If you were injured in a car accident and you believed the other driver was at-fault, you may reach out to an Indianapolis car accident lawyer. You may assume that they’ll take your case since their job is to represent victims of car accidents. You’d likely be shocked if the lawyer said they couldn’t take your case. However, part of an attorney’s job is to analyze cases before accepting them. Clients often think they have a solid legal claim against an individual while attorneys think otherwise. There are several reasons for this, and we’ll discuss the most common ones in this post.
Attorneys Only Get Paid If They Recover Compensation on Your Behalf
Car accident lawyers, like others in the personal injury field, work on a contingent fee basis. This means you don’t have to pay them any fees upfront. You only pay them when they get compensation for you via an out-of-court settlement or a verdict. This ensures that victims can get legal representation regardless of their financial situation. However, it means that attorneys won’t take cases if there’s little to no chance that they will win. If they take a weak case, they won’t get paid and they would have wasted their time and effort.
It’s Not Clear Who is At Fault
In order for anyone to claim damages in a car accident, negligence first needs to be established. This includes proving that the other party breached their duty towards you and that the breach caused your injuries. If the police charged both drivers after a crash or there’s no evidence about what happened, it would be difficult to hold the other driver responsible. If you didn’t report the accident to the police or take photos of the scene and there are no witnesses, it would be very difficult to assign fault. No Indianapolis car accident lawyer would take a case like this.
You Didn’t Suffer Serious Injuries
If you suffered only a few bruises, scratches or scrapes, you don’t have a case. Even though those are injuries, they’ll heal quickly, and they can be easily treated with products in your medicine cabinet. Meanwhile, if your injuries only required one visit to the doctor and you won’t incur lots of medical expenses, the insurance company will likely settle with you. There shouldn’t be a need to threaten a lawsuit. Attorneys only get involved in serious cases. If you suffered multiple bone fractures, internal injuries, or traumatic brain injuries, you would likely have no trouble finding a lawyer. These types of injuries often require long-term treatment and result in high medical bills.
The Other Driver Doesn’t Have Enough Insurance
Sometimes, the at-fault driver is underinsured or uninsured and has no assets. Pursuing them for damages would be a waste of time. In some cases, an employer or another third party with more resources can be held liable. However, if your attorney can’t find another way to legally get compensation for you, they may not take your case.
The Statute of Limitations Has Passed
You have two years to file a personal injury lawsuit in Indiana. If you wait too long, the court won’t hear your case. Therefore, you shouldn’t approach a lawyer two weeks before time runs out or after the deadline has passed. If you do, they will turn you away.
If you want to file a successful claim, you must act promptly. This includes seeking immediate medical attention and calling an attorney at the earliest opportunity. Evidence can get lost or destroyed quickly after an accident and witnesses may forget what they saw. You don’t want your case to be hampered by such factors.
Contact Stewart|Phelps|Wood to Discuss Your Case
It’s not that car accident lawyers are looking for reasons to turn down cases. If we don’t take cases, we won’t make money. However, we need to ensure that we devote our time and energy to seriously injured victims whose lives could change drastically. We also need to avoid giving clients false hope. We won’t tell you we can get you thousands of dollars when we know it isn’t true.
If you want to know whether you have a case or not, contact the Indianapolis car accident attorneys at Stewart|Phelps|Woods. We’ll review your case for free and give you our expert opinion on whether we can help you. If you were seriously injured because of someone else’s negligence and we can prove it, we’ll fight for your right to claim compensation. Call us today!