You may have heard the term “personal injury lawyer,” but you may not be aware of what that actually means. After an injury, a personal injury lawyer may be your best option to get the compensation you deserve. Hiring a personal injury lawyer does not mean you intend to sue the person responsible for your injury, but that you want to be sure you get the compensation you are entitled to under the law.
Types of Personal Injury
Before determining if you need to hire a personal injury attorney, you need to understand what a particular injury case requires. To qualify for personal injury compensation, you must have been injured due to someone else’s carelessness or negligence. The carelessness or negligence must have caused your injury as well. If this is the case, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, loss of income, loss of future earnings, emotional distress, loss of companionship, mental anguish, pain and suffering along with loss of consortium and loss of enjoyment of life. If these situations relate to your injury, a personal injury attorney may provide you with these seven benefits.
- Investigating Claims
When you work with Las Vegas personal injury attorneys, they often take your case on a contingency basis. This means that they only receive payment once your case is settled or a jury rules in your favor. This means that they screen cases carefully to be sure that there is a good chance of winning. A personal injury lawyer will take your information and any documentation you have, then investigate your claim to be sure that you have a valid case that is likely winnable in court.
- Obtaining Additional Evidence
Las Vegas personal injury lawyers often have their investigative team. This team will obtain police or incident reports, track down witnesses, and get additional statements that will support your case. They may send a professional photographer out to get additional photos of the area where the accident occurred. A personal injury lawyer can obtain security camera footage from businesses or residents as well as securely retain evidence to be sure it is available should the case go to trial. This may be important if you have evidence that you are afraid may be lost, damaged, or destroyed before the case proceeds to trial. Courts also have strict rules on how evidence must be obtained, stored, and documented, things that a personal injury attorney is well aware of and will adhere to during your case.
- Dealing with Insurance Companies
Anyone who has ever dealt with insurance companies knows how frustrating the process can be due to red tape and documentation requirements. Las Vegas injury attorneys work with insurance companies daily, so they are well-versed in the tactics used to reduce settlements or shift blame. The attorney can read the policy and determine exactly what is covered as well as the compensation you are entitled to receive. In addition, an attorney will protect your rights by keeping you from giving a statement without them present that could jeopardize your compensation.
- Demand Letters
After investigating the claim, your Las Vegas personal injury attorneys may send a demand letter to the insurance company. This letter will state the facts of the accident and explain the damages you are seeking for your injury. If there is no insurance company involved, the letter may be sent to the person who caused your injury. In some cases, a demand letter from an attorney is enough to let the person who caused your injury to realize you are seriously pursuing compensation, leading to a settlement of the case without the need for a trial.
- Prepare Court Documents
If the insurance company or other person refuses to offer a settlement that the Las Vegas personal injury attorneys feel is inadequate, they will prepare a legal complaint. The complaint, often called a pleading, outlines the legal argument the attorney plans to use regarding the plaintiff’s fault in your injury. It will also include information on the damages you are seeking. Once that document is served, the defendant usually has 20 days to respond. This document is often called an answer to the complaint. It is important to note that court documents must be filed in a timely manner. Missing a deadline by even one day could result in your case being dismissed without the court ever hearing it. For this reason, hiring Las Vegas injury attorneys can make the difference between your case being heard or dismissal because of a missed deadline or erroneous filing.
- Case Discovery
Once a pleading is filed, Las Vegas personal injury lawyers begin conducting discovery. This is the process of collecting evidence that can be used in court. The lawyer may send interrogatories to ask for information, or you may be required to submit to a deposition, a question and answer session that will include some of the information that will be used as part of the court testimony. Depositions can be conducted on the defendant, plaintiff, witnesses, experts, and anyone else with information on the case.
- Trial Representation
If, after the discovery, investigation, pleadings, and answers, the case has still not been settled, your Las Vegas personal injury lawyers will proceed with a court trial. This may be a trial before a judge or a jury. Your personal injury lawyer understands court customs and procedures which must be followed carefully to avoid dismissal of your case. An attorney will present your case to the judge or jury, question witnesses on both sides of the case, and bring experts to the courtroom who can confirm your claim regarding personal injury.
If you have been injured and you believe you have a personal injury case, contact the Las Vegas injury attorneys at the Schnitzer Law Firm. You can arrange for a no-obligation consultation by calling 702-960-4050, emailing TheSchnitzerLawFirm.com, or fill out the secure online form.