Why You Should Hire a Car Accident Lawyer After a Car Accident
If you’ve been involved in a car accident, you may be dealing with serious injuries and mounting medical bills. Fortunately, Pennsylvania law permits car accident victims to recover compensation for their damages. You may choose to do this on your own or with the help of an experienced attorney. In fact, many car accident victims wonder, ‘What does a car accident lawyer do?’ and is it worth hiring an attorney? Below, we discuss the role of a car accident attorney so you can make an informed decision about whether to hire one or not.
Injured in a Car Accident?
What Car Accident Lawyers Do
Car accident lawyers, also known as personal injury lawyers, provide legal services to individuals who have been injured in car accidents. Their specific duties include:
Consultation and Assessment:
- Initial Consultation: Meet with clients to discuss the details of the accident, and injuries sustained, and gather relevant information.
- Review of Police Reports: Analyze the accident report filed by the Philadelphia police department to understand the facts surrounding the incident.
- Providing Legal Guidance: Navigating the legal aftermath of a car accident in Philadelphia can be complex, especially given the unique no-fault system in Pennsylvania. If your damages are significant, your attorney can help determine whether you are eligible to recover additional compensation from the at-fault party.
Legal Advice and Strategy:
- Legal Advice: Provide clients with legal counsel regarding their rights and potential legal remedies.
- Strategy Development: Devise a legal strategy tailored to the specific circumstances of the accident, which may involve negotiations or litigation.
Investigation and Evidence Gathering:
- Scene Investigation: Visit the accident scene to gather evidence such as photographs, witness statements, and accident reconstruction reports.
- Medical Records: Collect and review medical records to assess the extent of the injuries and their impact on the client's life.
Negotiations with Insurance Companies:
- Communicate with Insurers: Handle communication with insurance companies to negotiate settlements that adequately compensate the client.
- Demand Letters: Draft and send demand letters to insurers outlining the compensation sought for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
Filing Legal Claims:
- Complaint Filing: Prepare and file legal documents to initiate a lawsuit against the at-fault party if necessary.
- Serve Legal Notices: Ensure that all relevant parties are served with legal notices and summons.
Representation in Court:
- Court Appearances: Represent clients in court, presenting evidence and arguments to support their case.
- Cross-examination: Cross-examine witnesses and experts to challenge the opposing party's claims.
- Mediation or Arbitration: Participate in alternative dispute resolution methods to reach settlements outside of court. Philadelphia applies comparative negligence laws to personal injury cases. This means that your compensation will be reduced based on the level to which you contributed to the accident. For example, if you are found to have been 20 percent responsible for the accident, you will only receive 80 percent of the total compensation you are offered. Your attorney can help to fight for maximum compensation and increase your financial recovery.
- Settlement Agreements: Draft settlement agreements outlining the terms of the resolution, such as the amount of compensation and any liability waiver.
- Trial Preparation: Prepare clients for trial and present a strong case in court, including selecting a jury and making opening and closing statements.
- Expert Testimony: Arrange for expert witnesses to testify on relevant issues, such as accident reconstruction or medical prognosis.
- Distribution of Settlement Funds: Ensure that clients receive the compensation they are entitled to in a timely manner.
- Liens and Subrogation: Address any medical liens and subrogation claims to protect the client's settlement proceeds.
The car accident lawyers at van der Veen, Hartshorn and Levin are well-versed in the specific laws and regulations of Pennsylvania and Philadelphia, including local court procedures. We have a deep understanding of insurance practices and policies in the area. Additionally, we are familiar with the unique challenges and characteristics of Philadelphia traffic and road conditions, as well as any trends or issues related to car accidents in the city. Because of our experience in the local context, our lawyers can better advocate for our clients and ensure they receive appropriate compensation for their injuries and damages in Philadelphia.
