There are around 25 million ER visits each year for unintentional injuries, with personal injury claims having increased by 97 percent and a 1.7 percent increase in personal injury lawyers during 2022. If you’ve been injured in an accident that was someone else’s fault, you may be wondering if you should hire a personal injury lawyer to help with your case. Personal injury lawyers assist accident victims in getting compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other losses. But are they really worth the time and money? Let’s weigh the pros and cons.
The Potential Benefits
Maximizing Compensation: The biggest benefit of hiring a personal injury attorney is that they can help you maximize the compensation you receive. Personal injury lawyers know how to calculate damages, negotiate skillfully with insurance adjusters, and build a strong case for trial if necessary. An experienced Clearwater personal injury attorney can make the difference between settling for the lowball offer from an insurer and getting full and fair compensation.
Navigating the Legal Process: The legal process after an accident can be complex and confusing if you try to handle it on your own. There are lots of deadlines, paperwork requirements, and specifics of injury law that you need to know. A good personal injury lawyer will handle all communications and filings for you so you can focus on recovering from your injuries. They serve as your advocate and guide.
Reduced Stress: Pursuing compensation after an accident is often extremely stressful, especially if the injuries prevent you from working – it can take up to three years for a case to settle if it goes to court. Hiring a lawyer lifts the burden from your shoulders so you don’t have to deal with obstructive insurance adjusters, scramble to meet filing deadlines, or agonize over the value of your case. You can leave it to your attorney and reduce stress.
Legal Fees: The biggest downside of hiring a Clearwater personal injury lawyer is that they will take a chunk of your eventual settlement or court award as payment. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, taking around 30-40% of your payout. For some accident victims, this tradeoff is worth it, but for cases involving minor injuries, the legal fees may not justify the added value of an attorney.
No Guarantee: Even the best personal injury lawyer can’t guarantee that your case will succeed or that you’ll get top dollar in compensation. If the case loses outright, you won’t owe attorney’s fees, but you also won’t get any settlement. And if your lawyer can’t negotiate strongly enough or doesn’t have the proper expertise, you may end up with less than you hoped for.
Is Hiring a Lawyer Your Best Move?
There are several factors that can determine if hiring a personal injury lawyer after an accident is your wisest choice:
- If injuries are severe with extensive costs: Lawyers can pursue larger settlements.
- If the case involves complex legal issues: Lawyers have specialized expertise.
- If the insured party is uncooperative: Lawyers can initiate litigation if needed.
- If you don’t have time to handle paperwork: Lawyers take over filing obligations.
- If litigation looks likely from the outset: Lawyers prepare cases for trial.
However, for minor injuries or straightforward cases, you may choose to handle things yourself and keep all compensation without paying attorney’s fees.
In the end, hiring a personal injury lawyer is a very individual decision based on your specific accident case factors. But in many cases, their expertise and skills can be worth the fees they charge. Just be sure to vet lawyers carefully and understand fee structures before agreeing to work together. The right attorney may be a valuable ally in getting fair compensation after you suffer an injury due to someone else’s negligence.