After you’ve been injured as a result of someone else’s negligence, you may be confused about what to do next. You may be wondering if you should hire a San Francisco personal injury layer, or just try to negotiate a settlement directly with the responsible party. You should know, however, this may not only be difficult, but time consuming as well. In addition, without legal representation, you may end up with a settlement that is unfair and far from reasonable.
During a time when you should be focused on recovery, it’s best to let an experienced personal injury lawyer handle your case. They can explain your rights and make sure they are protected during this stressful time. If you are able to seek compensation for your injuries, your attorney can see to it that your claim is pursued in a timely manner and fight to help you receive a fair recovery. Below you will find 5 ways a San Francisco personal injury lawyer can help you:
Advise You of Your Legal Situation
When you consult with an experienced San Francisco personal injury lawyer, they will be able to help you understand the legal aspects that surround your personal injury claim. Each case is unique and it takes a trained eye to evaluate the details of your claim. Is your injury permanent? Who was at fault for the accident? If it was an automobile accident, was the driver insured? Are you in pain? Are you entitled to seek compensation under California law? What is your case worth? These are just a few of the hundreds of questions you may have after being injured in an accident. A good San Francisco personal injury lawyer will tell you if it makes sense to go forward in small claims court, state court or to settle out of court.
Gather the Necessary Evidence
An attorney will be able to obtain any additional evidence, statements or other information that will help your case. Attorneys know exactly what type of evidence to look for. They will locate and interview parties for statements, obtain medical reports, vocational evidence, police reports and more. Tasks like these would be almost impossible for someone who is suffering with an injury.
Negotiate on Your Behalf
If there is a dispute in your case or a settlement offer, your attorney will enter into negotiations on your behalf. Remember, insurance companies are professionals and they employ skilled negotiators who do not represent your interests. Most of the time, they have a financial incentive to settle your case for as little money as possible.
In addition, without representation, some insurance companies may tell you that they have conducted their own “investigation” and determined the accident was partially or totally your fault. Their conclusion may be incorrect. Without a trusted San Francisco personal injury attorney on your side, you may end up agreeing to compensation that does not cover your damages.
Help You Recover the Full Amount
A knowledgeable San Francisco personal injury lawyer can help you recover the available damages you’re legally entitled to. For example, without a lawyer to guide you through the process, you may not know that you can file a claim against your own auto insurance company for uninsured or under-insured driver’s coverage. Or, what if there are other people or companies who could be held legally responsible for your injuries? California personal injury law is detailed and complex. Without legal representation, you may not exercise your full rights under the law.
Handle Subrogation Claims
It’s a little known fact that many HMO insurance companies have clauses within them concerning the payment of your medical care after an accident. Known as subrogation, it goes like this: If you are injured in an accident and the HMO pays for your medical care, then you sue the responsible party and are awarded compensation…the HMO can simply take back whatever they paid toward your care out of that awarded compensation. They may even try to place a lien on the money you are awarded. Luckily, California has its own protections against these liens and an experienced San Francisco personal injury lawyer can help you handle the subrogation claims of your HMO.
If you have been injured in an accident, contact Bay Area personal injury attorney Nelson C. Barry today. You don’t have to face this situation alone. Call us today at (415) 587-0550 and schedule your free case evaluation.