Surviving a motorcycle accident will always be a good thing, but being involved in one can be a traumatic experience. It can drastically change the course of your life and may even have long-term, irreversible consequences.
Recovery can be difficult because you are not only dealing with the physical pain but also with mental and emotional distress. Pursuing a personal injury claim can make things even worse, especially if you are dealing with it on your own.
This is where a lawyer comes in. With all the legal complications that you will inevitably face, it is better to have an expert by your side. If you are not convinced yet, here are five reasons why you should hire a lawyer after a motorcycle accident:
• A lawyer is an expert in handling legal matters.
• A lawyer can file a personal injury claim on your behalf.
• A lawyer is in charge of documentation and negotiations.
• A lawyer can represent you in court.
• A lawyer allows you to focus on recovery.
Why should you hire a lawyer after a motorcycle accident?
There are two obvious reasons why you should hire a motorcycle accident lawyer after your crash: to ensure that your legal rights are protected and to increase your chances of getting fair and full compensation. But there are also other reasons that many victims overlook when dealing with their motorcycle accidents.
1. A lawyer is an expert in handling legal matters.
For sure you will have plenty of questions about how to proceed after your motorcycle accident, and while consulting Google is a good start, it cannot give all the answers you need. Lawyers spent a huge portion of their lives studying the legal system, so there is no one else more qualified to answer your questions but them.
2. A lawyer can file a personal injury claim on your behalf.
While you are not required to enlist legal help in filing a personal injury claim, initiating one can be complicated and daunting especially for someone without prior experience and knowledge of the legal system. But with a lawyer by your side, this burden will be taken off of you.
Depending on the facts of the case, your lawyer can also tell if your personal injury claim will be settled or taken to court. If you are unsure about how to proceed, a qualified personal injury lawyer will help clarify things.
3. A lawyer is in charge of documentation and negotiations.
It is also your lawyer’s responsibility to gather evidence related to the motorcycle accident. Whatever information is retrieved, your lawyer can use it to strengthen your case and prove that you are not at fault.
There are several ways by which your lawyer can obtain data relevant to the case. These include compiling police reports and medical records, speaking to witnesses, reaching out to the at-fault party’s insurance provider, contacting the manufacturer of both vehicles involved in the crash, and collecting photos of the accident scene.
It is possible to reach a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance provider and get compensation from them, but it will be a tedious task should you decide to do it on your own.
While it is the responsibility of your insurance company to coordinate, it is not the same case for the insurance company of the at-fault party. And since many insurance companies are notorious for offering victims the lowest settlement amount possible, seeking legal help becomes even more crucial. With a lawyer, you can negotiate a better deal and demand fairer compensation.
4. A lawyer can represent you in court.
Your lawyer’s help does not stop once the claim has been filed. If the worse comes to worst, your lawyer will also represent you in court. Many motorcycle accident victims try to avoid this because trials come with additional stress, but if attempts at settlement fail, at least you are not alone in the process.
5. A lawyer allows you to focus on recovery.
Recovery is not just letting the physical injuries heal. Aside from the physical pain, you also need to recover from the emotional, mental, and financial distress your motorcycle accident has caused you.
Hiring an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer can help alleviate some of the sufferings you are going through. Not only does it free up some of your time, but it also allows you to focus on getting better.
When should you hire a lawyer?
Getting a lawyer as soon as possible is crucial because of the statute of limitations. This law gives both parties involved in a motorcycle accident a certain amount of time to initiate legal proceedings from the date of the accident.
Depending on the state in which your accident happened, you will have two to four years to seek legal action before you run out of time.
Although the deadline might be extended due to some exceptions, most of the time, you cannot file a personal injury claim once the statute of limitations ends. This is why it is necessary to hire a lawyer immediately to ensure that you can file a claim within the given timeframe.
However, seeking the help of a legal professional may be more urgent in some instances:
• If you are suffering from severe injuries
The more severe your injuries are, the more expensive the costs will be. Serious injuries also mean that your recovery could take a while. Both these factors can influence the timeline of your case, and since higher medical expenses could mean bigger compensation, settlement negotiations or trial can take longer.
Moreover, many motorcycle accident cases only begin once victims have recovered enough to be able to participate in the legal process. This does not happen soon though, especially to victims who are severely injured.
With a lawyer, it may be possible to speed up the process because someone else will now handle the paperwork and deal with the legal intricacies while you recover.
• If you are dealing with an uncooperative insurance company
It is rare to find an insurance company that will offer a fair settlement to a motorcycle accident victim. If you find yourself in a situation where an insurance company is pushing for staggered or low settlements, your lawyer should be able to sort this out by taking over negotiations.
• If you are uncertain of who is responsible for the accident
In many cases, it can be difficult to identify who is responsible for a motorcycle accident. Sometimes, it is obvious; sometimes, it is not. There are also instances where multiple parties could be liable.
With a lawyer, you will have someone to help determine and prove who is behind the accident, so the sooner you hire a lawyer, the sooner the facts of the case will become clear.
What qualities should you look for in a lawyer?
Your lawyer can make or break your motorcycle accident case, so before hiring one, here are some of the qualities you should look for in a lawyer:
The more experienced your lawyer is, the more likely he or she can handle the unique demands of your case. If you want to win your legal battle, hiring a lawyer who has a proven track record and won many cases should be a top priority.
A lawyer’s reputation will tell you everything there is to know about how your case will be represented, so getting a lawyer with a good reputation and established history of achieving favorable verdicts should mean positive results for you as well.
Hire a lawyer that is committed to getting the best settlement offer possible or winning the trial. Doing this will ensure that the lawyer you choose is focused on building a strong case and succeeding in it.
The law is all about justice, and a lawyer with integrity who believes in fairness can help you approach the legal process in the most objective way possible. As a result, you will have an airtight case that is likely to get a favorable verdict.
Accidents are unique and so is each lawyer’s personality. Whatever the case is, finding a lawyer you can get along with is just as crucial as meeting the other qualifications on this list.