What Does a Car Accident Lawyer Do?

Your car accident attorney is your personal representative through the entire process of recovery from your auto accident, typically from the moment you contact them through the successful outcome of a trial, if necessary.
Main Blog What Does a Car Accident Lawyer Do?

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A car accident often results in multiple types of losses for which you might be entitled to compensation. However, obtaining that compensation could depend on whether or not you hire a qualified car accident attorney.

Before beginning your search for the right car accident lawyer, it’s important to better understand the type of car accident claim and compensation you could be entitled to. With this, you’re in a better position to find lawyers who deal with car accidents of that particular kind.

Ultimately, the landscape of car crash lawyers isn’t a level playing field, and understanding what you need and what questions to ask can help you find the best attorney to meet your needs.

Key Takeaways

  • A car accident lawyer is essential for any type of car accident case, whether it is large or small.
  • Car accident lawyers help navigate your case and help you get the compensation you may be entitled to, while simultaneously protecting you from undue negligence.
  • DFW Injury Lawyers is a reputable team of trail lawyers experienced with auto accident representation.

Types of Car Accident Claims

Car accidents aren’t all the same, which is why it’s so important to find a car accident lawyer knowledgeable about your type of accident and claim.

  • Head-on collisions. Known as some of the most dangerous and deadly accidents, head-on collisions involve two vehicles hitting head-on. The increased danger results from the combined force of both vehicles hitting one another bumper to bumper, compared to other accidents where both vehicles may be traveling in the same direction.
  • T-bone accidents. This type of accident occurs when one vehicle impacts another vehicle’s side, forming a “T” shape. An example of this type of accident would be a car running a red light and impacting the side of a vehicle traveling perpendicular to it.
  • Rear-end collisions. Rear-end collisions occur when one vehicle hits another vehicle from behind. It’s a common misconception that the rear driver is always responsible for the collision. In the state of Texas, for instance, negligence can be assigned to both the front driver and the rear driver. It may also include third-party drivers in the case of multiple rear-end collisions.
  • Low-impact crashes. A car accident at a low speed, like in a parking lot or while traveling below 25 miles per hour, may seem less likely to produce a compensable claim. However, even these types of accidents can result in devastation.
  • Single-car crashes. Fault might seem cut and dry if you are the sole party involved in an accident, but that isn’t always the case. These cases could be due to a manufacturer defect, in which case your accident claim lawyers can help you assign fault and protect your rights. Other liable parties could be a loading company, rental car company, private land owner, or more. There’s often more than initially meets the eye, making a legal expert a considerable asset.
  • Pileups. Most common on interstate highways, pileups involve an initial accident that causes a chain reaction of additional accidents because other drivers can’t stop in time to avoid the crash.

No matter what type of car accident you’ve been involved in, hiring a car accident compensation lawyer is essential to help you navigate a claim, protect your rights, and get the payout you deserve.

Why Hire an Attorney After a Car Accident?

An accident is stressful. In fact, accidents are so stressful that the American Psychological Association states that vehicle accidents are the leading cause of PTSD in the general population. Hiring a reputable car accident injury lawyer can reduce the burden and stress of litigation associated with a vehicle crash, allowing the victim to heal more peacefully.

Even if you master filing a car accident claim on your own (which can be tiresome and stressful, especially if you’re injured), hiring a car accident attorney helps ensure you get the maximum monetary recovery for your injuries and losses.

Injuries aside, navigating a car accident compensation claim is complex and something most people would not want to tackle on their own. Hiring an attorney can relieve you of the burden of communicating with insurance carriers and their claims attorneys, helping establish proper fault and negligence, and ensuring you are protected and compensated as you should be.

Without a Texas car accident lawyer, the other driver’s insurance company may attempt to low-ball you on a settlement, claim your injuries are from preexisting conditions, or try to blame you for (some or all of) the accident. Any information you give them might also be used against you at a later time, like at trial.

Not to mention, the car accident claim time limit could expire before you file. Car accident claim lawyers can take care of all the necessary filings in a timely manner on your behalf.

“Our job is to take on the hassle of dealing with the insurance companies so that our clients can focus on healing themselves and their families and to use our years of expertise to guide them towards the best possible outcome.” — Kevin Edwards, DFW Injury Lawyers Founding Partner

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What a Car Accident Lawyer Does

Your car accident attorney is your personal representative through the entire process of recovery from your auto accident, typically from the moment you contact them through the successful outcome of a trial, if necessary.

Below, we’ll cover answers to the question, “How do car accident lawyers work?”

1. Investigate the Car Accident

Part of the car accident claim process is an investigation into the cause of the accident. While law enforcement officers can write up an initial accident report, insurance claims attorneys and accident investigators will likely also be involved in determining fault.

Your attorney represents YOU in this process, ensuring you aren’t assigned undue fault during civil litigation. They aim to prove that the party(ies) who were negligent are held responsible for the losses they caused.

2. Gather Relevant Evidence to Build Your Car Accident Case

Proving that you are owed compensation for losses and injuries requires your attorney to build a case based on accident scene photographs, police reports, medical diagnosis and examinations, and witness statements. It may also involve hiring the right expert consultants to review certain parts of your case and provide expert opinions to be used to support your claim.

3. File Your Car Accident Lawsuit

Filing a lawsuit means your attorney is aggressively seeking compensation for your losses on your behalf. A car accident lawyer knows how to protect their clients from insurance carriers, biased jurors, and opposing attorneys. They will help to build your case and file everything within the statute of limitations.

