Getting into an auto accident is something that happens to millions of Americans. In fact, on average there are around 6 million auto accidents in the US each year. While not every accident involves injury, around half of that number do. If you have been injured in an accident, you may need to hire a personal injury attorney. An attorney can help ensure that you are legally protected and that you receive the proper insurance payout. If you have been injured, here's what you should know about hiring an attorney.
Personal Injury Attorneys Work on Contingency
One reason that many are reluctant to hire a personal injury attorney is that they fear they will be unable to pay legal fees. What you should be aware of is that attorneys who work in personal injury are most often paid on a contingency basis. This means that your attorney will only be paid if you receive a settlement. The contingency fee that attorneys charge is somewhere between 33 and 40 percent. Some states also have laws that put an upper limit on the percentage an attorney can charge for personal injury cases.
It's Unlikely That You Will Go to Trial
Another reason that many are unwilling to hire an attorney is that they do not want to go to trial. However, it's important to note that in most cases, the case is settled by your attorney before you even step foot into a courtroom. Around 95 percent of lawsuits end up with a pre-trial settlement. If you want to avoid going to court, your attorney can help you get a fair settlement. If you do end up in court, around 90 percent of these types of cases are won by the injured party.
Statutes of Limitations
After being involved in an auto accident, you will want to consult with an attorney as soon as possible. There are statutes of limitations for personal injury lawsuits. A statute of limitations is essentially a time limit for filing a claim after you realize that you have been injured. The limitations range from as short as one year to as much as six years depending on the state you file your claim in. Because of these limitations, you will want to seek legal counsel as soon as possible after suffering from an injury due to an accident.
If you are injured in an accident, hiring a personal injury attorney can be helpful. Personal injury attorneys work on contingency basis. It's also unlikely that you will need to go to trial since most attorneys are able to work out a fair settlement before going to court. There are also statutes of limitations involved with these types of cases, so it's important to seek legal counsel as soon as possible.