Many victims of car accidents in the Chicago area are unsure of the laws that apply to their collisions and do not know whether they are entitled to relief. The situation may become even murkier if that victim is contacted by an insurance company following a crash, a common approach used by these companies to reach out to victims in an effort to settle a claim quickly and for as little money as possible.
When an insurance company calls, far too often, injury victims mistakenly believe that the insurance company and its employees are on that victim’s side and will be taking the steps necessary to protect any of the victim’s rights that may be at issue. In reality, nothing could be further from the truth. Insurance companies have their own interests following a collision and those interests are almost always in opposition to the interests of a victim – even if the insurance company involved is the victim’s own insurer.
Goals of an Insurance Company after a Car Accident
An insurance company is a business, and like any business, it needs to take in more money than it pays out to remain profitable and to continue operations. Insurance companies are in the business of receiving payments from those they insure and, when necessary, they make payments to those entitled to relief from accidents, incidents, or other misfortunes. In the realm of car accidents, insurance companies make payments for damage done to a vehicle or other personal property as well as payments for injuries that result from a crash, including medical bills. With this set-up in mind, insurance companies must take in as much money as possible while paying out as little as possible to maximize their profits.
Therefore, it is in an insurance company’s best interests to settle a personal injury claim as soon after an accident as possible and for as little money as it can. A regular practice among some insurance companies that operate in Chicago is to reach an accident victim by telephone and offer them a lump sum payment as compensation for their injuries in the days immediately following an accident. Often, the payment, while small, sounds attractive to a victim who has incurred medical expenses and may continue to incur financial damages in the coming weeks and months. Many accident victims settle for these low amounts because they are unaware that they have the right to obtain much more for their damages.
Insurance companies strive to settle claims as soon as possible because it limits the possibility of an injured victim obtaining representation by a personal injury attorney. Once a lawyer gets involved, insurance companies almost always need to pay substantially more to victims for their losses and therefore the insurance company is out a greater amount of money.
If you have been involved in a car accident and you were injured, it is in your best interests to contact a personal injury attorney in Chicago to learn about your legal options and whether you have a valid claim. To prevent an insurance company from taking advantage of you, consider contacting a lawyer as soon as possible after a collision so that your rights will be preserved and you can get the full payment that you deserve.
Reasons to Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
The complexities of a claim for injuries cannot be boiled down simply into one or two principals of recovery or relief. Rather, they tend to be complex scenarios that can take weeks to years to resolve and may take unexpected turns along the way.
It is a good idea to utilize the services of a lawyer to ensure that all legal procedures are followed. Though the laws in Chicago enable victims with the right to obtain financial compensation, those rights will be forfeited if proper protocols are not followed. Even a minor mistake can nullify the rights of those who have been hurt and allow an insurance company and an at-fault driver to get away with paying nothing. By working with a skilled personal injury lawyer, victims can rest assured that their rights will be both acknowledged and preserved and that they will get their opportunity to be heard.
Many injury victims attempt to handle their claims themselves by negotiating with an insurance company but an experienced lawyer will always recommend against that approach. An individual does not have the same bargaining power as a powerful insurance company and will not be able to negotiate to the extent that a lawyer can. This leaves a victim vulnerable to receiving only partial compensation for his or her injuries or for getting nothing at all. It is common that people turn to a lawyer after attempting to handle their own case for some time but this is also a mistake: any efforts to work with an insurance company directly will not help the victim’s case but very often will cause harm.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the valuation of a case by an insurance company varies significantly when a victim works with and without a lawyer. An offer to an unrepresented injury victim may be pennies on the dollar of the claim’s actual worth and may not be enough to let the victim cover the expenses that stem from a crash. Instead, hiring a lawyer can substantially increase a settlement offer by tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Relief for Injury Victims in Chicago
The law firm of Abels & Annes, P.C. has spent years fighting for the rights of those who have been hurt and fighting against insurance companies for the fair compensation that victims deserve. If you have been victimized in an accident, we are standing by 24 hours a day, seven days a week to take your call toll free at (855) LAW-CHICAGO (529-2442) or locally at (312) 924-7575.
When you call Abels & Annes, P.C., you will have the ability to speak with a licensed lawyer about your accident and your options by receiving a free case consultation without obligation. Everything discussed will be kept confidential and if we represent you in your case, we will never charge you a fee unless we make a recovery on your behalf. We can also be reached online at any time.
At Abels & Annes, P.C., we fight for the best possible outcome in every case we take. If you have questions, if you need help, or if you simply do not know where to turn, call us now and let us get to work for you.
If you have been injured in an accident and your claim involves an insurance company, call Abels & Annes, P.C. now at (855) LAW-CHICAGO or Contact Us online for a free case consultation.
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