Accident Lawyer: Should I Get a Personal Injury Lawyer?
You’ve been hurt in an accident involving automobiles, motorcycles, dog bites or burns, and you may be wondering:
- Will an accident lawyer be worth it?
- Are my injuries really that bad?
- Was it my fault?
- How can I handle so many medical bills?
- Are the physical, emotional, career and psychological damages worth a court battle?
- Do I really want to sacrifice the time and energy it takes to pursue financial compensation for my losses?
- What if I was in an Uber/Uberx accident?
Maybe you’re thinking about just letting it go. Moving on with your life without looking back.
Still, the burning question remains: Should I get a personal injury attorney?
Let’s explore the whys and hows of seeking consultation from an accident lawyer.
Will an Accident Lawyer Be Worth It?
If you believe that another person’s actions or negligence directly led to your injuries or the death of a loved one, you’ll need legal guidance and support to get you through the tough times. An accident lawyer will understand how the system operates and will have a clear idea of the evidence required to win your case.
An accident lawyer will understand how the system operates and will have a clear idea of the evidence required to win your case.
The primary reasons an accident lawyer is worth your time and effort is because they:
- Are court-savvy and know how to get the maximum return for the least amount of effort
- Know exactly which evidence will be needed for your claim and how to gather it quickly
- Take the pressure off you, which allows you precious time to recuperate
- Help you understand the longterm costs of injuries like yours, so that you can request appropriate compensation
Contacting an accident lawyer immediately after the accident is in your best interest because this is the prime time to collect evidence and gather testimony. So if you’re on the fence, you could always err on the side of caution and at least receive an initial consultation.
Are My Injuries Really That Bad?
Typically, the severity of your injuries are determined by the:
- Kind of injury you received in the accident
- Amount of time it will take for you to regain normal functioning
- Amount of any present or future medical bills required regarding your injuries
There’re also clear guidelines that separate short-term, long-term and permanent disability.
1. Short-Term Disability
Short-term, or temporary, injuries can last anywhere from one day to three months. These can range from minor aches to incessant and debilitating agony.
2. Long-term Disability
Usually, long-term disability is the result of an injury that continues to affect your functioning for over a year. This can be recurring headaches, torn ligaments or chronic pain.
3. Permanent Disability
Permanent disability is when an accident impairs your functioning for the rest of your life. This type of disability can pertain to any part of your body or daily functioning.
With minor injuries and relatively insignificant losses, you can usually settle the claim on your own. If you have the time, energy and money to put towards addressing your claims, you can always opt to take it on yourself.
You may be addressing your claim with a judge, jury, your insurance company and/or the other party.
If, however, you endure suffering that lasts longer than a couple of days and/or demands medical treatment, you’ll probably want to find a good accident lawyer. Solid legal representation can mean the difference between alleviating the heavy burden of debt and drowning under the weight of it all.
Like any other business, insurance companies would like to avoid paying any more than they have to. Yours may use its own lawyers to discount or minimize your personal injury claims. This is where the right representation by an excellent accident lawyer can make all the difference.
Was It My Fault?
It’s not uncommon for victims to blame themselves for an accident. This is a natural human inclination that should be balanced out with the facts.
The truth is, most of us want to prevent conflict no matter what it takes. We may even convince ourselves that we did something wrong to avoid confronting someone else’s negligence or actions.
A good accident lawyer will be able to help you sort out the details with minimal stress for you. People don’t like conflict because they don’t like the toll it takes on their bodies. But with the support of a lawyer, you can get the results you deserve without excessive drama.
How Can I Handle So Many Medical Bills?
If you weren’t at fault in the accident, you may not have to. Medical bills can mount very quickly after an injury, and you might be able to have them paid in part or full.
Medical bills can include hospital admittance, surgeries, medical equipment and physical rehabilitation.
You may have amazing insurance. But even with the best of insurance plans, you’ll typically owe at least the deductible between $1,000 and $3,000 before the insurance will begin coverage. Still, you could be left with up to 50% of the original bills.
If you have inadequate or no medical insurance, you may be in even deeper still. A personal injury lawyer can help you get compensated for all of your medical expenses not paid by your insurance.
Are the Damages Worth a Court Battle?
Most personal injury cases never go to court. If you have a good accident lawyer, he/she can sometimes keep you out of the court room.
Many people easily notice the monetary consequences of a car wreck or other personal injury, but fewer fully grasp the non-monetary effects. Let’s take a look at the various ways you may be impacted by an accident:
- Car repairs
- Hospital stays, stitches, surgeries, etc…
- Time off work during the recuperation phase
- Possible loss of job due to recovery time
- Loss of future income due to disabilities
- Depleted savings during recovery period
- Cost of therapeutic care for mental, behavioral or physical concerns pertaining to the accident
- Long- and short-term physical
- Long- and short-term emotional
- Long- and short-term psychological
The Physical Consequences of an Accident can Include:
- Slip disc
- Torn shoulder
- Chronic pain
- Longterm eye or ear impairment
- Trauma to the brain
- Hemorrhaging of the brain
- Partial or complete paralysis
The Emotional Impact of an Accident can Include:
- Survivor’s guilt when a friend, family member or someone else dies in the same accident
- The “what ifs?” What if I had done something differently?
