Whether driving to the office or going for a casual drive with the family, accidents can unfortunately occur at any time. No matter how conscious you are while driving, things can go wrong when you share the road with others. Given the frequency with which accidents occur, you should be prepared for what to do if you face a car accident.
Damage from a car accident varies from case to case. A car accident can leave some people seriously injured. In the most unfortunate cases, car accidents can be fatal. But for other more fortunate drivers, car accidents can be limited to minor property damage.
If you have been involved in a car accident, you may have two motives: to seek justice and to recover compensation for your financial losses, pain and emotional suffering. Car accidents can leave you hospitalized for days or months. They can result in chronic injuries requiring years of ongoing treatment. There is a chance of lost wages and permanent disability.
To obtain what is rightfully yours after a car accident, you can:
- Negotiate to obtain just compensation outside of the courtroom
- Proceed to litigation, allowing the court to decide any damages owed
Not every car accident is serious enough to warrant proceeding to court. Most small accidents are resolved outside the court between the parties; however, sometimes negotiations outside the court are unsuccessful and litigation becomes necessary.
Why You Should Consider Consulting a Personal Injury Lawyer
Even if you consider settling your case outside the court, you must consult with a Personal Injury Lawyer Naples residents trust to handle their legal matters. Car accident cases are complicated. You may not be aware of how much your case is worth. This may lead you to settle for less than you deserve.
Insurance companies will often try to settle for a lesser amount of damages than what it would actually take to make you financially whole. Therefore, it is essential that you consider consulting with an experienced personal injury attorney before you decide to accept any offer of settlement.
Your personal injury attorney will help you estimate the value of your case based on damages such as:
- Vehicle damage
- Property damages belonging to individuals in the vehicle
- Wrongful death
- Current and future lost wages
- Pain and emotional suffering
- Loss of consortium (deprivation of family relationships)
- Medical treatment
An experienced attorney will analyze the evidence to closely approximate the amount that you should claim through your legal action for the car accident.
When You Should Consider Settling a Car Accident Case Outside of Court
If you believe that there was not much damage caused and it is worth settling privately, you can do so. It is, however, recommended to consult a lawyer to be on the safer side. It is also advisable to report the accident. Depending on the circumstances, if you fail to report an accident, it might lead to serious legal consequences and could later affect your car insurance premiums.
Even if both parties involved in the accident agree to not report the accident, you should not rely on the other party. While it is legal to privately settle a car accident claim, in many cases you still must report the accident to appropriate authorities.
You can consider settling the accident claim if:
- Both parties agree on settling – To begin with, both parties must agree not to file a lawsuit, at least not right away. Following an accident, both parties must agree to negotiate liability and the value of damages caused outside the court.
- The accident has not caused severe damage – If your accident did not cause much damage, it may not be cost effective to file a lawsuit. In most car accident cases, compensation for damages are settled between parties without the added costs of litigation.
- If it has not left you severely injured – If the accident has not caused severe or fatal injuries, you may want to consider settlement. If, however, there were serious injuries that will require long term medical treatment and disability, you may not be able to avoid filing a lawsuit.
If you are considering settling a car accident case, you should consult an experienced Naples Car Accident Attorney to ensure that you are doing the right thing in the right way. Without knowledgeable legal assistance, you may end up settling for less than what you deserve.
The calculation for pain and suffering is complicated and it involves a lot of factors that can be difficult for you to estimate without experience. Therefore, it is wise to seek experienced assistance. Contact us today.