If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you will undoubtedly ask yourself, “Should I get a lawyer?” For the most part, people are intimidated by lawyers and perceive them to be expensive. On the other hand, ICBC adjusters are well-trained professionals, dealing with hundreds of claims such as yours each year. Why would your claim be any more special? A lawyer understands that a motor vehicle accident can be a life-changing event and will treat you accordingly.
If ICBC was prepared to offer you 100% of what you were actually entitled to, then there would be far less lawyers practicing in the area of personal injury litigation. Since ICBC adjusters are trying to keep down the amount they pay per claim, so as to minimize the amount they pay out on behalf of ICBC, you will rarely, if ever, get a 100% dollar offer from an adjuster without a lawyer.
Hiring a lawyer immediately following an accident is not always necessary. However, it may be needed in situations where:
- A family member has died;
- A serious injury requiring hospitalization is involved;
- Liability for the accident is unclear and you have suffered injuries;
- ICBC is denying your claim because of the nature of the collision;
- There will be a loss of future earnings or the need for future care will be required.
The reason for this is that your lawyer will need to carry out an early investigation before evidence is lost and will also need to obtain a number of expert reports ensuring that your claim is fully developed. However, you have two years following the accident to make a claim for compensation. That being said, it is better to contact a lawyer as soon as practicable so as to determine your rights and your entitlements.
Although a lawyer usually provides a legal bill based on percentage of recovery, in most cases, the lawyer will obtain an offer from ICBC far in excess of what you may have been able to do on your own. Therefore, you are more likely to net more with a lawyer after you pay him or her than what you would have obtained without a lawyer. Of interest to many is the fact that once you retain a lawyer, you cease dealing directly with ICBC – an experience which can be time-consuming, frustrating and stressful.
At Einfeld Law, we provide a free initial consultation. One of our experienced personal injury lawyers will take the time to explain what it is you’re entitled to and familiarize you with the process. Your health and your wellbeing are worth it. Why settle for less?