Almost everyone experiences an auto accident at one time or another. But once both cars come to a complete stop and you introduce yourself to the other driver, it can be tempting to simply exchange insurance information, shake hands, and go your separate ways. But is this wise? By not contacting a legal expert, you could be opening yourself up to certain legal dangers later down the road. Let’s break down whether you should hire a lawyer after a car accident in every circumstance.
Are You Legally Required to Hire a Lawyer After an Auto Accident? Call the Police?
Technically the answer to this question is no, but failing to do so can present some unnecessary risks.
You can always opt to represent yourself rather than hire an attorney. For example, if you get involved in a car accident and want to sue the other driver for damages, you don’t have to hire an auto accident lawyer. The same is true if you are sued for an auto accident.
Likewise, you don’t technically have to call the police if the damage isn’t too bad and both parties agree to just exchange information. The potential problems that could arise by failing to call the police to the scene and obtain a report are numerous. The most pressing concern that we have seen far too many times in the past is when the other driver who was at-fault changes their story after the fact when reporting the accident to their insurance carrier. This could complicate things for you and lead to their insurance carrier denying your claim.
The best practice is to always call the police immediately following an accident. You could then call an attorney from the scene who can give you important advice and calm your nerves. The lawyers at Hunter Law, P.A. are always ready to take your call following an accident at 844-ASK-GINA (844-275-4462).
Benefits of Hiring an Attorney
Even though hiring an attorney isn’t legally mandated, it’s still a good idea because of several key advantages (especially if you wish to sue for compensation).
Assess Losses and Potential Fault
For starters, auto accident attorneys can help you assess any potential losses or damages you may have suffered during an accident. It can be tough to know just how much an at-fault driver may be on the hook for, even if you can only see superficial damage on your vehicle.
Perhaps more importantly, legal experts can determine who may most likely be at fault for an accident after getting your eyewitness account. In this way, they can determine whether you have a strong case for a lawsuit or if suing is inadvisable.
Because of this benefit, lawyers can save you money on fruitless cases that may not be worth your time. They may also let you know if damages are highly recoverable based on the circumstances of your case.
Explore Legal Options
Even beyond the initial aftermath of an accident, auto accident attorneys can help you explore your legal options, including:
- Dealing with the insurance carriers
- Assisting you in getting the best treatment for your injuries
- Calculating your damages and presenting a demand to the insurance carrier(s)
- Filing a lawsuit, if need be.
Handling all of these options in determining the best course forward can be difficult, if not impossible, alone. But knowledgeable car accident attorneys can point you in the right direction and let you know what your likelihood of success is for each potential decision.
Negotiate with Insurance/Other Legal Parties
No matter what you decide, you’ll need to contact the other driver’s insurance in order to establish a claim and attempt to get paid for your damages.
Speaking to insurance representatives or a legal team working for another driver can be nerve-racking and very difficult. This is doubly true if you don’t know what to look for or what to say over the phone.
You can relieve yourself of this burden and get back to your life by hiring car accident attorneys to take care of all this for you. Any resulting lawsuit may also be more effective since your attorneys will know what to say and how best to navigate any complex situations.
Acquire Police Reports and Other Evidence
Should you decide to sue another driver, your legal team will help you acquire police reports – which are unbiased accounts of the accident – and gather other evidence accordingly.
Gathering evidence is highly important since it determines:
- How likely it is the judge or jury will side in your favor
- What points your attorney team can make when presenting your side of the accident
- Allows you to make the best, most informed decisions regarding your case
But it’s tough to know what evidence you should gather and where to look. Auto accident attorneys are experienced in all of these aspects and will know who to call, what evidence to collect, and how to present the evidence effectively in court.
Acquire Maximum Compensation for Damages
Lastly, hiring a lawyer after a car accident is advisable if you want to secure as much compensation as possible.
Say that your car is totaled and you suffer personal injuries at the hand of an at-fault, negligent driver. You may need hundreds of thousands of dollars or even more to pay for medical bills and replace your lost vehicle.
If you want to maximize your chances of getting those damages, you’ll want experienced car accident attorneys on your side. They can:
- Present your case persuasively and efficiently
- Show that the accused driver is ultimately at fault for the accident and should be responsible for paying for medical bills
- Convince a jury to give you the maximum payout possible for your case
Contact Hunter Law Today
As you can see, there’s no reason not to contact a legal expert if you’re involved in a car accident, whether it’s a fender bender or a more serious crash.
Auto accident attorneys can provide major benefits to any lawsuit that may or may not occur. Even in the best circumstances, attorneys can also help you contact insurance providers, file police reports on time, and more.
Tampa drivers should contact Hunter Law today. As experienced Tampa personal injury and auto accident attorneys, Hunter Law is ready and able to help with your accident case ASAP. We treat each of our clients like family and every case we take on is a matter of personal importance for us.
Contact us today for a free consultation and more information. We can also be reached via phone at 844-ASK-GINA (844-275-4462).