A lawyer can help in several significant ways after a car accident. Even minor vehicular accidents can lead to expensive repairs and injuries, and legal representation will help ensure you don’t wind up paying for the results of another driver’s negligence. It’s important to know when you should contact a qualified Kansas City car accident attorney, and there are a few ways to determine whether you need legal representation.
Determine Who Caused Your Accident
Did another driver cause your accident? If so, a lawyer can help you build a personal injury cause against an at-fault driver to recover compensation for your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost income, and property damage resulting from the collision. An attorney can help you determine any fault you may hold for the accident and your chances of securing compensation if you’re not sure whether another driver is to blame.
Missouri follows a comparative negligence law, which means a plaintiff may still recover damages for an accident he or she partially caused, but the plaintiff loses a percentage of the case award equal to his or her percentage of fault for the incident. If you believe you may owe more than you will receive from a car accident claim, a lawyer can help you determine the best course of action to maximize your possible recovery. If you think that fault will come into play after your accident, an attorney can help with this concern, as well.
Assess Your Damages
You may not need to hire an attorney to handle the matter with the other driver if a mild collision results only in some chipped paint and a slightly dented bumper. It’s a good idea to contact an attorney right away if an accident results in any type of injury to you, a passenger, or anyone else involved in the accident.
You will need experienced legal counsel who can accurately assess the total amount of your damages after a claim. For example, if you broke your arm in a car accident, you will not only need proof of the cost of treatment but also proof that the injury resulted from the other driver’s actions and not some other cause. Personal injury lawsuits for car accidents may seem straightforward at first, but they can quickly escalate into complex legal battles that can drag on for weeks, months, or longer in some cases.
Determine the type of injuries you sustained, the time required to recover from them, and the costs associated with treating those injuries to start forming an idea of the compensation you could receive from a personal injury claim. Your attorney can help you claim lost income from time you had to spend home from work during recovery, as well as the costs of repairing your vehicle. Hiring a lawyer to handle your claim is in your best interest if your accident resulted in extensive damages or painful injuries.
Start with a Consultation
Many Kansas City personal injury lawyers offer free case evaluations to potential clients. This is beneficial for both attorneys and clients; attorneys can choose the cases they believe have the highest chances of success and plaintiffs have a better understanding of their legal options and the type of compensation they may be able to recover.
During a free consultation, an attorney can review the details of your case to determine whether it has merit and the total amount you could receive if you win. If the attorney offers contingency fee billing, his or her success hinges on yours, because the attorney will not collect legal fees unless you win your case. This system helps discourage frivolous lawsuits and helps ensure plaintiffs can recover after accidents caused by negligence. Ultimately, legal representation may cost more but offers a much higher chance of a successful claim and will likely lead to more compensation than you could secure on your own.