Is It Important to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer Near Me?
February 2, 2022 | Car Accidents
Car accidents raise many questions. What are your legal options? Do you need a lawyer? If so, which lawyer do you need? Should you search for a “car accident lawyer near me,” or should you call your cousin who handles car accident claims in another state?
Below, we briefly review why you need a car accident near you and why you should never wait to call one. If you want to discuss a specific accident and injuries, reach out for a free case evaluation from a law firm in your area.
Always Hire a Car Accident Attorney
It is always worth it to consult with a car accident lawyer
following injuries and losses from a crash. Case evaluations are free with no obligation, so you have nothing to lose even if you do not have a valid claim. Many people are surprised to learn about their rights following a crash, and you might miss out on significant compensation if you decide not to speak with a car accident lawyer.
After a crash, an experienced lawyer can:
- Evaluate what happened to cause your injuries
- Determine all parties that should be liable for your losses
- Calculate the value of your claim
- File and handle all insurance claims
- Negotiate for a settlement that covers your losses
- File an injury lawsuit in civil court if necessary
The process of seeking compensation – or even knowing how much compensation you deserve – is complex. Most people who attempt to handle a car accident claim without legal help end up with far less money than they deserve. This leaves them with ongoing injury-related costs they should not have to pay.
If you want to best protect your rights after a car accident and injuries, seek legal representation from a car accident attorney right away. Importantly, you want to hire a lawyer near you for various reasons.
Why You Want a Car Accident Lawyer in Missouri
If you are in an accident in the St. Louis area, you are not alone. Crashes happen every day and cause serious injuries to St. Louisans and people visiting from surrounding areas. Following a St. Louis crash, you want a lawyer based out of Missouri handling your claim.
License to Practice Law
First, each state has its own licensing rules for practicing law. For most attorneys to handle cases in Missouri, they must take the bar exam and complete all requirements to receive a license from The Missouri Bar. You always want to check whether an attorney has an active license and is in good standing with the Bar before you hire them.
While some lawyers might handle certain individual cases outside of their licensed jurisdiction, this is not as common with car accident claims. Below are additional reasons you should stay in the area when you need to hire your attorney.
Accessibility to the Law Office
Many people want to meet their lawyer face-to-face – after all, you are putting a lot of trust in this individual’s hands. If you live in the Metro area, you want a lawyer with an office close to you, so meetings are not a further inconvenience in your life. Of course, if you are more comfortable not meeting in person or your injuries prevent you from traveling, we can communicate via phone or video chat.
Familiarity with the Region
The St. Louis Metro area – and Missouri as a whole – is a unique place. We face many risks that St. Louisans understand, including drag racers on Broadway downtown, MetroBus and MetroLink accidents, bicycle accidents in Forest Park, accidents on I-64 or Forest Park Parkway, and more.
A lawyer near you will understand the circumstances leading up to your crash, including the particular risks of certain intersections and roads.
In addition, a law firm in your area will often work with local police departments and agencies to obtain police reports and other information regarding your accident. They will know how to check for convictions of drivers for DWI, speeding, or other violations that will prove fault and liability.
A local lawyer knows how hospitals in the area work regarding obtaining medical records or entering into agreements regarding medical care and coverage while a case is pending. If you are receiving treatment at Barnes-Jewish, you don’t want an attorney who has never heard of the hospital.
Knowledge of the Justice System
Many insurance companies operate nationally, but if you need to file a lawsuit in your car accident case, it will happen in your local county court.
Your local attorney will know whether to file your case in:
- St. Louis County Circuit Court
- St. Louis City Circuit Court
- St. Charles County Circuit Court
- St. Clair County Circuit Court
- Madison County Circuit Court
Where you file your case will depend on various factors, and your lawyer can assess the appropriate venue for your Missouri or Illinois car accident.
Once your car accident lawyer files the case, they will know how the system works in that particular court. Experience in a certain courthouse can go a long way for plaintiffs, so you want someone who regularly handles cases close to you.
Don’t Wait to Reach Out to a Missouri Car Accident Lawyer
If you suffered injuries in a car accident in Missouri, you only have a limited time to file a lawsuit. While Missouri has one of the longer statutes of limitations in the U.S. for injury claims, time passes quickly, and there are many steps you need to take before your lawyer files a lawsuit. The time limit is significantly shorter if your accident happened on the Metro East side of the Mississippi.
Waiting to call a lawyer also risks losing important evidence you need to prove your case. If you are already undergoing treatment for your injuries, start protecting your legal well-being by calling a car accident attorney near you as soon as possible. Our Missouri car accident lawyers are ready to help.