Many accident victims, in particular car accident victims, decide they want to negotiate their own settlements with insurance companies. An accident victim often is afraid that attorney’s fees will take such a large percentage of the settlement that it is not worth hiring an attorney. The individual may feel that negotiating with an insurance company is pretty simple and he or she should have no problems mutually agreeing on a fair amount.
In some very minor accidents, it can be true that an individual may not need to hire an attorney for the settlement, particularly if the damage to the vehicle was minor, there weren’t any injuries of any kind, and the insurance company agrees to pay a fair amount. However, if injuries are involved or if the damage to the vehicle was significant, an attorney can be a huge asset on your side during the settlement negotiations – or if the case proceeds to trial.
Often, accident victims who hire attorneys to help with the accident case end up receiving a larger settlement even after the attorney’s fees than those who choose to negotiate the settlement themselves. This happens because attorneys understand the liability laws, the insurance claims process, and know how to best explain the damages.
If you do choose to negotiate your own settlement without an attorney, there are some things to remember. Don’t take the first offer – the insurance adjuster will typically make a very low offer hoping that the case settles quickly. In order to pursue your claim, you will need to gather evidence, including police reports, statements from witnesses, medical records and bills, and any other information that can be used to pursue your claim against the insurance company.
At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty believes that everyone deserves high-quality legal representation in a personal injury case. If you have been injured in an accident in the San Francisco area, including Tracy City, Oakland, Fairfield or Hayward, call Micha Star Liberty, Alameda County car accident attorney, at Liberty Law at 415-896-1000.