Unfortunately, people are injured in accidents every day. What happens next will have serious consequences as to how well they will recover, and their ability to achieve the compensation they need to be made whole. There are a number of misconceptions about how accident cases are handled and resolved. Dramatic television shows have portrayed shady “ambulance chasers,” and insurance companies advertise themselves as looking out for your best interests.
You need accurate information for dealing with something as important as how to proceed after being injured in an accident. Your best chance for successfully resolving a personal injury case is to know the difference between fact and fiction.
Myth 1: People with insurance don’t need personal injury lawyers.
This is False. Having insurance is better than not having insurance (and frequently a legal necessity). If you have insurance, then the company is likely to cover some costs related to your accident. However, it is important to remember that when insurance company representatives settle a case, they are representing their company. Their goal is to pay out as little as possible on a claim. In contrast, a personal injury lawyer represents you.
Once an insurance company negotiates a settlement agreement, then no additional costs will be paid under any circumstances. If the settlement amount doesn’t cover all costs associated with the accident, you do. Accepting too low a settlement can burden you with many out of pocket expenses.
Myth 2. Personal injury cases take forever to resolve.
This is False. The time it takes to resolve personal injury cases varies from less than a year to three years or more.
The duration of the case depends on numerous factors. For example: A slip and fall accident, involving less than $10,000 compensation, in a jurisdiction with a light docket or with a defendant anxious to settle, is at one end of the spectrum. A medical malpractice case for serious bodily injury, involving millions of dollars, where the docket is busy, and a defendant is unwilling to settle, will take much longer.
With serious injuries, the maximum medical improvement or firm prognosis might not be known for some time. For these more complex cases, your patience is valuable. Acquiring the best compensation for your claim is worth whatever time it may take.
Myth 3. I can hire a personal injury attorney any time after an accident.
This is False. Two situations make this false. First, if you agree to accept a settlement offer through your insurance company, then that settlement is final, and no further compensation can be awarded. Second, in most jurisdictions, a relatively short statute of limitations applies. You lose your right to bring a case if you wait longer than the statute of limitations to proceed.
It is very important to consult with a personal injury attorney before discussing the case with an insurance representative. An insurance representative may use comments you make to them to justify a low settlement. Don’t be caught unawares.
Chester County Personal Injury Lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC Will Represent Your Best Interests
We have a track record of success and many years of experience representing injured plaintiffs. If you or someone you love sustained personal injuries in a pedestrian accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact our Chester County personal injury lawyers at McCann Dillon Jaffe & Lamb, LLC at 215-569-8488 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Our lawyers represent clients in Pennsylvania, including Delaware County and Chester County, as well as in Delaware, and New Jersey.