Why do I need to hire Bernard Law Group?
- We have obtained millions of dollars on behalf of our clients. We promise personal attention to your case. We are experienced, aggressive, and devoted exclusively to representing injury and accident victims. We will protect all of your rights and keep you informed about your case every step of the way.
- We will always return your phone calls and emails within 24 hours.
- We offer a free consultation and are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Do I need to hire a lawyer?
Probably. Today, even very simple car accident cases may require the services of an attorney. It’s not uncommon for insurance companies to make settlement of claims, especially those involving whiplash injuries, very difficult for individuals who do not have legal representation. Even though you will pay your attorney a fee for handling your case, in many instances, it is worth it, because the settlement or final award you receive is greater in the presence of legal assistance.
How much is my claim worth?
There are many factors which affect the value of the claim. Usually, if someone else’s negligence caused the car accident and resulted in your injuries, you should be entitled to payment of your bills plus compensation for pain and suffering. If you were seriously injured and missed time from work, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages or loss of earnings capacity in addition to payment of your medical bills and pain and suffering. Also, you may be entitled to recover for emotional distress, even if your injuries were not debilitating. In general, the more seriously injured you are, the more the monetary value of your case is, because you have more pain and suffering, medical bills, lost time from work, and other expenses. When an experienced Washington car accident attorney at Bernard Law Group handles auto accident cases resulting in whiplash or other injuries, we offer a free first consultation to discuss these issues with you.
What if I wasn’t injured, but my car was damaged or totaled?
Often, your property damage can be settled quickly and efficiently. You may not even need an attorney to handle the property damage from a car accident, even if you need a Tacoma car collision attorney to handle a personal injury claim from the same accident. It’s possible that you may not be entitled to recover more than the value of the repairs to your car or the value of the car if it was totaled. Because of that, if you hire an attorney for a fee, paying that fee may reduce the amount you are able to put toward your car. If you have an attorney representing you on a personal injury claim, you should check with your attorney to see if he or she will help you with your property damage claim.
What if I didn’t think I was injured at the time, but I felt hurt later?
Even if you think you have no injuries or only minor injuries, you should consult with your medical provider immediately after an accident. Whiplash injuries can be very serious. Only your doctor can really determine if you have been hurt.
You may be entitled to payment of your medical bills, compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, loss of earnings capacity, and/or emotional distress. If you were injured in the accident due to someone else’s negligence, you should consult an attorney to discuss representation.
What if the driver who hit me in the accident wasn’t insured?
Even though the law requires insurance, it is unfortunate that many drivers do not have coverage. It’s possible though, that your own insurance may cover your claims, depending on your policy. If you were a passenger, the driver’s insurance or that of the car’s owner may apply. Though it can be somewhat complicated, it is very important to explore all the options regarding insurance benefits. The attorneys at the Bernard Law Group are highly experienced in insurance matters.
Should I talk to my insurance company about the accident?
Immediately after the accident, talk to your insurance company only to notify them that an accident occurred. You should carefully evaluate whether you may need legal representation before giving detailed statements, and especially tape-recorded statements or interviews, to either your insurance company or the insurance company of the person who caused the accident. Often, insurance companies want to settle the matter quickly, possibly before you know the full extent of your injuries. If you make a settlement agreement with an insurance company, and then discover later that you have additional medical bills or time off work for which you were not compensated, you will not be able to get more money later.
Many law firms, including the Bernard Law Group, offer free initial consultations. Before having settlement discussions with an insurance company, you may want to consult with an attorney.
How long will it take to get a settlement?
Some cases may settle within a few weeks, and some cases take much longer. Often it may depend on which insurance companies are involved, more than on how seriously injured you are. Other factors that affect settlement time are whether who is at fault for the accident is disputed, whether your treatment for your injuries is ongoing or completed, whether the case can be settled without formal litigation or whether a lawsuit must be filed, and many other factors. Your attorney must first review the file and talk with the insurance companies and/or other attorney’s involved before having an idea of the time frame.