Right after a car crash, you may feel too dazed to take action. If you are physically capable, your immediate step should be about calling 911. Check if you can help an injured passenger, driver, or pedestrian. Next, call the local law enforcement. All car accidents that result in injury, death, and property damage (worth $1,500 or more) must be reported to California DMV within ten days. You should also notify your insurer within a reasonable time. In the next couple of days, consider finding a reliable Palmdale, CA auto accident law firm. Working with an accident attorney has many benefits. Here are some real reasons to seek legal representation after a car crash.
You have suffered serious injuries
California is a fault state. If the other driver was speeding, reckless, or negligent in any manner, you could file a lawsuit seeking compensation for your injuries. If your injuries are severe and can impact your ability to find work or live a normal life, your eventual compensation should be more than just about medical bills. Your attorney can help investigate the crash, determine fault, and determine the true worth of your claim.
You have a share in the fault
California is a pure comparative negligence state. Even if your share of fault is more than 50%, you can still recover compensation from the driver at fault. However, your compensation will be reduced by the percentage of your fault. For example – If you were given $10,000 and had a 5% share in fault, you can only recover $9,500. In such circumstances, the other driver’s insurance company will try to negotiate a lower settlement, and without a lawyer, you may end up with a raw deal.
Insurance companies do not play fair
It is obvious that insurance companies do not want to pay huge settlements. As such, their claims adjusters often adhere to bad faith insurance tactics to deny or delay claims. Let your lawyer take over if you don’t want to deal with the insurance adjuster directly. Attorneys can see through insurance strategies and negotiate a fair settlement. If the matter cannot be resolved through negotiations, your attorney can even take the case to trial.
If you are working with an accident lawyer for the first time, make sure they have experience with similar cases. Most personal injury attorneys in CA work on a contingency fee, and therefore, you don’t have to pay the lawyer immediately.