How a Personal Injury Lawyer can Help you get Your Car Insurance Claim in California

How a Personal Injury Lawyer can Help you get Your Car Insurance Claim in California

If you have been involved in an auto accident and your vehicle was damaged, you might not know how to proceed with your car insurance claim without a personal injury lawyer.

Research shows that every year in California, there are at least 250,000 cases of accidents where injuries occur.

When your car is damaged through the fault of another, you’ll want to try and recover the amount you paid to repair or replace it. In California, we call these car damage claims property damage claims.

Getting Your Car Insurance Claim in California

To get your car damage claim payment after an accident, you have two options. You can either file a claim with the other driver’s insurance if they’re at fault, or you can go through your own insurance company.

After an auto accident, the first thing to check is if anyone in the car sustained injuries. When you check and discover injury issues, you should call 911 right away to get help with the medical emergency.

After dealing with injuries, it is important to know where the property damage liability policy limits coverage for the at-fault driver. Most drivers only carry the minimum insurance policy limit, which in California is $15,000.00. 

You should note that if you only have one vehicle on your policy, you will have to carry both liability and collision coverage. If you have two or more vehicles on your policy, you will have the option of carrying or declining collision coverage.

Key Information that Personal Injury Lawyer needs to Establish your Car Insurance Claim

To establish your car insurance claim, your California personal injury lawyer will definitely request the following information about the accident from you:

  • Detailed accident report with supporting evidence.
  • Medical records documenting injuries sustained.
  • Witness statements corroborating your account.
  • Photos or videos of the accident scene.
  • Proof of expenses related to injuries.
  • Police report, if available.
  • Communication with insurance companies.
  • Documentation of lost wages or income.
  • Expert opinions or testimonies, if necessary.
  • Any relevant traffic laws or regulations.

How a California Personal Injury Lawyer can Help with Your Car Insurance Claim

Personal injury lawyers for car accidents can assist you with getting the benefits for which you are eligible under an automobile policy, as well as to avoid the obstacles an insurance company may impose on you when you make an insurance claim.

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1. Evaluating Your Claim

Your chosen car injury lawyer knows the specifics of car insurance law and can help you get your claim approval as quickly and smoothly as possible.

When you first talk to your lawyer, they’ll go over what happened in your accident to understand your case better.

They will ask some important questions and perform a detailed evaluation in order to determine how much your car insurance policy legally entitles you to.

If you contact them early on in the process, then your lawyer will already know who your insurance company is when they finally file your claim.

2. Gathering evidence and documentation

A car accident attorney can gather evidence for compensation for your loss, such as medical expenses, future medical treatment, lost wages, property damage, rental car expenses, and an auto insurer’s refusal to pay an out-of-pocket expense.

The lawyer should be able to easily show that poor road design or maintenance caused the accident. Proper pre-filing preparation is key to a quick claim settlement.

Documents to gather when seeking compensation for a car accident include: a police report; proof of insurance for all involved parties; witness contact information; an itemized statement for vehicle repairs; and a diagnosis letter from a medical professional stating the nature and extent of your injuries and required treatment.

Others include: a receipt of any expenses that you incurred because of the accident (car rental or medical expenses); and evidence to prove the other driver was at fault (photographs of the accident scene, damaged vehicles, and visible injuries of your own).

3. Negotiating with insurance companies

I can’t stress enough how important it is to speak with an attorney before you talk to any insurance company, including your own.

Even after a car accident, insurers (including your own) are very motivated to get their policyholders to settle for as little money as possible. 

Keep in mind that if you speak to their insurance company and they call you to command a conversation, you don’t have to respond. In fact, if you have a California attorney, by law, you are not allowed to call and speak to you.

If an insurance company tries to get you to talk about your accident, refer them to your personal injury lawyer.

4. Representing you in court, if necessary

A good personal injury attorney will help you prepare the evidence of negligence in order to present it to the insurance company and persuade them, based on the evidence, to make a fair offer to resolve your claim.

They will also represent you in court if the insurance company refuses to acknowledge the car accident injuries, denies your claim, or makes you an unreasonably low settlement offer.

The attorney helps you through the legal process, whether you are a pedestrian, driver, or passenger in any type of automobile, and provides personal and compassionate attention to you.

Benefits of Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Car Insurance Claim

Here are some benefits of hiring a California personal injury lawyer to handle your case with an insurance company:

1. Maximizing Your Compensation

Once the lawsuit is filed, the difference between a good lawyer and a great lawyer is additional discovery. This includes deposing the at-fault party and third parties; demanding documents; hiring expert witnesses; and more.

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The more work the attorney is willing to put in upfront, the better your final settlement or judgment will be. If you have been injured in an auto accident due to another party’s negligent or intentional actions, you may be entitled to compensation.

Notice this says “may.” Having an attorney is not a guarantee of a settlement. However, a good personal injury lawyer will definitely increase your chances of being able to maximize the compensation you get after an auto accident.

