When to Get an Attorney for a Car Accident in Long Beach

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Hiring a car accident attorney in Long Beach is something you need to consider if you have just been in a car accident in Long Beach. The other driver might try to avoid liability, while his or her insurance company could unfairly deny your claim – even though you know you were not at fault. Meanwhile, you might be dealing with painful and expensive personal injuries, on top of lost wages and property damage. An attorney will work for you, not for an insurance company. Your lawyer will take care of every aspect of your claim while you focus on recovering.

Serious or Catastrophic Injuries

Most law firms will not accept car accident claims involving only minor injuries. Minor injury claims typically are not worth enough to make hiring an attorney worth the money. You could still be eligible for compensation and an insurance claim, but you likely do not need a lawyer to help you negotiate a fair settlement. If, however, the car accident caused you serious injuries, it is worth speaking to an attorney.

  • Multiple bone fractures
  • Severe burns
  • Permanent scarring or disfigurement
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries

Serious injuries are those that force you to miss time at work and pay expensive hospital bills. They may also cause permanent damages, such as lifelong disabilities, brain damage, or loss of limb. If you are not sure whether your injuries are serious enough to qualify you for an injury claim, ask an attorney during a free consultation.

Wrongful Death

Wrongful death is the most severe outcome of someone else’s negligence. Wrongful death is always a reason to consult with an attorney after a car accident. If you believe the other driver or a different party, such as the manufacturer of a defective seatbelt, could have prevented your loved one’s fatal injuries, hire an attorney to handle your family’s wrongful death claim. You could be eligible for many different types of damages.

Expensive Property Damage

Although you can handle most property damage claims on your own in the California Small Claims Court, if you suffered property damage in excess of $10,000, you may want to speak to an attorney. Larger property damage claims could set you up for an insurance company giving you a hard time during settlement negotiations. Rather than settling for less than the true value of your case, use an attorney to take over negotiations for you.

Broken Laws

Car accidents in which one driver breaks a serious law, such as driving while intoxicated or excessive speeding, often deserve attention from attorneys. A broken roadway law is an act of negligence that could make the driver personally liable for damages. Having an attorney represent you during your car accident claim could result in greater compensation for the other driver’s actions. If your case goes to court, for example, a judge may award you punitive damages as a means of punishing the defendant for recklessness or gross negligence.

Complicated Case

Many different factors could escalate a simple car accident claim into something more complicated. You should speak to a car accident lawyer if your case involves a construction zone, fault-related arguments, an inaccurate police report, more than two parties, or insurance issues. In complex situations, an insurance company could try to take advantage of you and make you settle your claim for less – or for nothing at all. A lawyer will make sure that does not happen.