Should I sue or not? What are my responsibilities after an accident?
Attorneys at TheLawFirm.com are often contacted by people with a legitimate case but who are uncertain if they want to “sue”. Many times this is because people are uncertain about the cost or they think that hiring a personal injury attorney will mean that they will have to go to court or do a lot of work on their case.
As you will see, our job at TheLawFirm.com is to do all the legal work in accordance with the highest legal and ethical standards. Although each case is different, the following are some primary responsibilities of an injured party.
First, you need to obtain proper and immediate health care. Beyond just looking after yourself, which is the most important thing, it will be difficult to convince an insurance adjuster or a jury that you had pain or injury but chose to suffer in silence rather than seek appropriate treatment. Also, by not obtaining adequate health care or by returning to your normal work and other activities too soon, the defense may claim that you failed to comply with your duty to mitigate damages. This is the duty imposed on an injured person to prevent his or her injuries from becoming worse. Failure to mitigate will mean that the defense argues that they should not be financially responsible for some, or all, of your pain and suffering.
You also have a responsibility to not discuss the accident with anyone other than your lawyer and your doctor(s). If anyone questions you about your case, tell them that you’ve been instructed not to discuss your case. Refer all inquiries to us.
Do not sign any document about your case without discussing it with us first. This is especially true if the document was generated by an insurance company.
Send us copies of all bills you incur from the accident, even if your own insurance company is paying them.
Notify us immediately when your doctor has released you from further care and when you have returned to work.
Notify us immediately if you have a change of address or phone number.
Let us know if you are going to change your doctor or need additional care or treatment.
So, if you do these things, will it be necessary to go to court? Although it is impossible to make any guarantees, most cases settle out of court. This saves everyone the stress and expense of trial. And, as attorneys who charge a contingency fee, we are motivated to get the best possible settlement in the shortest period of time.
In order to settle your case, if that is possible, we have responsibilities too. Many of the efforts expended by TheLawFirm.com may seem sporadic. This means that you may not hear from us on a regular basis. This doesn’t mean that we leave you uninformed about your case. But it does mean that almost all of the work done on your behalf is done without directly involving you.
Initially, we may verify how the accident occurred and establish who was at fault. This could include obtaining witness statements, photographs, police reports, medical reports, or hiring an investigator in order to gather whatever evidence is necessary.
Second, we need to know that your physical condition has stabilized. Hopefully, you are released from your doctor and able to go back to work. At that point we begin assembling medical reports, records and bills, employment reports and other items necessary to document the totality of your damages. This process takes time since some health care providers and employers are slow in responding to our requests for information.
In automobile accidents, the next step is usually to write a demand letter to the defendants insurance company. This often causes delays since the case may be reviewed by a number of insurance company adjusters. There are often several offers and counter-offers made at this stage. As offers are received, you are contacted and the pro’s and con’s of the offer are discussed with you.
If we are unable to obtain a fair settlement with the insurance company through negotiations, we will file a lawsuit and/or demand arbitration. The defendants typically have a short period of time (usually thirty days) from the time they are served in which to file their response to the lawsuit. Sometimes there are several defendants and some may be difficult to locate or serve. Sometimes one defendant will bring other defendants into the lawsuit. These things cause delay.
After each defendant has filed their respective ‘answer’ to your complaint, discovery proceedings are started which may include depositions of parties, witnesses and experts. We assist and instruct you at every step and utilize the same discovery tools to substantiate your claim. You may have to answer questions in a deposition. We will help you prepare for this. Discovery can be very time-consuming and expensive depending upon the complexity of the case.
After discovery is completed, a trial date is requested. The assignment of the trial date is completely beyond the control of TheLawFirm.com because it is dependent upon the Court docket.
It’s important to understand that having an experienced lawyer handle your personal injury case will increase the chance that you are properly compensated. But it also relieves you from directly dealing with insurance companies and other parties involved after a serious injury.
If you have been injured due to the negligence of another, don’t hesitate to contact TheLawFirm.com for more information.
Please contact us at 1(855) 464-0808 or for a free legal evaluation of your claims today!
Click For A Free Consultation!
TheLawFirm.com’s award winning lawyers have been featured in over 50 radio and television interviews including:
Real lawyers, real results!
no recovery, no fee!