- Unmatched Support: Navigating the Fallout of a Car Accident
"I was involved in a car accident while 13 weeks pregnant. I didn’t know where to turn until a friend gave me a number and said “Hey, check out this lawyer”. I did just that, and even though the process was long, which I expected, it was the best decision I've made in a long time. In the end, we won! I have to thank Mr. Hartshorn and his team for everything they have done for not only me but my family as well. I could not have picked a better lawyer! Thank you all so very much! On a scale of 1 to 10, you guys are a 100!"- Deasia C. / Client★★★★★
- Seamless Experience: Legal Excellence Meets Compassionate Care
"Wonderful experience with this law firm after getting hit last summer. The whole staff is on top of things and communicates well. A special shoutout to the attorney who handled my case and negotiated my medical bills. I was able to get the care and treatment I needed with minimal stress because they handled it all!"- Amanda A. / Client★★★★★
- Effortless Recovery: Comprehensive Care and Exceptional Communication
"Going with this law firm for my auto accident case was the best advice anyone ever gave me. I was very impressed with my results and the way they handled my case and me."- Ant F. / Client★★★★★
- Prompt and Precise: An Automobile Settlement that Stands Out
“I wanted to thank you for the excellent work you did as my attorney with the settlement of my automobile accident. I know you have a lot of clients, so your prompt responses and attention to detail really meant a lot to me.”- Jarrett H. / Client★★★★★
Benefits of Hiring an Experienced Philadelphia Car Accident Attorney
Hiring an experienced car accident attorney in Philadelphia can offer numerous benefits for individuals who have been involved in car accidents. Some of the key advantages include:
- Legal Expertise: Experienced attorneys have a deep understanding of Pennsylvania's and Philadelphia's specific traffic laws, regulations, and court procedures, which can be crucial in building a strong case.
- Negotiation Skills: They are skilled negotiators who can engage with insurance companies to secure the best possible settlement offers for their clients, maximizing compensation.
- Thorough Investigation: Experienced lawyers know how to thoroughly investigate accidents, gather evidence, and interview witnesses to build a compelling case.
- Accurate Assessment: They can accurately assess the full extent of your damages, including medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering, ensuring you receive fair compensation.
- Litigation Experience: If necessary, they are prepared to take cases to trial and have experience representing clients in court, presenting evidence, cross-examining witnesses, and making compelling arguments.
- Access to Experts: Experienced attorneys have access to a network of expert witnesses, including accident reconstruction specialists and medical professionals, who can provide critical testimony to support your case.
- Legal Resources: They have access to legal resources, research tools, and databases that can aid in building a strong case and staying updated on the latest legal developments.
- Timely Filing: Ensuring that all legal documents are filed accurately and within statutory deadlines, preventing procedural errors that could jeopardize your claim.
- Stress Reduction: Hiring an attorney allows you to focus on your recovery and well-being while they handle the legal aspects, reducing the stress and anxiety associated with pursuing a car accident claim.
- Maximizing Compensation: Experienced attorneys are skilled at identifying all potential sources of compensation and will work diligently to ensure you receive the maximum amount to which you are entitled.
- Local Knowledge: Familiarity with Philadelphia's unique traffic patterns, local insurance practices, and the tendencies of local judges and juries can be a significant advantage in negotiations and court proceedings.
- Contingency Fees: Many experienced car accident attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don't pay legal fees unless they secure compensation for you, making legal representation accessible to those with limited financial resources.
- Avoiding Costly Mistakes: Experienced attorneys can help clients avoid common pitfalls, such as providing statements that could be used against them or accepting lowball settlement offers.
- Faster Resolution: Their experience can expedite the claims process, allowing clients to receive compensation more quickly.
- Objectivity: Attorneys can provide objective advice and prevent clients from making hasty decisions driven by emotion.
- Support and Advocacy: Experienced attorneys serve as advocates for their clients, ensuring their rights are protected and their best interests are represented throughout the legal process.
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Take the Next Step
If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Philadelphia and are wondering whether hiring an attorney will be beneficial, contact our law firm and schedule a consultation. We’d be happy to answer the question ‘What does a car accident lawyer do?’ for free. We’ll review your case and discuss its details with you so you can have a better understanding of your rights and the options available to you.