Hire a Personal Injury Attorney Right After Your Accident
When you suffer an injury at the hands of another person, it can create anger and frustration about the sudden changes you experienced, and confusion about what comes next. If your injuries are severe, you could end up facing a lifetime of physical challenges. Even with minor injuries, your life could be disrupted, leaving you with questions.
Whether a careless driver or a slippery floor caused your injuries, you might be entitled to compensation under the law. Your injuries may require medical attention and ongoing medical treatment, none of which are cheap. You should not bear the burden of covering these expenses if you did not cause the injury.
If you or a loved one has suffered a personal injury, discuss your options with a trusted personal injury lawyer today. With the right guidance, you can get back to your regular life without having to worry about how to pay your bills.
Causes of Personal Injuries Vary
Personal injury is a legal term used to describe when a victim suffers an injury from a negligent, reckless, or careless actions of another. These injuries often affect the victim’s life negatively by prohibiting their ability to live their normal life. While these injuries could be unintentional, someone’s act or failure to act is usually the root cause.
Nearly 30 million people visit an emergency room each year after suffering unintentional injuries. Causes of personal injuries vary and can range in severity.
Common causes include:
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Workplace accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Dog bites
- Criminal activity
No matter what caused your injuries, your life could be uprooted as a result of someone else. You might not go back to work temporarily or maybe even permanently. This can hinder your ability to earn a living and pay your medical expenses.
Speak with an experienced attorney as soon as possible after you suffer injuries. This could help you recover every dollar you deserve so you do not have to pay out of pocket for your medical bills. The sooner you act, the more likely it is that you make a complete recovery.
Five Steps to Take Right After Your Injury
The steps you take immediately following your injury can play an important role in your ability to recover from your injuries.
While car accidents are the most common cause of personal injuries, these steps can apply to any accident where you may have suffered an injury.
- Call 911. Get immediate medical attention, even if you think your injuries are minor. When you call 911, emergency medical personnel will arrive at the accident scene to render medical attention. Do not refuse their help. They may uncover injuries you did not know you had because your adrenaline is running high and masking the pain. Calling 911 also sends police to the accident scene. This is important because the police will create a police report, detailing the accident. While they may not assign fault in their report, they will interview everyone involved and speak with witnesses to get a good picture of what caused the accident. This report can become extremely beneficial in your personal injury claim.
- Take pictures and speak with witnesses. Whether your accident involved a car crash, a workplace incident, or a slip and fall at the market, taking pictures can be helpful. Pictures could show the entire accident scene and give your lawyer a good image of how the accident happened. You also want to speak with witnesses. Many witnesses will not wait around for the police to arrive, so you at least want to get their contact information. Your legal representation can speak with them later. Witnesses will forget what they saw, and it is so important that your legal team speak with them as soon as possible. Witnesses can also provide perspective on the seconds leading up to your accident to help show you were not at fault.
- See your doctor. Receiving medical attention at the accident scene can be extremely helpful. You may even be transported to a hospital for further evaluation. But after that, you should also see your regular doctor. They could determine how your body has changed since the accident and what hurdles you may face in your recovery. Your doctor would keep detailed medical records which might be helpful in your personal injury claim to show the struggles and the suffering you endured on your path to recovery.
- Keep a personal injury journal. Your path to recovery may include setbacks and hurdles, especially if you suffer from severe injuries. Over time, you might forget these setbacks and the pain you endured during your recovery process. While that is good, you could increase your chances of recovering compensation by using a daily journal to show how you suffered during your path to getting better.
- Contact an Attorney. When you suffer a personal injury, you deserve legal representation with proven experience helping accident victims recover every dollar they deserve. Your ability to return to your regular life could depend on your ability to recover maximum compensation for your injuries. Not all law firms are created equal, and you should not trust this responsibility to just any lawyer. Get the help you need today.
Damages You Could Collect
Even car accidents where victims suffer minor or invisible injuries can cause extreme financial stress. These accidents could generate medical expenses above $10,000. The more severe your injuries, the more likely that number continues to rise. When you factor in non-medical expenses, that number could quickly reach six digits.
