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If you’ve recently been injured in a car accident, you may – very understandably – be wondering whether you need to speak with a lawyer about your situation. If you haven’t sustained any injuries and your car only incurred minimal property damage, you may be able to successfully manage this low-stakes situation without professional legal guidance. However, if you’ve been hurt, anyone with you at the time of the crash was hurt, and/or the damage to your property was substantial, you’ll want to schedule a free consultation with a lawyer in your area. Similarly, if your crash was at-all work-related, you’ll want to speak with a lawyer right away about a very time-sensitive potential opportunity to receive compensation.
Speaking with Insurance Representatives
As an experienced Glendale, CA car accident lawyer – including those who practice at Glotzer & Leib, LLP – can confirm, pursuing a fairly-valued insurance settlement can be a complicated and stressful process. Insurance companies are for-profit enterprises, so they do what they can to minimize payouts to accident injury victims. As a result, it’s generally a good idea for accident victims to allow a lawyer to negotiate with these entities on their behalf. Attorneys understand the tricks and tactics utilized by the insurance industry in an effort to minimize their own liability. By speaking with insurance representatives on your own, you may find that your claim has been devalued or rejected for a reason that could have been prevented had you allowed an attorney to speak for you.
Pursuing Personal Injury Damages
If another’s negligence, recklessness, or intentionally dangerous conduct contributed to the cause(s) of your crash, you’ll want to speak with a lawyer about filing a personal injury lawsuit. In California, car accident injury victims remain empowered to seek economic and noneconomic damage awards from others whose conduct directly contributed to the source(s) of their harm, even if those victims were also partially responsible for their injurious circumstances.
Because of the complexities of the legal system, and the experience of any attorney hired by the at-fault party to represent their interests, you won’t want to file a personal injury lawsuit on your own. Unfortunately, it is just too difficult for self-represented litigants to secure a fairly-valued damages award without the assistance of an experienced professional advocate. This is one task that you won’t want to DIY.
Applying for Workers’ Compensation Benefits
If your crash occurred while you were engaged in work-related activities, you may be in a strong position to apply for workers’ compensation benefits. A benefits award will cover medical bills, lost wages, and other qualifying costs. Unlike the civil claims process, workers’ compensation isn’t a fault-based system. Therefore, you may remain entitled to collect these benefits even if your crash was your fault. Because this opportunity for compensation is notoriously time-sensitive, don’t wait another day to speak with a lawyer if you may be entitled to receive these benefits in the wake of your crash.