Can I settle a car accident without a lawyer?
When You Can Handle Your Car Accident Case Alone?
Mention a personal injury lawyer to the average person and you’ll get a reaction that is, to put it mildly, negative. (Don’t worry, we don’t take it too personally.) However, if you’ve been injured in a crash, you may have considered calling an attorney for advice about whether or not you should settle a car accident with the insurance company.
In many cases, accident victims can work directly with insurance adjusters to reach settlements on their own. It’s usually more cost-effective to negotiate simple claims yourself. Here are a few circumstances where you probably don’t need to call a lawyer about your accident.
Your Accident Bills are Less than $2,500
Accidents that result in very little damage are usually pretty easy to settle with insurance companies. If your out-of-pocket expenses don’t add up to $2,500, it might be worth it to keep it between yourself and the insurance adjuster.
Your Injuries Were Minor
You probably don’t need to call an attorney if your injuries were minor and the EMS personnel who examined you at the scene released you without further treatment. If nothing was broken, you didn’t need surgery, and you didn’t suffer permanent damage, your claim is probably fairly simple and likely won’t require you to seek a high dollar amount.
The Other Driver Admitted Fault
When the other driver admits fault, you only have to prove to the insurance company that you suffered damages that were caused by their client. For simple claims, this may be as simple as presenting evidence like photos of your injuries and property damage, urgent care bills, or other documents.
There Were No Aggravating Factors
Simple accidents that don’t involve criminal acts are often easy enough to settle with insurance adjusters. Criminal acts like driving drunk or texting while driving are aggravating factors that may enable car accident victims to seek punitive damages. It can be difficult for car accident victims to negotiate for this kind of compensation on their own.
The Insurance Company Approved Your Claim
Learn to take yes for an answer. While it’s true that the insurance adjuster will probably try to lowball you, making a reasonable counteroffer is often effective in getting your bills covered.
When Should I Contact a Lawyer to Help Settle a Car Accident?
Insurance claims become more complex as car accident victims try to collect higher amounts of damages. They may be seeking compensation for medical bills from surgeries or speculative damages to pay for a permanent disability. They may become overwhelmed by the insurance company’s demands for prior medical records and other documentation.
In these cases, it may be best to find a good personal injury lawyer to help settle a car accident. Attorneys have experience negotiating for higher damages and can put pressure on insurance companies to avoid litigation.
Our personal injury attorneys are ready to determine what damages you may be able to collect and whether you would benefit from pursuing these damages on your own. Contact our Asheville car accident lawyers today for a free initial consultation.
Related Posts from Our Asheville Car Accident Law Blog:
- Do I Have a Personal Injury Case?
- Investigate a Car Accident Using Your Smartphone
- Can I Get a Settlement in My Concussion Case?
- Who is Responsible for Paying My Medical Bills After a Car Crash?
- Why Do Car Accident Claims Fail to Settle?
Attorney Lakota R. Denton is a Personal Injury Lawyer in Asheville, NC who proudly to assists clients that have been injured through no fault of their own, or due to someone else’s negligence. A graduate of the New England College of Law and a former partner at Minick Law in Asheville, Lakota is a recipient of the 2014 “top 40 under 40” award from the National Association of Trial Lawyers and is a member of North Carolina Advocates for Justice. Lakota and his staff are committed to helping injured persons to get the compensation they deserve. For more information, contact our office.