After an accident, you need all the help you can get. Filing an insurance claim might be helpful to get you the damages you need, but even your own insurance company may try to undercut the value of your case or make it hard to get the money you need. If you were injured in a car crash, the question of who to call first will be an important one.
Your first call after a car crash should be for an ambulance if you have injuries, but the question of whether to call your insurance company or a lawyer will depend on your injuries and your needs. If no one was injured in the crash, you can probably call your insurance company for a claim. If you suffered injuries, speak to a lawyer before putting any statements on record with the insurance company. Certainly talk to an attorney before discussing injuries with the other driver’s insurance company, as they might use any information you give them against you.
Working with a car accident lawyer can help protect your interests and help control the narrative of what happened. After a car accident, call The Queenan Law Firm’s car accident attorneys for help negotiating with insurance companies and getting the compensation you need – potentially through a lawsuit. For a free case consultation, call (817) 476-1797.
Should I Call a Car Accident Lawyer or My Insurance Company After a Crash?
After a crash, you may have the choice of whether to file a lawsuit or a car insurance claim. Some states use no-fault insurance rules that require you to file with your own insurance company rather than filing a lawsuit, and they only allow you to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance or a court of law if your case is severe. Regardless of these rules, you should always speak with a lawyer about your case first if it involved any injuries.
When you face injuries in a car accident, you should work with an accident injury lawyer on your case. Trying to pursue compensation through an insurance claim – whether that be with your own insurance or the other driver’s insurance – might set you up for low payouts. Insurance companies are businesses, and they often work to reduce payouts and deny claims as much as they can to save money. These insurance companies also have no requirements to protect your interests as a victim, potentially leading them to take advantage of customers and claimants.
Lawyers, on the other hand, are required by ethics laws and state rules to protect their clients’ best interests. This means helping to maximize your payout and protecting you from counterclaims and denials.
Your experienced Dallas car accident lawyer can also counsel you on whether your case is worth a lawsuit or whether a negotiated insurance claim could be enough. If you faced no injuries in the crash, it is possible that an insurance claim will be enough to get you the compensation you need for vehicle repairs. In that case, a lawsuit will be unnecessary, and you might not even need a lawyer’s help. When you get a lawyer involved, they can also negotiate with insurance on your behalf and file a lawsuit if the insurance companies do not comply.
Is it Okay to Talk to Insurance Without a Lawyer After a Car Accident?
One important factor in whether to call a lawyer or your insurance company first is whether it’s okay to talk to your insurance company without a lawyer. You may want to trust your insurance company, but many insurance companies will take your words and twist them into excuses to deny coverage. In most cases, it is best to talk to a lawyer first for advice on how to deal with the insurance company. In the most delicate cases, your lawyer might even insist on being present for any conversations with insurance in order to protect your rights.
Insurance companies often ask for recorded statements. Any statements you make to the insurance company will be used in their decision as to who is at fault and whether the claim should get paid. They can also potentially use your statements against you if the case goes to court. That means that anything you say could potentially provide them with ammunition to use against you, even if you had the best intentions in saying what you said.
Even something like an apology could be misconstrued as an admission of fault. Your lawyer can help advise you on what to say or how to phrase certain things so that the insurance company doesn’t twist your words against you. Your lawyer can also assist you in drafting statements for you to sign rather than allowing the insurance company to lead the conversation and create their own narrative.
This is all especially important if you are working with the other driver’s insurance company. They will want to do everything in their power to deny that their driver was at fault and to drop the claim. In many cases where the insurance company denies their driver’s fault, you will need to go through the courts to get compensation.
Having your attorney involved from the beginning can help control the facts and the flow of information, setting your case up for success from the earliest stages.
Make Our Injury Lawyers Your First Call
The Queenan Law Firm’s personal injury lawyers represent victims in car accident cases and all sorts of injury claims. For a free legal consultation, call us today at (817) 476-1797.