To help overcome this burden, your lawyer may try to get you compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Lost earning potential
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Present and future medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
Your ability to recover these and other damages may hinge on the legal team you choose to represent you. It is important to note that, in most cases, the bulk of the financial needs after an accident will come in the future. This means that all the medical bills you see sitting on your kitchen table do not necessarily represent the full value of your claim.
Your lawyer could help you understand what you will need to make a full recovery. Together with your lawyer, you could create a more accurate estimate of your future financial needs, medical expenses, and lost income. When you spend a great deal of time off of work because of your injuries, you will miss out on the income you would have otherwise received.
If that is no fault of your own, you should not bear that burden. Over half a million American families file bankruptcy each year because of extreme medical expenses. Your lawyer could help you avoid becoming part of this statistic.
While most personal injury claims come from automobile accidents, criminal activity can cause them, too. You may have suffered injuries from a gunshot, mugging, robbery, or any other criminal act. If the perpetrator is caught, the state attorney may bring charges against the alleged criminal.
But that criminal legal case, even if it finds the perpetrator guilty, will not provide you with the monetary compensation for your injuries that a personal injury case would. Only a personal injury claim gives you the chance to recover every dollar you deserve.
The faster you get in touch with a skilled personal injury lawyer, the faster your personal injury claim can be resolved. Part of your ability to physically recover depends on your ability to shed the legal stress and worry. When you hire a personal injury lawyer, you could focus your effort and energy on your physical wellbeing while they take the lead in addressing your legal concerns. At the same time, your lawyer can work hard to aggressively protect your rights and maximize your financial recovery.
Many accident injury victims mistakenly believe that insurance companies always look out for their best interests. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Soon after your accident, the insurance company representing the at-fault party in your accident may contact you with a quick settlement offer. This might be exciting; you may want to take the offer and put this experience behind you so you can get on with your recovery.
Unfortunately, the insurance company may only be looking out for their best interest and their bottom line. They may not want to pay the full value of your claim. They might simply want to make you go away for as little money as possible by offering a quick settlement offer.
They might also hope you do not have a lawyer to review the settlement, because your lawyer could assess this offer and tell you if it is fair. But, if you sign the settlement offer, you waive your right to bring any future claim against the insurance company for this accident. That means that months or years later when the settlement funds have run dry, you cannot bring a claim for more damages and may end up paying out of pocket for your medical expenses and financial losses.
You and your family deserve better. Let an attorney help you collect every dollar you deserve so you do not have to worry about your financial situation until you are back on your feet.
Different states have different timelines you need to meet to file a personal injury claim. In Florida, you only have four years from the date of the accident to bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault party.
While four years might seem like a long time, think of everything you might face during that time:
- Extended hospital stays
- Multiple surgeries
- Extended time out of work
- Multiple doctor visits
- Prescription drug costs
All of this can happen during the recovery phase immediately after your accident. This may take your focus away from your legal claim and your ability to recover damages. That is why you should consider getting a strong legal representative to help you recover the compensation you need to get better. Pass the legal stress and worry onto your chosen personal injury attorney. Your lawyer would have your best interests at heart.
Not only do you have legal deadlines to meet in your personal injury claim, but you also want to act quickly so your legal team can speak with witnesses before they forget what they saw. Recalling the accident can become challenging for some people, and you want your personal injury attorney to speak with them while he or she can still find them. While you focus on your physical wellbeing, your attorney can work hard to look after your financial wellbeing.
Choose the Right Representation
The legal representation you choose could make a difference in your personal injury claim. Do not trust this responsibility to just anyone. You need a lawyer with experience standing up to big insurance companies without backing down. The goal of personal injury attorneys is to get their clients every dollar they deserve. Let an attorney help you.
When you work with a lawyer, they can investigate your accident, review police and medical records, speak with witnesses, hire experts, negotiate with insurance companies, and defend your rights at trial. While most personal injury claims do settle out of court, sometimes insurance companies refuse to settle for a reasonable and fair amount.
That is why you should choose a lawyer with personal injury trial experience. An attorney can begin trial preparation right away, while hoping that the claim does not have to go that far. If it does, your attorney could go to trial on your behalf.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries through no fault of your own, speak with a trusted personal injury lawyer today.