So, you’ve been in an accident and it was someone else’s fault. You have personal injuries, and need to file a personal injury claim. So where do you start? There are certain steps you can take to file an effective claim, and it’s important to know when to take them. Hiring an attorney may or may not be the best solution for you. Maybe your claim is simple enough to go without an attorney, or maybe it is not.
Gather All of Your Documents and Information
Before you file your injury claim, there is a lot of information you need to keep track of. Creating a checklist is a good idea. This should include things like contact information of the other party, contact information of your contact with your insurance company, and the specifics of the accident.
Determine If the Insurance Will Cover Your Injuries
If you’ve been in an accident where someone else is at fault, you might want to check and see if they have insurance that will cover your injury claim. If it’s a car accident, does the other driver have insurance? If you slip and fall, who owns the building? Do they have insurance to cover your injuries?
Decide Whether or Not to Get an Attorney
Unless your injuries aren’t significant and you are confident you can handle your claim on your own, you should probably at least discuss your case with a personal injury attorney. Just discussing your case with an attorney doesn’t necessarily mean you’re going to hire them. Most attorneys will offer a free consultation, and this will give you an idea of what they have to offer your personal injury claim.
Decide Whether or Not to File a Lawsuit
Most cases obtain a settlement before it goes to trial, and may be resolved before a lawsuit is even filed. There are ways to obtain compensation without going to court. When they have insurance coverage, you can file a third-party claim against the at-fault person’s insurance carrier. If you have issues that need to be resolved with the other party, you can also file a complaint in your local branch of the state’s civil court.
Filing the Lawsuit and the Outcome
If your injury claim cannot be settled, you will need to file the lawsuit. Before trial, both parties gather information from each other, giving them to chance to evaluate the other party’s case. Before or after filing a lawsuit, a judge may order mediation to avoid trial. What happens in mediation can be decisive to your case, so hiring a good attorney is extremely important.
If the case goes to trial, a jury will usually evaluate and determine the conclusion of the case. Depending on certain issues, the losing party has the right to appeal the case.
Stand Your Ground
Filing a claim can be a stressful time, and that is why you should know what to do every step of the way. If the case is not easily resolved, there are attorneys available to help you through this. You need to recover from what has happened to you and reduce your stress, so hiring a lawyer for your injury claim may be the solutions to all of your problems.