When Should I Hire a Car Accident Lawyer in Missouri?
April 28, 2022 | Car Accidents
An accident scene can quickly grow chaotic, and all you want to do is forget that this entire ordeal happened. Unfortunately, the consequences of the accident can stay with you for months and maybe years to come. At the same time, you may not want to contact a lawyer after an accident, but you should.
Contacting a car accident lawyer after an accident can help you get the justice you deserve and will relieve stress – not add to it.
Is it better to wait to hire a car accident lawyer in Missouri?
Do not want to wait to hire a car accident lawyer in Missouri. Missouri has a five-year statute of limitations for car accident cases. If the accident involved a death, the deadline decreases to three years. Long before the statute runs out, however, the evidence and witnesses you need to prove your claim can disappear, so do not wait to hire a car accident lawyer.
Get a lawyer on your team as soon as possible after an accident.
Are there telltale signs I need a Missouri car accident lawyer?
While not every collision will require the assistance of an attorney, there are some telltale signs that you can look for. A minor property damage-only accident may not require a car accident lawyer, but things change when you suffer any degree of injury.
If your accident has any of the following elements, hire a car accident lawyer in Missouri:
- You sustained an injury
- You are experiencing pain that has not gone away after two days
- You have had to miss work and school
- The other driver was intoxicated or distracted.
- You were a passenger involved in a car accident.
- There was a commercial vehicle, such as a semi-truck, involved
- The other driver did not have adequate insurance coverage
- An Uber or Lyft rideshare was involved
These elements can often complicate your claim and require someone with experience to navigate the cloudy insurance waters. You should hire a car accident lawyer the moment you can, as you want time to find the right law firm and undergo consultations.
What does a Missouri car accident lawyer do?
Many accident victims are not too keen on hiring a lawyer right away. They are under the impression that hiring a lawyer will extend their case and take money out of their pockets.
However, car accident attorneys typically work on a contingency fee basis. This arrangement means they do not charge you any fees unless they win. You do not have to pay anything upfront for their services.
An insurance claim can take anywhere from weeks to years to resolve. While having an attorney on your side does not necessarily extend the timeline by much, it can. In some cases, however, hiring a lawyer can move your case along faster. Insurance companies will try to offer you a lower settlement than what your case is worth, and when you have an attorney, we can refute their offer and negotiate a higher settlement.
The various responsibilities that car accident lawyers in Missouri have include:
- Collect and sort through relevant evidence
- Compile and send a demand letter
- File an insurance claim on your behalf
- Negotiate with insurance companies
- File a lawsuit when and if the time comes
- Communicate with other parties for you, such as creditors, insurance adjusters, and opposing counsel
Essentially, we will take all of the stress off your shoulders while you focus on healing. The Dixon Injury Firm is proud to say that we not only help accident victims but also their families get through this difficult time. Focus on your health and healing while we handle the stress that crashes bring.
What compensation do lawyers seek?
The primary goal of a car accident lawyer is to seek compensation on your behalf. After an accident, you may receive various economic and non-economic benefits. These benefits are in place so that you receive reimbursement for the damages resulting from the car accident.
Some of the compensation we will work to obtain include:
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Medical expenses related to your accident
- Lost wages if you missed work
- Lowered earning capacity damages
- Punitive damages
- Physical therapy and rehabilitation costs
- Pain and suffering
- Disability and permanent impairment
- Emotional distress
- Mental anguish
- Modifications to your home or vehicle
- Wrongful death damages
The insurance company will work hard to deny or lower your claim. They will look for the smallest detail to shift fault and reduce your settlement amount. It is best not to speak to the insurance company or make a recorded statement after an accident. Instead, contact a lawyer right away so that we can protect your rights after an accident.
Why do people hesitate to call a lawyer?
We mentioned that accident victims are not too keen on hiring a lawyer. This reluctance is due to some common misconceptions about car accident claims. The first misconception is that an attorney will cost too much. Victims often assume that hiring an attorney will mean paying money out of pocket.
While an attorney will take their cut after an accident, their work while handling your case will far outweigh the costs. Accident victims will often get a larger settlement than victims who do not have an attorney. Another reason you may feel apprehensive about calling a lawyer is you believe the insurance company has your best interests in mind.
The reality is that insurance companies do not care to treat accident victims fairly or offer them the compensation they are entitled to recover. They want to save as much money as possible. They often deny claims and leave accident victims out to dry. Some victims are uneasy about hiring an attorney because they do not want to look greedy.
You are not greedy for having an attorney protect your rights. It is normal to feel uneasy about filing a claim, but it is your legal right. You are not greedy for seeking a fair and full settlement. This settlement is what the insurance company should have offered you from the beginning, and when you are not getting those damages, you may be leaving money on the table.
If you have suffered an injury in an accident, you need to focus on healing and allow a Missouri car accident lawyer to handle the following legal complexities.
Car accident victims deal with a wide range of injuries, including:
- Burn injuries
- Broken bones
- Herniated discs
- Back and neck injuries
- Spinal cord trauma
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Shoulder injuries
You might sustain many other injuries after an accident, and you should remain focused on your physical healing. This means you must call a lawyer who can work on getting you the compensation you deserve for your damages.
Call a Missouri car accident lawyer today
The right car accident law firm will work with the accident victims and their families to protect your rights. Reach out to an attorney near you to schedule an initial consultation today.
You need to file a claim within the statute of limitations or risk the court denying your case.