Facebook Icon.     LinkedIn Icon.

I was in a car accident – Do I need to hire a lawyer? 

Feb 4th, 2021

Amy N. Rogers, Esq.

Car accidents can be very traumatic experiences. In addition to the physical pain and emotional trauma of an accident, trying to figure out how to navigate the insurance companies and different types of insurance categories following a collision can be confusing and really stressful. So how do you determine whether you need to hire a lawyer? This article provides some questions and considerations that you should consider when deciding whether to hire a lawyer. In any case, it is always a good idea to call and consult with a lawyer when deciding whether or not you need one. Even if you decide not to hire a lawyer, it is better to make that decision with as much information as possible, to ensure your rights are protected.

Were you at-fault for the accident?

The first question of whether to hire an accident lawyer is asking whether you or someone else was at fault for causing the collision. Often times, the police department will respond to the scene of the accident and conduct an investigation as to who was at fault for causing the accident. However, the results of any police investigation is not necessarily the be-all-end-all analysis of who is at fault for the collision. If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident due to no fault of your own, you may have a valid motor vehicle claim and should consult with a lawyer regarding liability, or in other words, who is at fault for causing a motor vehicle accident.

Are you injured?

If you were injured in an accident, it is important to make sure that you are assessed by a medical professional as soon as possible after the collision. Insurance companies like to try to blame the injured person for not getting medical care if he or she delays in getting to a physician. It is a good idea to get a medical evaluation as soon as possible after an accident if you are experiencing pain or if you believe you were injured in the crash. You may not realize you were hurt immediately after the crash, sometimes due to the adrenaline of the crash itself. If you get into an accident, and then shortly thereafter you develop pain that you attribute to the collision, it is better to be safe than sorry and put your health first by making sure you get checked out.

Do you need ongoing medical care?

The next question that you will need to answer in considering whether you need an attorney after getting a medical evaluation is determining whether you require any future or ongoing medical care. If you suffer a serious injury for which you require ongoing or lifelong medical care, it is extremely important to understand the nature and extent of your injury and any medical care that you will need as a result. If your medial doctors or other medical professionals are recommending ongoing medical care, you may want to consult with a personal injury lawyer to make sure that you are fairly evaluating your personal injury claim arising from the car accident.

Do you have work or wage loss?

When you are injured in a motor vehicle accident, and your injuries cause you to lose money from being unable to work or due to your injuries causing you to not be able to do your job, that is a significant issue. Not only will you incur economic losses from the medical bills from your past and future medical care, but you will also incur future economic losses from not being able to work or from losing your job. Consulting with an attorney can help to ensure that your claim for damages from the motor vehicle collision is not unfairly valued by an insurance company.

Is there insurance coverage for the accident?

If you get injured in an accident due to no fault of your own, then the insurance company for the other person who was at fault for causing the accident is liable. The insurance company for the at-fault driver is the “bodily injury” motor vehicle insurance carrier, otherwise known as the “liability carrier.”  In Colorado, every person is required to carry at least $25,000 of coverage per person, and up to $50,000 total per collision, in “bodily injury” liability insurance coverage. However, if you suffer serious bodily injury in a motor vehicle accident, the minimum Colorado policy limits is likely not enough coverage to compensate you for your damages. It is important to understand your own policy limits of Underinsured/Uninsured Motorist insurance coverage so that you know the total amount of insurance available that will cover you after getting hurt in an accident. If you have any questions about car accident insurance, you should consult with an attorney.

Are you confident in navigating the insurance process?

Insurance companies are trained to delay, deny, and defend car accident claims. There are a variety of tactics that insurance companies will employ in order to avoid fairly paying settlements to victims of car accidents. Remember, there are also time limits for how long you have to bring a claim after getting hurt in an accident, so it is important that you are aware of and certain of the statute of limitations in your case. If you have any concerns about navigating the insurance process or negotiating with insurance companies, you should consult with a personal injury attorney to make sure your claims and rights are protected.

Contact Us With Questions.

We know that it can be very confusing and frustrating to navigate the insurance process following a collision, especially if you are hurt or injured. We would like to help you evaluate your claims. If you have any questions, please fill out our contact form or give us a call at (303) 592-5900.