Questions & Answers
Do You Have Personal Injury Questions After an Accident?
Our Fairfield Personal Injury Law Firm Has Answers
It is unfortunate that accidents are so common. However, just because personal injury is common does not mean that you are not experiencing pain and confusion. After all, the personal injury claim process can be complex. If you or a loved one has been injured, then you likely have a number of questions. You may want to know what your legal rights are after an accident or why you need a personal injury attorney. The legal professionals at Barnett, Bennett & Scott LLP Law Firm have taken the time to answer some common personal injury questions. If you have questions about your case, then please contact our Fairfield personal injury law firm to speak with our California attorneys.
Frequently Asked Personal Injury Questions
- What Is a Personal Injury?
- What Do I Do After a Personal Injury?
- How Do I Know If I Have a Personal Injury Case?
- Why Should I Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
- How Long Does it Take to Settle My Case?
- How Much Do I Pay in Attorney Fees?
- When Should I See a Lawyer?
- Can I Handle My Personal Injury Case on My Own?
- What Happens When the Person Responsible for My Injury Lacks Insurance?
- What Should I Bring With Me When I Meet With My Attorney?
- Do I Still Have a Case If My Medical Insurance Pays All My Medical Bills?
- How Do I Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer?
What Is a Personal Injury?
A personal injury is defined as any injury or loss inflicted on a person by another as a result of a negligent or intentional act. Personal injury claims and lawsuits involve numerous types of accidents. These may include: car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, medical malpractice, defective products, premises liability, dog bites and slip and fall accidents.
What Do I Do After a Personal Injury?
After an accident, it can be confusing to know what to do next. Not only do you want to make sure everyone involved is ok, but also that you get the maximum amount of compensation to handle your past, present and future bills. Our personal injury lawyer advises that you should take the following steps after a personal injury:
- Call Emergency Services: If you or someone else involved in the accident suffered an injury, then dial 911 immediately. If no party is seriously injured, then you should contact a tow truck and the police department. This will show your insurance company that you took responsible measures after the accident.
- Do Not Admit Fault: The atmosphere can be tense after a car wreck. You may be tempted to diffuse the situation by admitting fault. Insurance companies will try to spin your well-meaning apology into an admission of guilt. While you should be friendly and accommodating, be careful about what you say immediately after a wreck.
- File a Police Report: A full report is usually not available until several days after an accident. However, you should have the responding officer give you a report number. This can be used to request a report at a later date. It is important to know that even if a police report lists you as the one at fault, this does not mean our attorney cannot change the outcome of the case in your favor.
How Do I Know If I Have a Personal Injury Case?
Every case is different. Your ability to file a personal injury claim will depend on a number of unique factors. However, if you have been hurt as a result of someone else’s negligence, then you likely have reason for a claim and should contact our Fairfield personal injury law firm. We can evaluate your case (at no cost to you) in order to help determine whether you have a valid personal injury case.
Some common topics that an attorney will review for a personal injury case often involve:
- Duty of Care: “Duty of care” is a legal obligation imposed on an individual to maintain standards of reasonable care. For example, a medical professional is expected to practice according to official guidelines and standards in order to provide safe and effective care.
- Breach of Duty: Any negligent and reckless behavior from a person or company can constitute a “breach of duty.” Ultimately, a breach of duty occurs when someone was negligent and this negligence resulted in injury. For example, if the party responsible for your injury is deliberately negligent, then you may have a case.
- Cause: You may have questions over what party is responsible for causing your injuries. Finding cause can become quickly complicated and will be contested by the prosecution. Thankfully, our PI attorneys know the law and can help you determine and uphold cause.
- Damages: Our personal injury lawyers can help you prove the full extent of harm caused to you. Damages include, but are not limited to: Medical costs, past and future losses, wage loss, mental pain and suffering and other debts can be recovered.
Why Should I Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?
If you have been injured, then you now likely face unique and potentially life-altering challenges. For instance, you may have compounding medical bills piling up but are losing wages due to not being able to work. A Fairfield personal injury attorney can help you file a personal injury claim that seeks compensation to recover past, present and future damages related to your accident. If you receive a favorable settlement, then you can use these funds to pay for the damages you had, have or will incur as a result of your injury.
How Long Will It Take to Settle My Case?
There is no way to state with certainty how long a case will take because all cases are unique. More complex personal injury claims take longer to settle. Additionally, the more money that may be at stake for the insurance company, the longer it will take. If you have questions about the timeline for your particular case, your attorney will be able to give you a realistic idea.
How Much Will I Pay in Attorney Fees?
Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis — our Fairfield personal injury law firm included. This means that you only pay a fee for representation if we settle your claim or obtain a judgment in your favor. The fee is generally a percentage of the settlement or judgment we obtain for you.
When Should I See a Lawyer?
As soon as possible. After your injury, seek medical attention if needed of course — your health is most important. Afterwards, however, it is in your best interest to contact a California personal injury attorney. The longer you wait to contact a legal professional, the more likely evidence will disappear that could support your claim.
Can I Handle My Personal Injury Case on My Own?
If you file your own personal injury claim, nothing would make an insurance provider or at-fault party happier. After all, no one person can be a medical professional, legal professional and insurance adjuster all at once. However, you will need support from these industries in order to better your chances at a favorable outcome. Insurance companies and other parties will do everything in their power to challenge you. For this reason, you should contact our Fairfield personal injury law firm. We can investigate the details and protect your interests.
What Happens When the Person Responsible for My Injury Lacks Insurance?
If a negligent party has insufficient insurance, you can make a claim against your own insurance company if you have uninsured motorists’ coverage on your own auto insurance. Also, an attorney can help you investigate to determine if there is some insurance that the responsible party might have.
What Should I Bring When I Meet With My Attorney?
Your initial meeting with your lawyer will go much smoother if you are prepared for your meeting. It is important to bring:
- Questions: Much like going to the doctor, it can help you to better understand your situation by preparing a list of questions. For example, if you have been in a car accident, you might have questions about what parties could be at fault for your accident. It may be that improper municipal signage contributed to your injury.
- Note Taking Material: Make sure you make notes, however you prefer to. A phone, tablet or traditional pen and paper are great to write down questions, comments and other notes that may come up during your meeting.
- Supporting Documents: Locate and bring any documents that are relevant to your case. For example, if you have been in a car accident, bring any police reports and photographs. Additionally, if you have been injured, provide any relevant medical records from your doctor’s visits.
What If My Medical Insurance Pays All of My Medical Bills?
You might be worried if you have a case if your insurer pays all of your medical costs. Fortunately, you do have options available. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to file a claim for pain and suffering damages. Furthermore, even if your insurance pays your medical bills, the other party can still be held responsible for them.
How Do I Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer?
Do you have further questions about a personal injury claim? At Barnett, Bennett & Scott LLP Law Firm, our personal injury attorneys have represented people throughout Solano County. We represent injured people and their families in personal injury claims. We handle a wide range of injury claims including: car accidents, bicycle accidents, catastrophic personal injuries, product defects, nursing home negligence and elder abuse, construction site accidents, slip and fall injuries, workplace accidents and wrongful death.
We can help you file an insurance claim, negotiate a fair settlement and take your case to court. Contact us online or call 707-425-0671 to schedule a risk-free initial consultation.