Do I need a lawyer to file a personal injury claim?
Injury claims which can be easily settled with the insurance company or which do not cause severe or lasting injuries may be resolved without legal help. If the insurance company is refusing to settle a claim in good faith, if you have severe injuries or if there are complex legal rules involved in your particular personal injury claim, it may be time to talk to a personal injury lawyer.
If, however, you have been offered a fair settlement offer, there may not be a reason to hire a lawyer. Getting a personal injury attorney involved in you injury case will reduce your recovery by at least 33 1/3 %. So if your only reason to hire a lawyer is to win a windfall or get compensation to help you get unnecessary medical treatment from plaintiff friendly doctors, this strategy may be counterproductive and slow the judicial process for other claimants, who really need help.
So when do you need an injury lawyer?
If your accident has caused injuries which will affect your physical capabilities or appearance for over a year or permanently, an injury lawyer may be needed to calculate the full cost of your injuries. Additionally, if you have severe injuries which will generate substantial loss of income or high medical bills, you might need help getting adequate compensation.
Finally, if you have a medical malpractice claim and you have suffered injury due to unprofessional or incompetent treatment at the hands of a doctor, nurse, hospital, or clinic the complexity of the case may require you to hire a personal injury lawyer.
How do I pay for my personal injury lawyer?
The good news is an injury lawyer works on a contingency fee basis. So, unlike other lawyers who require a retainer to begin working your case, an injury lawyer will only be paid if you win your personal injury lawsuit. This is good news for many plaintiffs who do not have enough money to hire a lawyer, but could make it more difficult for others, who do not have a strong case, to find a lawyer to help them. Personal injury lawyers will not take personal injury cases they know they cannot win.