Accident victims in Reno often ask, “When should you hire a personal injury attorney?” In most cases, injured victims should retain the services of a personal injury attorney as soon as they realize they may have a claim. Although it is common for insurance companies to make settlement offers soon after an accident occurs, these offers are rarely enough to compensate victims for their losses. After an accident, you should consider hiring a personal injury attorney if your injuries are severe, your insurance claim was denied or delayed, or you are dissatisfied with the settlement offer or the way the insurer is handling your case.
What Are the Top Reasons to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
If another person’s negligence caused you harm, there are many benefits to retaining a personal injury attorney. The most obvious benefit is that an experienced attorney can help you understand your legal options and ensure your rights as a victim are protected.
Additionally, a personal injury lawyer has access to various resources, including accident reconstructionists and medical experts, that can help identify the cause of your accident and testify to the severity of your injuries. An attorney can gather evidence and ensure it is preserved, interview witnesses who may have information about your accident, and gather and review relevant documents and records. Your personal injury lawyer attorney may also be able to identify additional defendants in your case.
Another reason to hire a personal injury attorney is that a lawyer may be able to negotiate with insurance companies more effectively, increase the amount of your recovery, and resolve your case more quickly via a settlement.
Preparing the Demand Package
The settlement process begins with preparing a demand for the negligent party’s insurance carrier. A demand is a written letter that explains your theory regarding the other party’s liability. Additionally, a demand includes a list of your injuries and any losses you suffered. The package also includes a demand for payout. Preparing a demand is a time-consuming process because of the amount of documents that need to be collected. If your case involves complex legal issues, a demand should address the arguments you intend to assert. A well-prepared demand package can be a strong tool that can help you obtain a favorable outcome.
Maximizing Your Settlement
Retaining an attorney also causes the negligent party’s insurance carrier to treat your case more seriously. Unrepresented litigants also do not know how to effectively negotiate with insurance companies. This is because unrepresented victims do not know the true value of their claims. A personal injury attorney can use his or her training and knowledge to effectively negotiate a favorable settlement on your behalf.
Representing You in Court
Some cases cannot be resolved via a negotiated settlement. When insurers refuse to agree to fair settlement amounts, cases need to be litigated in court. Rather than battling it out on their own in court, many accident victims depend on their personal injury lawyers to help them navigate the legal system. A personal injury attorney will prepare your case for trial, retain expert witnesses who may provide testimony in court, and prepare effective legal and factual arguments on your behalf.
What Qualifies as a Personal Injury?
You may have a personal injury claim if you suffered an injury due to another person’s negligence. Personal injury covers a wide range of cases, including:
- Car Accidents
- Truck Accidents
- Motorcycle Accidents
- Premises Liability, i.e., slip and falls
- Medical Malpractice
- Birth Injuries
- Insurance Bad Faith
What Is Insurance Bad Faith?
Insurance companies have a legal obligation to treat people honestly and fairly. This is known as acting in good faith. Bad faith insurance occurs when an insurance carrier arbitrarily refuses to settle a claim. If an insurance company refuses to settle because they have a valid reason for denying a claim, e.g., an eyewitness that can provide testimony that absolves them of legal liability, they are not acting in bad faith. Bad faith occurs when an insurance company denies or delays a claim without a valid reason for doing so.
Finding A Personal Injury Attorney
Knowing how to find the best Nevada injury attorney can help improve your chances of winning compensation after suffering a severe injury. Many resources are available that can help you find the right lawyer for your case. Most people search for an attorney online by performing a Google search. Others rely on referrals from friends or family members. Additionally, if you have previously hired an attorney who practices another area of the law, you can ask that person to refer you to a reputable personal injury lawyer.