2. Reducing Stress and Hassle

The stress of filing a personal injury claim, especially after a car accident, can be overwhelming. When filing a claim, you may find that the entire personal injury process is not only stressful but also full of hassle as well.

Having a lawyer can help to eliminate some of this stress and hassle, especially when it comes to taking out insurance. Instead of interacting with the insurance companies yourself and waiting on hold just to ask a few questions, a personal injury lawyer can be your middleman.

A lawyer will also have the expertise to get the job done faster and better than you could alone, without any strain on your part.

3. Ensuring Fair Treatment

It is all too common for insurance companies to act in bad faith, knowing that most policyholders are completely unaware of the rules regulating insurers. 

Instead of insurance companies taking advantage of vulnerable policyholders, knowledgeable legal experts can level the playing field, forcing insurers to deal fairly with their claimants.

If an insurance company is not being straightforward, a personal injury attorney can provide several services to ensure fair treatment.

For example, if your insurance company is attempting to underestimate the damages in an accident and sue for unfairly low amounts, personal injury lawyers know the tactics to watch out for and will work diligently to counter these techniques.

Similarly, if an insurance company is asking for incomplete information, knowledgeable car insurance lawyers will ensure that the required supporting documentation is provided in a timely manner, without error, in accordance with the terms of your insurance policy. 

Your insurance lawyer will also ensure that you know the coverage limitations under each policy, and, crucially, that a prompt, fair, and equitable settlement offer is presented before taking further legal action.

4. Increasing Your Chances of a Successful Claim

Some car insurance claims are more complicated than others and require the intervention of professionals. This is often the case if you have been involved in a serious car accident in California and the insurer is refusing to settle your claim.

In similar situations, it is the duty of your California personal injury lawyer to investigate the situation. The lawyer will also guide you if you make minor adjustments to your claim application or help you issue one to make a case.

In other words, while you can file your insurance claim without an attorney, you can also increase your chances of a successful claim by entrusting your claim to the care of the right lawyer.

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5. Handling complex legal procedures and paperwork

There are complex legal procedures related to filing. There are procedures and forms that relate to obtaining a court-stipulated settlement. 

All of the proceedings leading to the trial are subject to strict California civil procedure rules. What might appear to be unwieldy, insurmountable legal problems to a layperson can be managed with due ease by a trained professional.

If your claim was denied, you are entitled to a statement of your rights from your insurance company. These rights include the right to contact the Department of Insurance to report your insurance company’s improper actions. 

Suing your insurance company is a complex legal matter for which you need expert legal advice.

Choosing the Right Personal Injury Lawyer

If you need help with your personal injury litigation, are you aware that hiring the appropriate lawyer can be the most critical choice you make?

The best personal injury lawyer can make the distinction between clearing up your claim swiftly and dangerously underestimating your injustices.

Here is what you should do when hiring a California personal injury lawyer:

1. Researching and interviewing potential lawyers

Before you do anything else, you should research several personal injury attorneys in Los Angeles. Aim to have at least three or four interviews in place so that you have some options.

Focus your search online and seek out highly-reviewed legal professionals who practice in the personal injury field in California. Keep your expectations high and your goals in mind. You need to hire a personal injury attorney who can lend you customized support.

Always consider online ratings when reviewing car accident lawyer profiles. Look for real customer insights in your review. Former customers often leave detailed, informative, long-form reviews that offer an in-depth look at how the personal injury law firm works with clients.

Researching personal injury attorneys online can save you time and energy in your search, but online reviews alone do not offer the complete picture you need to make a decision.

2. Considering experience and track record

A personal injury lawyer’s track record can tell you a lot about not only the claims history but also the professionalism of a personal injury lawyer and how they are treated. Often, they want to make an immediate resolution to a surprise.

It’s a positive reputation, a positive indicator of effect. Thus, insurance firms take seriously those personal injury attorneys who have a solid case track record, who have tried severely many lawsuits, and who have collected millions of dollars in personal injury lawsuits. 

3. Evaluating communication and responsiveness

If you contact this lawyer for information or to help, the lawyer should be willing and able to provide that help. In particular, a lawyer should be able to help you get back your property and keep your insurance company’s feet to the fire.

Make sure that you get answers to your questions in a timely manner. There is nothing more frustrating than feeling ignored in your time of need. When you call the lawyer’s office, try to get the answers to some of these questions. 

Some lawyers may try to get you to the office just to get you to sign a fee agreement, but if you can ask some of these questions over the phone or through electronic mail already, after a few hours, the lawyer may actually understand the necessity of being in communication with you and plan to respond accordingly. 

Conclusion: How a California Personal Injury Lawyer can Help with Your Car Insurance Claim

Finding oneself in an auto accident is a very stressful experience. Thus, it is important to know how to get through the process using an attorney to get a fair evaluation and how to communicate with your claims representative.

When the insurer knows you are employing attorneys, they may overestimate or ridicule it. The presence of an attorney can prevent depraved and annoying acts.

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