You are driving home after a long day of work, and someone rear-ends you at a red light.
Luckily, the damage to your vehicle is minor. Your car isn’t totaled, and it drives just like it did before.
And for the moment, you feel fine.
Soon after the accident, you start to notice some pain in your neck. However, it doesn’t seem serious.
In this accident, there is no question that the other driver was at fault. They even admit it to law enforcement.
Based on the circumstances of this accident, do you really need to contact a car accident attorney?
Even in accidents like this, yes, you should.
It never hurts to explore your legal rights any time you’re in a situation where you file a claim or seeking compensation.
Speaking with a car accident lawyer in Atlanta will also help if you underestimated your injuries.
A typical car accident like whiplash can produce more pain, migraines, and chronic issues, hours, or days after your accident, resulting in many medical expenses and even missed wages.
There is no harm in meeting with an attorney, especially because most accident attorneys offer a free consultation.
During your free consultation, you can discuss your car accident and your rights. From there, they’ll tell you if your case needs an attorney.
In the article below, we will discuss why you should contact an attorney after even a minor car accident.
What To Do After a Minor Car Accident
Regardless of who’s at fault, or how minor the car accident is, there are specific steps you should take if you’re involved in any car accident.
We’ll discuss some of those steps below, so you’re prepared if you end up in a minor accident.
Step #1 Do You Need Medical Attention?
After making sure you’re out of the way of traffic, you need to be sure that no one in your car needs emergency medical attention.
Since this is a minor accident, hopefully, you and your passengers are all fine.
Also, be sure that no one in the other vehicle needs medical attention, as well.
If anyone is severely injured, dial 911 right away.
Step #2 Make a Police Report
You will need to call the police after the accident to make an official report.
When speaking to the officer, never admit even the slightest bit of fault for the car accident.
This can be held against you later when you are trying to receive compensation.
Step #3 Exchange Information
After filing a police report, you should still exchange information with the other driver.
Be sure to get their name, phone number, and car insurance information, including their policy number.
If you can, take photos of the damage to both cars.
Step #4 Speak to a Lawyer
As soon as the accident is reported, insurance companies will try to protect themselves so they can pay as little as possible if anything at all.
You should also keep in mind that there is a statute of limitations for car accidents that resulted in injuries.
The statute of limitations will vary from state to state. However, in most states, like Georgia, the statute of limitations is two years.
When Should You Hire an Attorney?
Sometimes, a case doesn’t need the help of an attorney.
Other times it might not seem like an attorney is needed when they are.
There is no harm in speaking with an attorney, especially one who offers free consultations.
The sooner you consult with an attorney, the better.
Some telltale signs you need an attorney are:
Insurance Company Wants To Settle for Less Than You Need
If the insurance company from the at-fault driver has offered a settlement that doesn’t cover all of your damages, you need to speak with an attorney right away.
If you are negotiating for yourself, insurance companies will assume that you do not know how much compensation you are entitled to.
However, the moment an attorney takes over, you may notice that the offered settlement goes up.
There Is a Dispute about Liability
In some accidents, the at-fault party will be obvious.
In others, it might not be so straightforward. When this happens, you need an attorney.
Do not rely on a police report or witness statements alone.
Insurance companies will try to assign some of the faults to you in order to lower how much compensation they owe.
Your attorney will fight against this tactic.
The Injuries Became Serious
Sometimes you will feel fine at the scene, but you wake up a little off the next day.
After a few more days pass, you start suffering severe migraines, mood swings, and chronic pain.
You see a doctor and are diagnosed with nerve damage.
You just went from an incident that was nothing to one that takes you out of work, requires surgery, and leaves your bills unpaid.
Your attorney will seek compensation for these costs allowing you to focus on your recovery, and not on fighting with an insurance company.
Do you need a car accident attorney, but are not sure what to look for? Read our blog post, “How Do I Find a Good Car Accident Attorney?”
Contact The Angell Law Firm Today
Whether you have experienced a car crash, motorcycle accident, or truck accident in Atlanta, it is in your best interest to consult with an attorney no matter how minor the accident seems.
The attorneys at the Angell Law Firm can meet with you for free and discuss your rights and options.
To schedule your free consultation, call (770) 217-4954.
Bryce is considered a highly esteemed trial lawyer and a passionate client advocate amongst his peers in the Atlanta legal community. Never afraid to go the extra mile for his clients, Bryce Angell works tirelessly to ensure that each client’s personal injury case gets the attention that it deserves.