4. Negotiate With Insurers for a Fair Car Accident Settlement

Often, many insurance carriers prefer to settle car accident injury compensation claims out of court or before a case is brought to trial. This helps reduce their total legal expenses spent fighting the case.

Unfortunately, the compensation offered by insurers is usually low: It might not cover the costs incurred by the injured party, including possible lost wages, pain and suffering, or future losses (economic and non-economic). To make sure you get the compensation for a car accident you may be owed, you need a qualified attorney to negotiate the settlement.

5. If Necessary, Represent You in Trial

Some cases do end up in trial: Check that your attorney has trial experience. If you want to know what to ask a car accident lawyer, asking about their trial background is hands down one of the most important questions. You don’t want your attorney to pressure you to accept a small settlement offer because they don’t want to take your case to trial.

What Kind of Lawyer Do I Need For a Car Accident?

To receive the most compensation for a car accident injury and losses, look for a highly qualified attorney familiar with your type of car crash and who also has trial experience. You can’t tell from the onset of your case whether or not your case will go to trial, so ensuring your attorney has trial experience is essential.

Before you select representation, here is our list of what to look for in a car accident lawyer:

  • Background and experience in handling car accident lawsuits: Most attorneys or firms have information about the types of claims they handle along with some of their successful case results listed. At DFW Injury Lawyers, we’re proud of our successful case results.
  • Types of cases handled by the law firm: Some firms are considered “full service,” which means their areas of practice extend beyond personal injury. This means they may also practice other areas of law, like real estate or probate law. Some firms, like DFW Injury Lawyers, dedicate our entire firm and practice to personal injury. Specialization can improve the quality of service you receive.
  • Attorney fee structure: When you’ve been involved in an automobile accident, you may find yourself without a lot of cash, especially if you end up missing work due to your injuries. An attorney who operates on a contingency fee basis could likely be the best fit, as you won’t have to worry about paying any fees until your case is won. At that point, a percentage will be taken directly from your settlement to cover legal expenses.
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Questions to Ask a Car Accident Lawyer

When you schedule a consultation with an attorney, here are some basic questions you’ll want to ask.

  • Background in handling car accident lawsuits. Find out how many cases your attorney has tried and whether or not they’ve handled a case like yours.
  • Trial experience and professional networks (in case of a potential lawsuit). This includes verdicts they have won for personal injury clients, as well as other professionals they could recommend (like a chiropractor, for example). If a car accident firm is well-established, they should have a deep bench of expert witnesses to call on to help strengthen your case.
  • Past success in car accident lawsuits. How successful has your attorney been in recovering compensation for claims like yours?
  • Attorney fee structure and hidden fees. You’ll want to know what you can be expected to pay and when. Ask about court filing fees, expert fees, and office expenses (like copies, etc.). If they operate on a contingency-fee structure, ask what percentage they will take from your settlement.
  • Personal attention and time devoted to your case. Will you meet with and discuss your case primarily with an attorney or with their staff? How personalized will your care be?

You can get a good feel for how well you’ll get along with your lawyer just by discussing these questions with them.

How Long Do You Have to Get a Lawyer After a Car Accident?

You can hire an attorney immediately upon having an accident. In each state, a statute of limitations governs how long you have to file a lawsuit. In Texas, the statute of limitations is generally two years for a car accident case. Hiring an attorney sooner rather than later is beneficial, particularly since evidence and events are freshest in the days and weeks immediately following the accident.

How Much Does a Car Accident Lawyer Cost?

There are numerous different kinds of fee structures available, but a contingency fee is likely the one you’ll see when shopping for representation. That is what you will find at DFW Injury Lawyers. We charge no upfront fees and we don’t get paid unless you win.

How Long Does a Car Accident Lawsuit Take?

There’s no average time for car accident claim lawsuits. Each case is unique, and some are more involved than others. Some cases could last for weeks, months, or years. Your attorney can help you better understand a realistic timeline for your claim.

How is Fault Determined in a Car Accident?

Texas is an at-fault state: That means the party at fault in an accident pays for the damages. However, Texas also operates under the modified comparative negligence rule. This means that in order to collect compensation for damages, you must be less than 50% at fault. It’s essential to have a five-star Texas car accident attorney so you’re not assigned more negligence than you’re responsible for.

Compensation for Car Accident

After an accident, you might be wondering what you could receive. Car accident compensation examples include medical expenses, property damage, funeral and burial costs, pain and suffering, and even reduced earning capacity and future losses for your injuries.

There are two categories of damages for which you might be entitled.

  • Economic damages. Economic damages are damages that are tangible, like medical expenses and property damage.
  • Non-economic damages. Non-economic damages are damages that are intangible, like emotional pain and suffering, loss of ability to enjoy life as you did before, or loss of consortium.

An attorney can help you determine how much you are owed in both economic and non-economic damages.

Car Accident Attorney Near Me

Looking for a Texas car accident attorney? You’ve just found them. DFW Injury Lawyers has offices to serve you in Dallas, Fort Worth, and Arlington. We serve the entire state of Texas, so no matter where you have your accident within the state, we can help.

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Meet the Car Accident Attorneys at DFW Injury Lawyers | No Upfront Fees

When you need help getting the compensation for your accident, turn to the lawyers who muscle up against low-balling insurance companies. Our fee schedule is simple: We don’t collect until you get the settlement you deserve. The team at DFW Injury Lawyers is experienced, aggressive, and works tirelessly to get you the compensation you deserve.

Contact our office today, and let’s talk about your case.

Article Sources

  1. Motor Vehicle Accidents Are Leading Cause of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder, According to New Book
  2. Tex. Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 16.003

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