Should I Get a Lawyer for a Car Accident in West Virginia?
In general, you should always consult with a lawyer to see if you have a case regarding your recent auto accident. Most reputable personal injury law firms offer free consultations in order to determine if you have a solid car accident case which dictates whether they will be willing to take it on. In your case evaluation, an experienced attorney can offer you legal advice and will usually tell you whether you stand to gain by pursuing a lawsuit.
When to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer in West Virginia
In almost all situations, a personal injury attorney can negotiate a significantly higher settlement for you than an insurance company will offer and they can use their expertise to thwart any attempt by insurance adjusters to avoid paying you at all. A personal injury lawyer will ensure that you receive the maximum compensationamount possible.
Circumstances in which you should absolutely hire a West Virginia car accident attorney include but are not limited to:
- You are seriously injured in the car crash, or a loved oneis killed in an accident. The more seriously you are injured, the more money you are entitled to as compensation. Serious injuries can include anything that causes severe pain, like broken bones, lingering joint injuries, spinal injuries which can have long-term effects, any injury that requires surgery or hospitalization, burns, brain injuries, and so forth. If a loved one was killed, you may be able to file a wrongful death claimand be compensated for end-of-life costs, emotional damages, and so forth.
- You are not sure how serious or long-term your injury might be. It’s often hard to gauge how serious an injury is right after it occurs. Some car accident injuries may seem like they will resolve quickly, only to linger and cause you long-term pain and suffering. A car accident lawyer will help you identify the right specialist for your medical treatment and hold the auto insurance companyaccountable for covering the cost of your entire course of treatment, even if it’s lifelong.
- You cannot pay for medical expenses on your own. If you feel that you will not be able to pay for your medical bills and all of your other crash-related expenses, the insurance company is not offering you a fair settlement.
- You missed work as a result of the crash and/or you cannot return to work as a result of your injuries. Insurance adjusters often tend to conveniently forget about this aspect of a car accident victim’s experience, and they fail to offer fair compensation to properly cover your lost wages.
- The car insurance company attempts to blame you or does not take your injury seriously. Adjusters may attempt to gaslight you into thinking your injuries are not that serious or have only worsened as a result of something you did or did not do after the car wreck. Their goal is to pay out the least amount of money possible, and some less scrupulous insurance adjusters may use these types of tactics to take advantage of you.
- The at-fault driver was uninsured or underinsured. If the other motorist has insufficient insurance coverage, it can complicate the insurance claimgreatly, but remedies for this situation are available. A car accident lawyer can help you untangle the case and file a successful injury claim.
Is it Worth Getting a Lawyer for a Car Accidentin West Virginia?
It certainly can be, especially if any of the above bullet points describe your situation. An experienced West Virginia attorney will ensure that you receive fair compensation that covers your medical bills, any property damage, other costs associated with the accident, and any punitive damages that are assessed against the other parties.
As we’ve mentioned, insurance companieswill do whatever they can to avoid giving you any money at all, so if you need compensation in order to financially survive a motor vehicle accident, your best bet is to file a personal injury claim with the help of an attorney.
Why Choose Kaufman & McPherson PLLC?
If you’ve been in a car wreck in the State of West Virginia, our attorneys at Kaufman & McPherson law firmare ready and eager to fight on your behalf for a substantial and fair settlement. Our lawyers have years of experience handling accidents of all kinds, including car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and commercial truck accidents. Contact us today for a free consultation.
Why You Should Hire a Car Accident Lawyer
Although you can choose to represent yourself against a team of professional attorneys who work for the insurance company, you will more than likely be steamrolled into accepting a tiny settlement or have your injury claim denied altogether.
Careful Investigation of How, Who, and How Much
A car accident lawyerhas the resources to conduct a thorough and careful investigation, whereas the accident victim may be busy recovering physically and emotionally during the period immediately after the car crash. An attorney will also know exactly what to look for in terms of how the accident happened, who is at fault, and how much compensation you are entitled to.
Negotiation Conducted From a Position of Strength
A car accident attorney is removed from the accident and can remain unemotional and authoritative over the course of the car accident case.
Skilled Trial Advocacy
The average person can easily be taken advantage of by opposing lawyers in the court of law. Allow us to be your professional advocate and fight on your behalf.
Waiting Costs Money
The longer you wait to file a suit, the more expenses pile up and less likely you are to win a large settlement. Don’t wait!
Car Accident Lawyer FAQs
The aftermath of a car crashcan be turbulent and confusing. Here are some common questions that we get from clients.
How much is a motor vehicle accident settlement?
The exact settlement amount will depend on the severity of the car accident victim’s injuries, whether the other motorist was under the influence or being negligent, and so forth. If you suffered a serious injuryor are filing a wrongful death claimfor a loved one, you may win hundreds of thousands of dollars.
What if the car accident wasn’t my fault? Should I still get a lawyer?
Yes, if any of the bullet points listed above describe your situation.
How long does a car accident lawsuit take?
At a minimum, a car accident case will take a month or two, but depending on the severity of injuries and the number of parties involved, it can take multiple years to be completely resolved.
How much does a lawyer charge for a car accidentin West Virginia?
The industry standard is about one-third of whatever the final settlement amount is if the case is resolved through negotiation, and slightly more if litigation is required. The insurance industry’s own studies show that represented parties on average get bigger net recoveries than unrepresented parties, even after accounting for attorney fees.
How long do you have to get a lawyer after a car accident?
According to West Virginia law, the statute of limitations on car accidentsis two years, so with some exceptions, you have only two years from the date of the accident to hire a lawyer and initiate a lawsuit. However, there are many things an attorney will want to make sure are done before a suit is filed, so the sooner the better.
What do you do in a minor car accident?
Even in a minor car accidentsuch as a fender bender, it is a good idea to call the police and have a report generated. This is especially important if the accident resulted in an injury or death, a driver fled the scene after the crash, a driver was under the influence, the damaged vehicle requires a tow truck, or a commercial vehicle was involved. Whether an accident report is prepared or not, you should still get the other motorists’ insurance and contact information.
How can I maximize my car accidentsettlement?
There are a few steps you can take immediately after a car wreck that can help you maximize your eventual settlement amount. Preserve any evidence that you can gather, file a police report of the accident, and seek medical attention as soon as possible after the accident. Additionally, consult an attorney as soon as possible and avoid speaking to insurance adjusters, making any statements, or signing any forms regarding the accident until your attorney has advised you on what to say. Finally, seek representation for your case as soon as possible after the crash to ensure the best results.
Contact Kaufman & McPherson Today for a Free Case Evaluation
At Kaufman & McPherson, the majority of our cases are personal injury cases and car accident claims. We have years of experience handling these types of cases specifically and a track record of success. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.