You suffered serious injuries in an accident. You know you deserve compensation for your injuries, but the insurance company that covers the liable party has made it difficult to get the compensation you really deserve. Unfortunately, a personal injury lawyer sounds like an expensive proposition.
If worries about the cost of an attorney have you down, however, Abels & Annes, P.C., can help. Many Chicago personal injury attorneys, including our firm, don’t charge our clients money up front. There’s no retainer fee. Instead, we work on a contingency fee basis.
How Do Contingency Fees Work?
In a personal injury claim, an attorney may accept your case on a contingency fee basis. Instead of needing to pay for your attorney upfront, the attorney will accept a percentage of the settlement or award you receive at the end of your claim. This can substantially decrease your financial worries during a time when you may find yourself struggling to pay the bills due to high medical bills and an inability to work in your usual capacity.
What if I Do Not Win My Case?
If an attorney accepted your claim on a contingency fee basis and you did not win a settlement or award as a result of your case, you do not need to pay your attorney. Typically, however, an attorney who accepts a claim on a contingent fee basis will not accept a claim if he feels it lacks adequate evidence or support for you to win an award or settlement. In general, your personal injury attorney only gets paid if you do.
Can You Afford Not to Hire an Attorney?
In all those worries about money after an accident, many people forget one key consideration: whether they can afford not to hire an attorney.
Having an attorney on your side in a personal injury claim can offer these critical benefits.
The attorney can help collect evidence regarding your claim. Your attorney will investigate your claim, seeking evidence about how your injuries occurred and who bears liability for your accident. The attorney may investigate the scene of the accident, talk with witnesses, examine video footage, and even bring in an expert witness to look over the scene of the accident, if warranted. This evidence can help prove who caused your accident and provide you with the evidence you need to present to the insurance company or to help support your claim if the case must go to court.
The attorney can help you better understand how much compensation you deserve for your injuries. Often, private individuals have little understanding of how much compensation they deserve following a serious accident. The compensation you receive will depend on a variety of factors. An attorney will help evaluate those factors and give you a strong understanding of how much compensation you should expect for your injuries.
This may include:
- Taking a look at the insurance policy limits that covers the liable party. In the case of a personal injury claim, this may mean following the law to demand a disclosure from an auto insurance policy. For property insurance limits, a business insurance policy, or a medical malpractice policy, it can be more difficult to obtain the needed information, but it can be accomplished. The limits of the insurance policy may determine how much compensation you can ultimately receive for your injuries.
- Evaluating your injuries and medical bills. Injuries like traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injury, for example, may bring with them ongoing, substantial medical expenses. Even injuries like broken bones can lead to significant medical expenses. Your medical expenses often form the foundation for your claim, so an attorney will work closely with you to look at your medical expenses from the accident.
- Including the time you spent off work and how it impacts your income after substantial injuries. Many people must miss substantial time at work as a result of severe injuries. Even employers willing to work with an accident victim may struggle to allow that employee to continue working when the employee’s injuries cause substantial limitations. Including those lost wages as part of the personal injury claim can help the victim continue to provide for his family.
Many accident victims find that an attorney substantially increases the compensation received after an accident. The insurance company may, for example, attempt to offer a low settlement immediately after the accident, or continue to provide low offers to a private individual dealing with the claim alone. Hiring an attorney often increases the insurance company’s willingness to offer the funds the victim deserves as well as clearly defining the full compensation the victim deserves.
An experienced personal injury lawyer can identify all parties who bear liability in an accident. Sometimes, more than one party may share liability for the injuries you suffered in your accident. A personal injury attorney can help identify all parties who share liability, which can ultimately increase the compensation you can receive.
An attorney can provide guidance and support throughout your claim. An attorney can give you a better idea of what to expect, whether you need to know more about the discovery process or how to deal with questions from the insurance company that covers the party liable for your accident. Not only that, the attorney will handle negotiations with the insurance company or liable party on your behalf, which can lead to a significant decrease in the stress you face as a result of the accident. Many victims find that working with an attorney alleviates a great deal of the stress and worry associated with the personal injury claim itself.
Hiring a Chicago personal injury attorney after a serious accident does not have to be a daunting prospect. Most people find that working with a personal injury attorney ultimately increases the compensation they ultimately receive for the accident and their injuries. Contact an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney as soon after your accident as possible to learn more about the compensation you deserve.