If you want an advocate by your side who will protect your rights from the beginning, then you should call a lawyer after a car accident. When you make your initial call, you will first speak with a representative who will assess your case and determine if the firm is a fit for your legal needs.
A lawyer works for you with your interests in mind and can guide you through the process of pursuing the compensation you need for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering due to your injuries.
On top of your pain from any injuries, you may have many concerns and questions in the wake of an accident. Consider some important steps you can take to ensure that you tend to your health and give yourself a good foundation for an insurance claim or legal action.
The first thing you should do—even before calling a lawyer—is to seek the medical care you and your loved ones need. Your health and safety are of the utmost importance, so you may want to prioritize these matters above all else.
A healthcare provider can treat your wounds and create medical records that can later be used as evidence in a personal injury lawsuit.
You should begin documenting what happened. Report the accident to the police, who will create an official crash report that can serve as evidence. Also, start collecting your own evidence. You never know what might be useful in your personal injury case.
Take photographs of the crash site, your injuries, the damage to all vehicles involved, and the surrounding environmental conditions. Collect the names, contact information, and statements from witnesses and those involved in the crash.
Once you have reported the accident and received the medical care you need, you can call a law firm. When you begin working with a lawyer, they can advise you of your rights and options for pursuing compensation. The sooner you contact an attorney, the sooner they can start looking out for you.
When you retain a lawyer to represent your interests after a car accident, you are gaining an ally in the process of pursuing compensation. They will investigate what happened, use this information to negotiate with insurance companies, and even advocate for you in front of a judge or jury if need be.
Your lawyer will investigate the circumstances surrounding your crash. They will find out what happened and how it happened. This investigation includes looking into all of the contributing factors of the crash, examining any available accident reports, video of the accident scene, or assembling witness statements. They will collect this evidence and compile it into the strongest possible case for your compensation.
Even if you were partially responsible for the crash, that does not mean you cannot pursue compensation. According to 735 ILCS 5/2-1116, Illinois law operates based on principles of contributory negligence. This means that as long as your lawyer can show that other parties are more responsible for what happened than you are, you can still seek compensation.
Armed with this evidence, your lawyer will then try to negotiate with the negligent driver’s insurance company. Often, insurance companies may try to offer you less than the amount you could be owed. Insurance adjustors often want to keep their costs (and therefore what they pay you) as low as possible.
Your lawyer works for you, not the insurance company. Because of this, they will negotiate for what they believe you are actually owed. If the insurance company will not offer a fair settlement, your lawyer will see the case through to the end—in a courtroom if necessary.
Your lawyer will advocate for your rights in a courtroom if need be, arguing your case before a judge or jury. Sometimes these cases receive a verdict, awarding a certain amount of money to you. Other times, once the lawsuit process begins, the insurance company sees fit to settle. Either way, your lawyer will do what is necessary to seek what you are entitled to receive.
The sooner you contact us, the sooner we can get started working for you. According to 735 ILCS 5/13-202, you generally only have two years after an accident in which to file a personal injury lawsuit, so your time is limited. This is one important reason why you should call a lawyer after a car accident to protect your rights.
Speak to a team member from The Kryder Law Group, LLC today at (312) 223-1700 for a free case review. We are proud to serve victims of injury in Chicago.