Not every personal injury case needs an attorney. If the injuries from your accident case appear to be minor or you feel you are not entitled to receive compensation for your injuries and expenses you might consider settling the case yourself.
When Should You Handle Your Own Case?
If you live in a No-Fault State, you cannot sue unless your injuries are great enough or expensive enough to qualify for compensation. However, you may not immediately know the full extent of your injuries, which may take months after the accident to appear. After settling you could be faced with thousands of dollars in expenses to pay yourself.
Available Compensation Limitations
If you have already received the maximum allowable amount from insurance companies for your case or you are sure the party that caused the accident has few assets, then settling may be the best option. You may need to make an asset search to determine whether or not the other party can pay. This is something an attorney can do for you and present you with all possible options.
Your Injuries Appear to Be Minor
Again, if you want to settle your case without consulting with an attorney you will need to know the full extent of your injuries, which may not be immediately apparent. Once you accept a settlement offer you give up all future claims from the accident. A lawyer will advise you to wait until the right time to accept an offer.
When Personal Injury Insurance is Involved
You may feel that your insurance company or the insurance company of the party that caused the accident is on your side and will help you. However, while your goal is to get the greatest amount of compensation as possible, the insurance company’s objective is to pay out as little as possible.
It is the duty of a lawyer to negotiate to help you maximize your settlement and receive the full compensation you are entitled to. Almost all personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, collecting payment out of your settlement award. Payment to the attorney is based on a percentage of your settlement amount. The percentage may be based on whether you settle before a lawsuit is filed, after the lawsuit is filed, or if the case goes to a jury trial.