What To Consider Before Handling Claim Without Lawyer’s Help

  • October 11, 2021

What are the reasons for and against the decision to dispense with the act of hiring a personal injury attorney?

Questions for the possible client to consider:

Do you feel that you could advocate for yourself? Would you be able to assert yourself during an argument over a contentious issue? Lawyers receive training on how to be assertive without appearing overly aggressive.

Are you confident that you did not suffer any severe injuries? Once a claimant has settled with the other side, he or she must sign a release form. Once that form has the claimant’s signature, the insurance company becomes free of responsibility for any new symptoms or any complications, most often as a result of the chosen treatment.

Have you determined the cost for any property damage? Have you found that cost to be rather low? Questions about who was at fault might arise, if you sought a large amount of money for damaged property.

Would you have the patience to stick with negotiations? Lawyers have learned how to negotiate, without becoming discouraged by the amount of time that it takes for attainment of an agreement. Many claimants become impatient, and agree to settle, when their compensation could have been larger.

Another factor that should not be overlooked, if the reported accident put more than one person at-risk:

Suppose that a family were returning from a vacation. The driver has stopped at a red light. Suddenly, another driver comes from behind and hits that stopped family car, with all of its occupants. How could the adults in the vehicle be sure that all of the younger occupants had managed to escape uninjured?

If the adults were unharmed, could that fact be used as the basis for assuming that everyone else had escaped any injury? If the adults did make that assumption, then would it make sense for them to dispense with taking any children to a doctor’s office?

The answer to the both of the questions pose above is “no.” Any of those younger occupants might have a condition with delayed symptoms. The insurance company would not honor a complaint about an injury that did not show up right away, unless the victim had seen a doctor. Then the medical report could support a claim that the symptoms were slow-to-appear.

Moreover, by working with a personal injury lawyer in Wheeling, a client that had any children with a possible injury could seek an extension of the deadline for filing, as stated in the stature of limitations. That should allow more time for any serious problem to manifest itself. The added material in the medical record could support a report about new symptoms. The insurance company could be held responsible for a worsened condition.