Should I Represent Myself in a Car Accident Claim in Greenville County?

After a car accident that was not your fault, you may be tempted to represent yourself during the claim. After all, you can read about your rights and basic rules for filing a car accident claim. Why should you hire a Greenville car wreck attorney if you have the truth on your side?

Let us examine in detail what this endeavor would entail.

1. Filing Paperwork within Short Deadlines

Insurance companies have their own rules when it comes to reporting a crash and filing an accident claim. They do not care that you are still in hospital, recovering from severe injuries. And they will not grant you an extension because you are in the process of obtaining documents needed to justify your claim.

This is one of the main reasons why you should hire a lawyer. Once you signed the retainer agreement, the attorney becomes your legal representative and has the right to:

  • Obtain documents
  • File paperwork
  • Represent you in various proceedings

2. Estimating Your Damages Accurately

When it comes to calculating the amount you demand as damages, you only get one chance. Any negotiations with an insurance adjuster will go downwards, not upwards from this amount.

You have to be able to estimate:

  • Your total medical care costs – both present and future
  • Property damage
  • Lost wages
  • Whether your injuries will prevent you from returning to your job, which qualifies you for loss of earning capacity
  • A fair amount representing your non-economic damages for pain and suffering

So, why not start with a large amount to give yourself some space to negotiate? The answer is simple: insurance companies also do their math and know the average amount of damages you actually incurred.

If you ask for too much money, they will deny your claim and use the disproportionate difference as an argument in court if you file a lawsuit.

3. Collecting and Preserving Evidence

You will have to support any claim with evidence. However, you must follow strict rules for collecting evidence and the procedure for presenting it. Any mistake will make the respective piece of evidence inadmissible in court.

you should let a lawyer help you file an accident claim

Insurance adjusters will pick on any single irregularity:

  • How you documented the accident scene
  • The method you used for collecting the evidence
  • How you preserved the evidence

You should hire a Greenville car accident lawyer who will comply with all the rules for making sure that the evidence is intact and authentic.

4. Negotiating with the Insurer

The negotiation phase is the most difficult part of a car accident claim. And it will not be a balanced encounter if you represent yourself. The insurance adjuster who will face you has a similar training to a car crash attorney.

They know personal injury law. They know how to spot inconsistencies in statements. And they know how to manipulate you into saying things you don’t mean, such as:

  • Admitting fault
  • Contradicting yourself
  • Making claims that cannot be verified and can be used against you

Even if you manage to avoid all these pitfalls, the adjuster has one more trick up their sleeve: they can delay their final decision until the statute of limitations runs out. Once they are sure that you’ve lost the legal right, the insurer will present you with a lowball offer, which you can take or walk away with nothing.

5. Preparing Your Case for Court

Finally, although most car accident claims are settled during negotiations, some have to go to court. In this case, are you still confident that you can represent yourself? Negotiating with insurers is one thing, meeting all the requirements of Greenville civil courts is another.

Bringing a lawyer onboard at this late moment in your claim may be fruitless. The attorney does not have sufficient time to prepare your case. Plus, a lot of valuable evidence may have already been lost.

Let an Experienced Greenville Car Wreck Attorney Win Your Claim!

You can save yourself a lot of stress, effort and the risk of not getting fair compensation if you let a legal professional fight for your rights. An experienced Greenville car wreck attorney knows how to find, preserve and present evidence. They have in-depth knowledge of the law and hands-on experience, both during negotiations and in court.

Moreover, our lawyers work on a contingency fee basis and offer each new client a free case evaluation, so you don’t have to worry about paying advance legal fees. Don’t delay your claim process – call us today at 864-310-7897!