A personal injury case could cover a wide variety of situations. For example, you might have been injured in a car accident, become hurt from using a company’s products, or been bitten by someone’s dog. All of these are considered personal injury, and you might be tempted to handle your own case depending on the circumstances and severity of the damages. In some cases, however, it makes more sense to hire a South Carolina personal injury attorney to protect your rights and pursue compensation. If you are undecided about what direction to take, consider these questions and your answers before you make your final choice.
How Serious Were Your Injuries?
If you only suffered minor scrapes from your accident, had no property damage, and didn’t miss any time from work, there’s a good chance that you won’t need a personal injury attorney. However, anything more severe and you will probably benefit from legal representation. If you were forced to seek medical treatment, there is a chance that you could have unpaid medical bills and the need for future care. Some injuries even result in long periods of lost wages and permanent impairment, which can signify substantial damages in a personal injury case. When these factors are present, you should seek the counsel of an experienced personal injury attorney.
Was Your Injury Caused by Someone Else?
If your injury was caused or even potentially caused by the negligence of another party, it’s important that you consult with a South Carolina personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Few parties admit fault in the case of a serious accident, and you may be entitled to legal remedies and damages that aren’t immediately obvious. If your case isn’t strong from the start, you want a skilled South Carolina personal injury attorney in your corner that can immediately begin working to investigate your accident and gather evidence to prove your case.
Are Insurance Company Representatives Calling You?
Most accidents of any type are going to involve insurance companies. Those companies have adjusters or claims representatives on staff that investigate claims and work to reduce the company’s loss payouts. While some of the adjusters may seem nice, they aren’t working in your best interests. If these adjusters are contacting you, asking for a recorded statement about the accident, or requesting that you sign a medical records release, you should consider consulting with a personal injury attorney about your case.
When an insurance company takes your recorded statement or asks you for a blanket medical release, they are looking for several things. First, they are attempting to get you to admit some level of fault in the accident. Second, they will look through your past medical records with the goal of blaming your current injuries on a pre-existing condition. Your best strategy is to speak with a South Carolina personal injury attorney before dealing with insurance company representatives.
Has Your Claim Been Denied or Have You Been Given a Low Settlement Offer?
Even if you believe that the issue of fault is clear in your case, don’t be surprised if an insurance company finds a reason to deny your claim. These companies are in the business of making money, so they try to avoid paying out large claims and settlements whenever possible. If you have a legitimate case, but the company sees that you aren’t represented by counsel, they might try to issue a denial and hope that you’ll give up.
Let’s assume that your claim is accepted because there was just no way for the insurance company to issue a denial. In this case, you might find that the insurance company is eager to settle your case for much less than it is worth. This is another red flag that should send you directly to the office of a South Carolina personal injury lawyer, who will make sure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
Do You Understand South Carolina Laws and the Settlement Process?
Personal injury cases can be complicated and confusing matters. Not only will you need to understand your state’s laws, but you’ll also require a good grasp of the settlement process as well as some strong negotiation skills to achieve a fair settlement. If you aren’t confident in your abilities in these areas, it’s best to consult with an expert in personal injury cases.
If you’ve been injured in an accident, contact our experienced South Carolina personal injury attorneys at the offices of Peake & Fowler to discuss your case. Call our office today at (803) 788-4370 to schedule a free consultation to learn more about our services and how we can help you seek recovery.