After an accident, you might be wondering how to settle a car accident claim without a lawyer. The decision of whether to obtain legal support or go without it is yours. But it’s important to be well informed about personal injury cases and what attorneys can do before you make the choice.
Below, we’ll discuss common reasons that individuals choose to go without an attorney and examine whether hiring a personal injury attorney is worth it. Whether you’re on the fence about hiring an attorney or are against the idea of getting one, this piece is filled with helpful information as you plan the next steps in your claim.
Why people settle a car accident claim without a lawyer
One reason people search for answers about how to settle a car accident claim without a lawyer is the belief that a lawyer will cost too much. With medical bills accumulating and other expenses looming, the financial burden of a legal team may feel out of reach. But there is good news. Personal injury law firms often charge what is called contingency fees. This means you do not pay:
- Hourly fees
- A retainer
- Any fees before the case is settled
Instead, you pay a percentage of the settlement money to the lawyer once the case is finished. At Will & Will Law Firm, we offer a “no fees unless we win” policy. This means that you do not pay anything until you are awarded settlement money or win in a trial.
Another driving force for proceeding without legal representation is thinking that a lawyer is unnecessary for a certain case. The danger in this mindset is that a seemingly simple claim can quickly turn into a complicated situation. Insurance companies often underpay those injured in auto accidents using manipulative tactics.
When you are injured in a car accident, an insurance company is thinking about their bottom line. How little can we pay this person to make the claim go away? A personal injury attorney has experience negotiating with insurance companies. Working without legal representation leaves you vulnerable to attacks from insurance companies. But a skilled attorney can make an insurance agency pay you what you are owed.
Is Hiring a Lawyer a Path to More Settlement Money?
You might picture a lawyer as unnecessary, but the reality is that a legal professional can provide results you would not achieve alone. To understand how much a personal injury attorney can help you, consider the analogy below.
Alex does not know much about the stock market, but he can start investing on his own. Alternatively, he can enlist the help of a skilled stockbroker who advises him about what stocks to buy and sell.
It is possible for Alex to make money in the stock market by himself. But with limited knowledge, he may miss out on a golden opportunity or even lose money due to a beginner’s mistake. With a skilled stockbroker to guide him, Alex’s earning potential increases, and he’s warned about potential mistakes. Yes, he had to pay for the stock broker’s services. But because of the broker’s help, Alex makes more than he would have on his own.
In the same way, you can represent yourself in a car accident claim without a lawyer, or you may choose to retain a skilled personal injury attorney. The attorney has a deep knowledge of the laws surrounding personal injury claims and can advise on the best course of action.
Without an attorney, it’s possible to make a mistake that leaves you with less settlement money. That may be why a survey of those injured in auto accidents found that those who hired an attorney collected an average of 3.5 times more in settlement payments than those who did not. In short, a personal injury attorney increases the likelihood of a higher payout.
A personal injury attorney can:
- Explain the laws surrounding pain and suffering damages and develop a solid case in your favor
- Ensure that you are operating within the time frames laid out by state law
- Gather evidence that is vital in proving your claim
- Negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf
- Help you maximize compensation even if you were partially at fault in the accident
I Was Injured in a Car Accident. Now What?
Instead of thinking about how to settle a car accident claim without a lawyer, consider the compensation you could miss out on if you move forward without legal assistance.
A trustworthy attorney will sit down with you and examine your situation to lay out the available options. You have no obligation to move forward with a legal team after meeting with them. But having the support of legal experts takes the burden off of your plate and sets you up to maximize the amount of payment you can recover.
Will & Will Law Firm brings you a legal team with over 35 years of experience. We are dedicated to getting you the best results possible and will fight for you at each step in the process. Browse a list of common car accident questions for more information and contact us to learn how we can be of service to you.