Should I Hire a Lawyer After a Minor Car Accident?
If you’ve been involved in a minor car accident, you might be left wondering whether you need to hire a lawyer. After all, that “nice” insurance adjuster may act like you can handle the claim on your own. But you need to be careful. Although your injuries and damage to your vehicle might not be as serious or extensive as those caused by a violent or catastrophic crash, they still could have a significant impact on your health and finances.
In many instances, talking with an experienced car accident lawyer is a good idea. Having qualified legal representation on your side can help you understand the full extent of compensation that should be available to you. A skilled attorney will also provide vital protection if your injuries and other losses end up being worse than initially believed.
At the very least, speaking with a lawyer about your crash could help you get your questions answered and decide how best to move forward. At Stokes Stemle, LLC, we are here to help. Contact us today for a free case review.
What Is Considered a Minor Car Accident?
A minor car accident could be a low-speed rear-end collision, a sideswipe accident, or a slight fender bender. Minor collisions usually result in damage to the vehicle that can be repaired, and only slight injuries that should not require emergency care.
Although this might seem like something that could easily be handled by exchanging insurance information and allowing the insurance companies to resolve matters on their own, that is not always the case. If your injuries turn out to be more severe than you initially believed, or if there is a dispute over who is to blame for the crash, it might be necessary to hire a lawyer to protect your interests.
The Damages May Be More Than You Think
Any time two vehicles collide, there is a risk that the occupants could suffer lasting injuries. This is true even if the collision happened at a low speed. Two common injuries that often result from minor crashes include whiplash and concussions.
Some symptoms of whiplash include:
- Stiffness or swelling in the neck
- Neck pain when trying to move
- Headaches and memory loss
- Muscle spasms
- Numbness or tingling in the arms
Some symptoms of a concussion include:
- Blurred vision
- Ringing in the ears
- Nausea and vomiting
Both whiplash and concussions symptoms could worsen in the hours, days, and weeks after the crash. They could eventually require a hospital visit, imaging tests, therapy and rehabilitation, prescriptions for medication, and other costly and unexpected expenses.
If your injuries start to hinder your ability to perform daily functions, you might be forced to miss work. This can result in lost wages at a time when your medical costs and vehicle repair bills are starting to pile up.
These are some examples of how the damages resulting from a minor collision can be significantly more than you might have expected.
What You Should Always Do After a Minor Accident
After a minor car accident, there are specific steps you can take to protect yourself. Knowing that even a minor crash could have significant repercussions later, you should always:
- Report the collision to law enforcement and save a copy of the crash report.
- Take pictures of the accident scene, including the position of the vehicles, vehicle damage, skid marks, and any visible injuries.
- Get the names and contact information of any witnesses.
- Seek medical attention as soon as possible.
- Keep all medical bills and related documentation.
- Follow your treatment plan, including attending all follow-up visits and getting any tests that are recommended.
- Refrain from posting about your crash on social media.
- Contact a car accident lawyer to discuss your rights.
Why You May Need a Car Accident Lawyer for a Minor Accident
While the other driver might be willing to accept the blame for the crash, things aren’t always that easy. Disputes over who was at fault and how much compensation the at-fault party owes are common, and discussions about relatively minor collisions could easily turn contentious.
Having a knowledgeable lawyer on your side could be crucial to pursuing the fair compensation you deserve. This is particularly true if:
- You discover “hidden” injuries after the crash, or if relatively minor symptoms worsen over time.
- There is a disagreement over who was at fault for the crash.
- The other party (or the insurer, more likely) refuses to offer what you think is fair compensation.
- You have doubts about your legal knowledge and ability to handle your claim on your own.
Insurance companies have entire teams working to deny or diminish claims filed against them. That’s why it is often necessary to bring in a knowledgeable car accident lawyer to level the playing field. Getting the insurance company to pay you what you’re owed is often a challenge. But a skilled lawyer from Stokes Stemle, LLC will know the tactics the other side will deploy ─ and how to fight for what is fair and just.
Contact Stokes Stemle, LLC for Help Today
The Montgomery car accident lawyers of Stokes Stemle, LLC represent those who’ve been hurt in car accidents, both minor and severe. No case is too large or too small for us to handle. What matters to us is seeing that justice is served for those who’ve been harmed.
If you’re worried about the cost of hiring us, don’t be. We represent all injury clients on a contingency basis. This means we won’t charge you any fees until we recover compensation for you. There is absolutely no risk to hire us, even for a minor car accident claim. Contact us today for a free case review.