claimed damages or rejecting your claim outright.
When you reach a roadblock in the insurance claims process, sometimes legal maneuvers are the only way around it. Hiring an experienced Chicago car accident attorney provides you with the knowledge and resources needed to discover your legal options and pursue them to the fullest extent of the law.
Hiring the Right Advocate Is a Must
It’s easy to find a personal injury attorney in Chicago and the surrounding area. It’s not easy to find one that has the experience and knowledge necessary to prove your case.
Look for an attorney that has years of representing car crash victims behind them and one who has built a good reputation within the local community. Having a record of proven personal injury case successes is also essential. Do not be afraid to ask questions of any car accident attorney you are considering; remember that they will be working for you and your family.
You Need Langdon & Emison
When you have suffered serious injuries as the result of a car accident in Kane County, DuPage County, or anywhere in the Chicago metropolitan area, call (312) 855-0700 or contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation.
We can help you settle with the insurance company and, if needed, take your case before a judge. Call today to learn more about your legal options.