How Soon Should I Call an Attorney After a Car Accident?
There’s always a lot to do in the aftermath of a serious collision. Besides getting treatment for your injuries, you might also have to arrange alternative transportation, domestic help, and child care. If your injuries have left you sidelined from work, you may have to find a new way to pay your bills virtually overnight.
With so much on your plate, it’s easy for your personal injury claim to become an afterthought, but putting off your consultation with an attorney could prove to be a costly mistake. Read on to learn a few reasons why you should speak with a car accident lawyer as soon as possible:
1. Critical Evidence May Not Be Available Indefinitely
New York follows a no-fault system when it comes to car accident claims, but there are scenarios in which victims can pursue compensation from the parties who caused their injuries. For example, you can bypass the no-fault system if you sustained what the state considers to be a “serious injury.”
If you intend to file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company, you’ll have to prove he or she was liable for the accident. And whether you file a first- or third-party claim, you’ll have to prove the types of damages you incurred and their value.
Some of the most important evidence to strengthen your claim may be time-sensitive. For example, if the wreck was captured on surveillance cameras, the owner of that footage might erase it shortly after the crash. Eyewitnesses might change their contact details, and vehicle damage may get repaired before it can be documented. It’s essential that your attorney is able to investigate your case while this evidence is still available and unaltered.
2. The Insurance Company’s First Offer May Be Unfair
Your lawyer will handle all correspondence with the opposing party from day one. Until you have representation, though, the insurance company will contact you directly, and they may offer an early settlement before you know the full extent of your injuries.
If you accept this offer but your medical bills and lost income turn out to be more costly than expected, you might have to cover the difference out of pocket. By hiring an attorney right away, you won’t be coerced into accepting a low payout.
3. There Are Countless Ways to Jeopardize Your Case Inadvertently
At the end of the day, it’s fairly easy to make a mistake early in the claims process that will hurt your chances of recovering a fair settlement. Your personal injury lawyer can help you avoid critical errors such as discussing your case on social media, providing a recorded statement, and failing to mitigate your damages.
Call 716-855-3761 for a Free Consultation with a New York Car Accident Attorney
If you were hurt in a motor-vehicle collision through no fault of your own, you may be entitled to compensation for the resulting damages. To determine if you have grounds for a claim, contact LoTempio P.C. Law Group.
Our attorneys have more than 200 years of combined experience. Call 716-855-3761 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free case evaluation with a car accident lawyer in New York.