RE: Does the victim of a car accident need an attorney?
my wife was in a car accident in which the other party was at fault. their insurance is covering everything- body shop, medical bills, etc. do i need to go out and get an attorney if i want something extra for her pain and suffering?
since the other company has accepted fault and agreed to pay for the car damages and medical bills, they will most likely offer her an settlement for her pain/suffering.
everyone thinks that lawyers will get you more money, but many times they dont. i have made offers that they rejected and got an lawyer and when i calculated the 1/3 less that the lawyer got, guess what the client ends up with less money; when they get that check i always hope that they remember they would have had more if they just took my offer.
if you have not received yet, you most likely will get swamped with phone calls and letters from attorneys promising to make you rich. ignore them. the only time you might want to consider if you think they are not treating you fairly.
also with an attorney everything comes to a crawl. so say you are ready to settle next week, but with a lawyer, most likely wont settle for 3 to 6 more months. the reason is that so many times adjusters and lawyers play voice mail back and forth. the lawyer may call once a month for an update and then forget until you call them back for a status.
if in doubt, i suggest you call your own insurance company and pose the question that the other at fault company is doing this and this. ask them if you think all is reasonable. if they say yes, do it on your own.
also might ask your own insurance if in your state you are allowed pain/suffering; some states have statutes that you may not be eligible.
one other thing; if eligible for pain/suffering where you live, the 1st offer is not the only offer. you can always counter for more. there is always a range that they can offer;
ie; their value is 1k; so 1st offer maybe $500; so if you counter say $5k, they wont settle since they do not believe the injury is worth more than 1k; but say you counter $750, most likely they will agree since in the range they believe they owe.