- Anger, rage or resentment turned either inward towards self or towards the person responsible for the accident
- Sadness, grief, and pain over the physical losses
- Relationship strain/social impact
The psychological impact of personal injury may include Post-traumatic Stress Disorder, phobias of driving or loud sounds, or other stress-related symptoms.
Tangible Losses Versus Intangible Pain and Suffering
Following an accident, you’ll experience the more tangible losses identified in the previous section. These include immediate medical bills, repairs, and counseling.
An accident also involves the more intangible pain and suffering due to various indirect losses. These can include the toll injuries take on your career, social life, intimate relationships, and isolation or abandonment fears.
We’ve already identified how the recovery period can affect employment. Beyond that, you may also experience limitations in what you’re able to accomplish at your job.
For instance, let’s say you’re a typist, and three of your fingers were broken in an accident. You may not be able to type up to your previous standards, even after your fingers have healed. Worse still, your typing speed might be cut in half, leading to an eventual loss of your job.
Another example would be if you have a relatively low-stress job that requires minor lifting, like carrying files down the hall of a dentist’s office. If your neck, back or legs were injured in an accident, you may not even be able to do this task anymore.
The need for belonging is a basic human need. Your social life is an important part of your life. It’s not a luxury, but a must-have.
Due to your accident, you may not be able to do the social activities you once enjoyed. You might have subtle symptoms that prevent you from socializing at gatherings, such as tinnitus, chronic pain or paralysis.
A common after-effect of a head or neck injury or whiplash is tinnitus, or ringing in the ears. Tinnitus can range from a low hum to a high pitched ring that makes it difficult to concentrate.
Imagine you’re trying to listen to your friend tell a story at a party, and your ears start ringing loudly. You’d have trouble concentrating and interacting with others.
Chronic pain from an injury can greatly dampen your enjoyment of a night out with friends, as well. You’re laughing with your best buds when all of a sudden a shooting pain makes it way up your leg. And it won’t relent.
Partial or full paralysis is a more obvious hindrance for your social life. If you’re an avid camper or skier, those activities are likely out of the question.
Another intangible consequence that can result from all of the above is extreme self-consciousness. When you’re used to your body working a certain way, adjusting to a new normal can be very hard.
Your most intimate relationships may be altered in a drastic way. Certain injuries can affect sex drive. Some accidents can result in Post-traumatic Stress Disorder as well.
You might have phobias, such as intense fear of driving or avoiding certain places that remind you of the place where you had your accident. Anxiety may be triggered in specific settings or by noises, which keeps you from wanting to go out on dates with your spouse.
You may feel insecure in a romantic situation if you are left with an unsightly scar across your chest. You may want to cover yourself.
All of these things are intangible and unmeasurable damages. A good accident lawyer will be able to give evidence if these affect your case, to get you the amount you’re entitled to.
Isolation and Abandonment Fears
Victims of personal injury sometimes believe that it’s best to hide away to take the burden off of family or friends. This is especially true if a person becomes paralyzed.
Isolation can create abandonment fears.
Will my spouse leave me? Will he/she want to stay with me through this? Will I be alone?
An accident lawyer will be able to communicate to the judge, jury or your insurance company the extent of these intangible damages.
Do I Really Want to Sacrifice the Time and Energy To Pursue Financial Compensation?
It can be easy to be intimidated by the time and energy you believe it will take to recover financial compensation for what you’ve been through. This is perfectly natural. But do the cons of getting legal counsel really outweigh the pros?
- An accident lawyer costs you money
- You’ll be required to recount your ordeal
- You’ll need to complete several interviews and answer questions
- You’ll need to provide evidence for your case
- You’re typically going to recover more money than you spend because lawyers take cases they believe they can win
- You’ll have an ally and receive support during this trying time
- You’ll receive excellent legal guidance and know exactly what to expect
- An accident lawyer will help you understand what your claim is worth (It’s probably more than you think)
- You can recover and get on with your life with a better peace of mind
What if I Was in an Uber/Uberx Accident?
In the case of an Uber or Uberx accident, you are entitled to receive financial restitution for injuries sustained while you were a passenger.
Some of the damages recovered can include:
- Post-accident counseling
- Hospital stays
- Wage loss
- Property damage
- Psychological trauma, mental or physical suffering
- Financial impairment due to a sustained disability
For Support on Your Healing Journey
As you can see, the losses for accident victims extend far beyond the scope of tangible impact. An accident lawyer can help you uncover all of the areas of your life affected by your accident.
If you’re ready to make that call, check us out at Babcock Partners. We stand up for victims so they don’t get a raw deal.
We believe that everyone deserves to be heard and to be compensated for their losses and the full worth of their claim. Let us help you help yourself today!
If you’ve been injured, Stephen Babcock of Babcock Partners is standing by to help you.
Your case — and your future will be our top priority. When we meet with you, we will review your case with you for free and after you hire us you will have Stephen’s 100% Client Satisfaction Guarantee.
Contact us today.
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