If you hesitate following a personal injury accident to contact an attorney you can be damaging any chance you have a settlement or winning your claim. Let's take a look at the most common reasons people wait too long to talk to a personal injury lawyer.
The Top Five Reasons People Wait Too Long To Call A Personal Injury Lawyer
#5: “I don’t want to get anyone in trouble.”You cannot get the personal responsible for causing your accident into more trouble by hiring an attorney or pursuing your legal claims.
Regarding traffic tickets and criminal charges, in nearly all accident cases, the victim has little to no control over the what happens to the at-fault driver. The initial decision to issue a traffic ticket is left up to the investigating officer. In cases of extreme negligence or recklessness (like drunk driving), the district attorney will decide whether more serious criminal charges will be brought against the at-fault driver.
Similarly, the negligent driver’s insurance company may cancel their coverage or increases their premium due to an accident. The injured person has no control over this.
#4: “I’m afraid my insurance company will raise my rates.”By law, an insurance company in Louisiana is prohibited from raising your rates or canceling your policy as a result of a nonfault incident. (La. R.S. 22:1284). A “nonfault incident” is an accident where the driver was not at fault, regardless of whether the incident was reported to the police. Insurance companies who violate this law are subject to penalties.
Also, insurance companies are not allowed to retaliate against you for hiring a personal injury attorney to represent you.
#3: “Attorneys are too expensive.”Our initial consultation is completely free and confidential. If you don’t hire us, no problem. At least let us help get you started by taking advantage of our CRASH COURSE (See #2, below).
We don’t charge a retainer and don’t charge by the hour. Instead, we handle all of our personal injury cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that at the end of your case, our fee is a percentage of the total collected for you.
Finally, we pay all of the expenses associated with pursuing your claims. Expenses vary from case to case, but typically include the cost of things like police reports, medical records, and postage. Our expenses are reimbursed, dollar for dollar, from the amount collected for you. We don’t make money on expenses and keep them as low as possible.
The bottom line: You only pay us if we collect money for you.
#2: “I can handle this myself.”In some “fender-bender” cases, where injuries are not significant, it is possible for someone to handle the claim on their own. That’s where our CRASH COURSE comes in. Even for small accidents, it is important to understand your rights before speaking with the insurance company. Just give us a call and schedule a free and confidential 15-minute call during which we will cover a few important topics including:
- How to properly file a claim (what the insurance company will ask you and why);
- Your rights and responsibilities;
- How to get your car repaired and get a rental;
- How medical bills get paid and how to remain compliant with your health insurer; and
- Different insurance coverages you may not know about.
However, in cases involving significant injuries, it is best to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney. Remember: insurance companies train adjusters to handle claims with the best interest of the company in mind. No matter how friendly them may seem on the phone, you are a claim number to them.
#1: “I’m not that kind of person.”I hear this phrase on a frequent basis, usually just prior to the words: “…but, I’m fed up with the insurance company, so that’s why I’m here.” The phrase doesn’t insult me. I understand what you mean. This is what I understand you are saying:
I’m an honest person;
I understand accidents happen;
I’m not out to hurt anyone; and
I just want to be treated fairly.
My response to this phrase has remained the same for over a decade: “Good, because we are not that kind of law firm!” Instead, our law firm was built on the fundamental principles of honesty, integrity, and fairness. We zealously represent our clients and protect their legal rights with the goal of achieving a reasonable and fair outcome for them.
By hiring our firm to handle your personal injury claim, you do not lose control over the important decisions made in your case. Rather, we keep our clients informed every step of the way, so that they know exactly what is going on in their case.
We take great pride in the confidentiality that goes along with an attorney-client relationship. Your information will never be shared with anyone without your permission.
Unless you have a high-profile case, the fact that you are pursuing a personal injury claim will not be made publicly available. In most cases, personal injury claims can be resolved directly between our firm and the insurance company, without the need for filing a lawsuit.
When you hire Grady J. Flattmann, Attorneys at Law, LLC, you can rest easy and feel assured that we will act with dignity you can be proud of.
Have You Been Hurt In A Covington Area Accident?
If you've been injured in a motorcycle accident you need to speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact me online or call my Covington office directly at 985.590.6182 to schedule your free consultation today. I help clients throughout Louisiana including Mandeville, Slidell, Bogalusa, Franklinton, Hammond, New Orleans and Metairie.