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Should You Contact an Attorney After an Auto Accident?

A hand writing on a glass the words Need a Lawyer? to illustrate whether you should contact an attorney after an auto-accident.

Automobile accidents are an everyday occurrence in Nevada as they are in every other state in the country, but when do you need an attorney? That’s a good question – especially if you realize that accidents just happen to be a fact of life that we can’t always do anything about. Whether it’s a matter of inattention or being in the wrong place at the wrong time, the idea is to avoid them as much as possible or inevitably find ourselves paying more for our auto insurance premiums.

There were, according to the Nevada Department of Transportation, more than 50,000 auto accidents, with approximately one-third of those crashes resulting in personal injuries, and a total of 259 traffic deaths statewide in 2013. Often, following an automobile accident in which injuries are sustained by you or someone else in the other car, your first question is, should you contact an attorney?

Well, in many cases – it should be a consideration – because, let’s face it, we live in a sue-happy world, and there’s no enjoyment in being on the wrong end of a lawsuit. And, generally speaking, a lot depends on what exactly happened, what types of injuries were suffered, and to whom. If you’re not injured, then the answer would be, probably not.

However, if you or anyone in your vehicle has sustained some type of injury from the accident, especially if possible permanent injury is involved or an expected significant amount of time is lost from work, school, or household duties, you should seek an attorney to represent you in a claim against the party responsible for those injuries.

Contact an attorney who specializes in personal injury, preferably one with experience in auto accident litigation. The initial consultation is typically free and it can provide you with the peace of mind to get past the incident. There are several guidelines or tips to keep in mind that determine your need to see an attorney and they are:

  • The injuries sustained are serious in nature, requiring hospitalization (broken bones/internal injuries) or are likely to be permanent (paralysis)
  • A death has resulted
  • Where fault is clearly an issue and you could be held responsible
  • Other parties, such as a pedestrian or additional autos, were involved
  • You suspect the other party may sue you even though they’re at fault
  • Accident took place in a construction zone or heavy equipment was present
  • Police report doesn’t accurately describe the accident and puts you at fault
  • Vital technical, legal or medical issues are involved
  • Your liability insurance limits are low
  • You have no insurance or your insurance company suggests that they have no record of you paying your premium and your insurance has lapsed.
  • Your insurer starts distancing himself from you (won’t return calls)
  • Your insurer brings in their own attorney

It’s usually a good idea to proceed with any legal advice or ultimate litigation early on following an auto accident serious enough to hire an attorney. Should you decide to put it off, you may be doing so at your own possible financial risk. In any case, the Nevada state personal injury statute of limitations is 2 years from the date of the injury. Whichever you choose, remember – the key is to protect yourself.

Protect your wallet as well by making sure you’re getting the best rate on your auto insurance. Get a free auto insurance quote online or call Freeway today at (800) 777-5620.

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