You may want to speak with a Philadelphia car accident injury lawyer if you or a loved one have suffered from catastrophic injuries, wrongful death, or when you think your insurance settlement offer is too low. They can offer you an opinion on the currently known facts of your case and what it might take to get the amount of money you deserve. A lawyer will only offer their legal services if they believe it will add financial value to your case.
In This Article
Philadelphia car accident injury attorney, Brad V. Shuttleworth, Esq., explains what cases might be good candidates for representation, how hiring a lawyer can help, and other helpful details. We wrote this post to help injury victims or their loved ones get general information surrounding Pennsylvania personal injury laws.
Do I Have a Car Accident Case?
It is not always necessary to hire a car accident lawyer after an accident; However, some situations warrant legal representation. The general rule is to call a lawyer as soon as possible if specific elements are present.
We often encourage the general public to play things safe and get a legal opinion before contacting the insurance company to file the claim.
You may want to contact a car accident injury lawyer if you have experienced any of the following:
- Construction or work accidents
- Hit-and-run accidents
- Inadequate settlements
- Insurers acting inappropriately
- Pedestrian or cyclist involvement
- Police report inaccuracies
- Receiving blame for your injuries
- Unclear fault
If any of the above-referenced situations apply, a lawyer should be contacted as soon as possible. In Pennsylvania, a personal injury claim must be filed within two years of the injury date per 18 Pa.C.S. § 5524. Other notification deadlines may apply as well.
While this period may seem like plenty of time, valuable evidence can be lost or destroyed within that time. You will also need to call upon eyewitnesses before their memories fade or move to another place. Therefore, accident victims should contact a lawyer as soon as possible, even if they are still considering their legal options.
6 Advantages of Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer
A car accident victim may experience several physical and financial losses after a collision. Time missed at work, medical bills, and mental anguish all take a toll on an individual and their ability to enjoy life. Further, it is challenging to concentrate on your physical recovery when you are left to deal with aggressive insurance adjusters.
Hiring a lawyer offers several advantages, including:
- Advantage 1. Skilled Negotiations: Insurers do not always play fair. Legal representation from an experienced Philadelphia car accident lawyer can quell this behavior. Your lawyer must ensure that the insurance company acts in good faith and honors your rights.
- Advantage 2. No Legal Mistakes: Your lawyer will avoid all legal mistakes during representation by ensuring that forms are submitted correctly and on time to support a more favorable outcome. When documents are incorrectly filed, or necessary paperwork is not submitted promptly, lengthy delays can occur, preventing you from receiving the money you need.
- Advantage 3. Timely Filings: A car accident lawyer will ensure that you do not miss any critical deadlines. Injury victims may have only a short time frame to bring a claim, so your lawyer will work quickly to meet these deadlines while fighting for fair compensation.
- Advantage 4. Legal Resources: Car accident lawyers have a deep bench of legal and financial resources. We utilize these resources to add value to your case, including experts, analysis, and legal knowledge. They allow us to demand full compensation for your losses.
- Advantage 5. Contingency Fees: Most automobile accident lawyers work on a contingency basis. Thus, you are not obligated to pay anything until they win or settle your case. After an accident, any injured individual can seek justice, not just those with financial means after an accident.
- Advantage 6. Investigative Expertise: Lawyers have extensive experience investigating automobile accidents. Accident recreation teams, forensic specialists, and other experts are often employed to identify all liable parties, including those not mentioned in police reports, such as the car manufacturer, the municipality responsible for maintaining the roads, and more.
Car accidents and their subsequent injuries are traumatizing for anyone. A serious injury can easily alter the course of your entire life and lead to permanent disabilities. If you were injured in a Philadelphia car accident, you should seek the assistance of an experienced law firm as early as possible and take advantage of their resources and experience if you decide to work together.
What to Expect from Your Initial Meeting with a Lawyer
Consider working with a personal injury lawyer offering Free Consultations. It is an opportunity for you to learn about your case, relevant laws, and potential legal options. We highly recommend that you request an initial consultation as soon as possible after your accident since a “wait and see” approach can lead to legal mistakes and a subsequent loss in the awards you would otherwise receive.
Bring Existing Evidence
You will have a better experience if your prospective lawyer has as much information about your case as possible. Do not try to hide information or facts since these discoveries will come out during the investigation. Even if you believe you made a mistake, avoid making any assumptions since an examination can reveal a deeper level of negligence by the other driver than previously thought.
Make sure your meeting runs smoothly by providing your lawyer with the following information:
- Contact information
- Financial documents
- Insurance information
- Medical receipts
- Medical records
- Photo or video evidence
- Police reports
- Witness information
- Other relevant documentation
If you are far too injured to gather this information, call upon a friend or family member to assist you. Your lawyer can also arrange to obtain this information initially when severe limitations exist. Prospective clients who hire an attorney can also expect the law firm to obtain additional evidence that speaks to the facts of your accident injury case.
Related Article: Is There a Time Limit on Personal Injury Claims in Pennsylvania?
What to Expect When Filing a Car Accident Injury Claim
Once you have met with your lawyer, they will investigate all aspects of your case and begin negotiating with the insurer. We typically issue initial Demand Letters that delineate the details of your accident, injuries, and more. You will receive a copy of these communications, and your lawyer will keep you apprised of any new developments.
Here are a few other details to keep in mind:
Personal Injury Claims Are Not Lawsuits
Personal injury claims are distinct from personal injury lawsuits. In a personal injury claim, you will deal with the at-fault driver’s insurance company in an attempt to settle your case out-of-court. Unfortunately, insurance companies do not always see the facts, which means that your case could become a lawsuit if you believe that is the most practical move for your case based on our findings.
Your Philadelphia car accident lawyer will handle the negotiations for you. Nevertheless, if you cannot resolve the issue with the insurance company, you may need to file a civil lawsuit against the negligent party. A law firm will never file a lawsuit on your behalf without your authorization.
No Upfront Lawyers’ Fees
Money is not a barrier to legal representation when hiring Shuttleworth Law. Our firm handles cases on a contingency fee basis and does not get paid for our time, attention, and resources until you win your case. Otherwise, you owe us nothing.
Schedule a Free Case Evaluation With a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer
You do not have to take an unfair settlement for your injuries and subsequent losses. Get in touch with the legal team at Shuttleworth Law for a Free Case Evaluation by calling (215) 774-1371 or messaging us here.