Five Circumstances Under Which You Need A Lawyer After A Minor Crash
Thousands of motorists routinely handle minor car accidents without suing each other or hiring lawyers. For example, you may be able to settle your paint scratch dispute without consulting a lawyer. However, the following situations call for the involvement of a lawyer even if the crash is minor:
Liability Is Unclear
Dealing with a minor accident where liability is clear isn't difficult. For example, if you have parked your car (correctly) and an inexperienced driver hits it while backing out of the parking, then you aren't liable for the accident. You can easily get your claim settled without legal representation. Contrast this with a midnight fender bender involving three cars and all drivers are disputing their contribution to the crash. In such a case, better involve a lawyer to help you sort out the liability issues.
Someone Has Been Injured
You should always consult an auto accident lawyer for any crash that results in injury. This should be the case even if the injury seems relatively minor. This is because you can't be sure the injury will stay minor. The injuries may develop into major complications later on, especially if it turns out that the victim had a pre-existing injury that has been worsened by the accident. According to the eggshell plaintiff doctrine, you will be responsible for such a victim's damages even if a healthy person would have suffered the same level of injuries.
One of You Doesn't Have Insurance Coverage
Having car insurance makes it easy to settle car insurance disputes. This is especially true for minor disputes. In most cases, you just exchange your insurance information and contacts and the insurance company settles the ensuing claim. However, don't expect such a straightforward process if there is no auto insurance coverage.
First, if you don't have coverage, the other motorist can easily sue you and come after your personal effects for their damages. Secondly, if the other motorist doesn't have coverage, then they may find it difficult to pay your damages out of their pockets. Consulting a lawyer will help you with the way forward for each case.
You Have Been Sued
Lastly, you also need to consult a lawyer if the other party has sued you or is threatening to do so. Every time you are sued for an auto accident, consult a lawyer even if the accident is minor. It might be that the other motorist is just a difficult person or that you have underestimated the severity of the damages.
Check with a law firm like the Law Office Of Andrew J Leger Jr for more information.