If you've been hurt by a careless driver, it's time to get compensated. Those injuries, your wrecked car and so much more are all considered damages. Damages are the way that your life has been negatively impacted by your accident, and you can get money for each and every one of them. To do so, however, there must be a source of funds. The money has to come from somewhere, so read on to find out where and how you can get paid:
The Contingency Fee Connection
One of your first moves should be to meet with a personal injury attorney. You will find out, sooner or later, that depending on the insurance to compensate you fairly without legal representation is like nailing jello to the wall. Interestingly enough, most personal injury attorneys work on what is called a contingency fee basis. You have probably heard those television advertisements for attorneys that promise "no fee unless you win your case". What this means to you is that you won't need to pay any money upfront, as long as the attorney agrees to take your case.
Since the attorney only gets paid if the case is successful, they have a vested interest in only taking cases that are likely to produce a nice settlement. For example, if you end up getting a $250,000 settlement, your personal injury attorney may get 20% of that ($50,000). If the attorney agrees to take your case, you probably have a good case.
Where's the Money?
Another key step in your first appointment with your new personal injury attorney is the matter of the at-fault driver's insurance carrier. While most drivers do carry adequate insurance, lack of it could make your entire effort to get money damages fruitless. Be sure to arrive with the other guy's insurance information.
If the driver that caused your wreck has no insurance, the next step might be to locate other assets that could be used to pay money damages. Some potential sources might be:
- Savings accounts
- Real estate
- Businesses owned
- Investment accounts
If your attorney locates sufficient sources of funds, the court can issue an order freezing those assets until the case is over.
Fortunately, you may not have to take your case all the way to court to get compensation. Most personal injury cases are settled outside of court, and this can occur from the moment you let the other side know that you intend to sue if your demands are not met, all the way up until the final verdict in court is read.
Contact an auto accident attorney for more information and assistance.