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Traffic Accident Attorney Omaha
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Injured In A Car Crash In Omaha? 7 Reasons You Need A Traffic Accident Attorney
Traffic accidents are a common and unfortunate cause for serious injuries and fatalities in Omaha. In 2016, the U.S. saw 34,439 fatal motor vehicle crashes resulting in 37,461 deaths. While California, New York, And Texas had nearly 3,000 fatal crashes each, Nebraska is low on the list with 194 crashes resulting in 218 deaths. Still, 218 deaths is unacceptable.
If you’ve been injured in a traffic accident, don’t wait to get legal help. Swift action is needed to get you on the road to recovery, and get compensation into your pocket. Here are 7 reasons to contact an attorney right away:
1. Other drivers might have been under the influence
If you’ve been injured in a traffic accident and the other driver(s) were under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you could be entitled to additional compensation you can only get with a lawyer on your side. If an insurance company offers you a settlement and you don’t know the other driver was drunk, you might not have a reason to negotiate a higher settlement.
Drunk driving accidents are common in Nebraska
In 2016, 126 Nebraska drivers were killed in traffic accidents involving alcohol. Of that number, 82% (103 drivers) were confirmed to have a blood alcohol content (BAC) greater than or equal to the legal limit of 0.08%.
Without an attorney, you might accept a lowball settlement offer before learning if other drivers were under the influence. Accepting an offer too soon is risky because your claim could be worth far more than what you’re being offered. If alcohol was involved, a lawyer might be able to double or triple what you’re offered by an insurance company.
2. If you were under the influence, you shouldn’t handle your case alone
If you were under the influence at the time of the crash, you don’t want to handle your case alone. Even if you believe you played a part in causing the accident, you don’t know if other drivers are also partially responsible. If you try to defend yourself without a lawyer, and take full legal responsibility, you’ll sell yourself short if another driver turns out to be legally responsible.
Accepting full responsibility without a lawyer has dire financial consequences. You’ll be fully responsible for all damages to all vehicles and all injuries sustained by everyone involved. A skilled attorney will fight hard to make sure all responsible parties split legal and financial accountability.
3. Insurance companies love lowballing settlement offers
Your settlement offer might seem like a lot of money, even though it probably isn’t. A traffic accident attorney can tell you if the amount you’re being offered is below average based on your case details.
Although insurance companies are supposed to compensate for damages and injuries, they also want to keep costs down. You’re going to want the highest settlement possible, and they’re going to start negotiating with you at the bottom. Having a lawyer negotiate for you means you can save your physical and emotional energy for healing from your injuries.
4. Negotiating a high settlement might not cover your expenses
Without a traffic accident attorney, you’ll be tempted to negotiate a settlement amount with an insurance claims adjuster. There’s nothing wrong with that. With solid negotiation skills, you can get a claims adjuster to agree to pay you the highest amount allowed for your claim. The problem is, even the highest settlement amount they’re allowed to offer might not be enough to cover your expenses.
You don’t want to accept a settlement offer and realize it wasn’t enough six months later. It might take you longer than expected to recover, or you might need extended treatment for an injury that doesn’t heal and slowly turns into a long-term impairment. Between the cost of extra treatment and lost wages from work, you’ll wish you had talked to a lawyer before accepting a settlement.
5. Your case might be worth thousands more than the insurance company offers
Without a case evaluation made by an experienced traffic accident attorney, you might not know how much your case is really worth. For example, a lawyer can help you recover damages from multiple parties involved in causing the accident. On your own, you probably won’t get very far. A lawyer can also help you recover compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
Without a traffic accident lawyer to tell you what your case is worth, you might think you have to accept the first settlement offer made by an insurance company. This offer will always be low. Insurance companies exist to turn a profit, and claims adjusters are trained to lowball offers and make you work hard to negotiate every extra dollar. They’re counting on you becoming too exhausted to care at some point.
6. If you caused the accident, you need a lawyer to handle your case
If you’re at fault for the accident that caused your injuries, having a skilled attorney is the smart way to navigate the court system. Without a lawyer, you might not be aware that you can get compensated for your injuries. You might not even file a claim. A lawyer will help you navigate the legal system when you’ve caused a traffic accident in Omaha.
6. You may not understand all potential damages and complexities
If your injuries have caused a permanent disability or disfigurement, you’re automatically entitled to more compensation. You’ll have to fight for that in court, which means you need a skilled traffic accident attorney in Omaha.
When you’re married, even if your spouse wasn’t in the car at the time of the accident, they might be suffering what’s called ‘loss of consortium.’ Loss of consortium refers to the negative effect your injuries have on your marriage, which can include loss of companionship, emotional support, and physical assistance. You can recover compensation for loss of consortium.
An insurance company won’t offer you additional compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, or the impact on your spouse. They’re going to offer you what their computer algorithm tells them based on information related to your case. An attorney filing a lawsuit on your behalf will fight hard to get you all the compensation you’re entitled to.
7. Filing a lawsuit on your own is risky
You may be considering filing a lawsuit on your own. If so, you’ll need to file specific paperwork while adhering to complex rules. It’s not as easy as it looks. You can’t just show up to the courthouse, declare your intent to sue, sign some papers, and be on your way. If you don’t follow the rules – from the font size of your brief to how you cite legal precedent – you could lose your case.
Another downside to filing a lawsuit on your own is the difficulty you’ll face proving your case. There are rules about what evidence you can present, and what witnesses you can bring. You’ll be restricted in the way you can ask questions, too. The possibility of getting a judge or jury to side with you will be slim. You’ll be in unfamiliar and scary territory, and that will prevent you from proving your injuries and your right to compensation to the extent that a skilled lawyer can.
Don’t deal with insurance settlements alone
The amount of financial compensation you’re entitled to depends on several factors like state law, the nature and extent of your injuries, required medical treatments, the ability to prove facts, the loss of your income, and each involved party’s insurance coverage. The benefit to having an experienced traffic accident attorney on your side is not having to navigate difficult and unfamiliar terrain alone.
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident in Omaha, seek medical treatment and then contact a personal injury lawyer who specializes in traffic accidents. You’ll get a free consultation, so you’ve got nothing to lose.