When to Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
When Should You File a Personal Injury Claim?
The sooner you file your personal injury claim, the better your chances of obtaining a fair settlement. In many cases, a personal injury claim may depend heavily on witnesses. Unfortunately, witnesses move away, pass away, or their memory of the details of the accident fade. Further, because the Louisiana statute of limitations is very short, the sooner your claim is filed, the better. It is important that you contact an experienced personal injury attorney soon after your accident in order to set the wheels of justice in motion.
What are the Louisiana Statutes of Limitations and How Do They Affect Your Claim?
Statutes of limitations are the time limits set by each individual state regarding how long you have to file a claim after being injured by a negligent party. Most states allow anywhere from two to five years for a personal injury claim to be filed. Some states differentiate between a “regular” personal injury claim and a medical malpractice claim. The state of Louisiana allows only one year from the time of the injury for a personal injury claim or medical malpractice claim to be filed. Medical malpractice is a bit different in that the statutes state a medical malpractice claim must be filed within one year of the negligence or omission that led to the injury or within one year of when the injury or malpractice was discovered or should have been discovered.
What is the Process for Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney?
While you could look online to find a Louisiana personal injury attorney, many people still depend heavily on referrals from friends, co-workers, or family members. Once you have several referrals, meetings are set up with each potential personal injury attorney. You will want an attorney who is very experienced in cases similar to yours, as well as one you feel comfortable with. You might want to ask whether you will speak directly to the attorney throughout your case, or you will speak to a secretary or paralegal. It is also important to discuss fees, as well as how the attorney will communicate with you. You will give a brief synopsis of your claim to each attorney, getting their thoughts on the viability of the claim as well as how it would proceed. Once you make your choice of a personal injury attorney, you will sign a representation agreement, and your claim will begin.
Do You Really Need a Personal Injury Attorney for Your Claim?
If you have a minor personal injury claim, you have virtually no injuries or only minor injuries, no major medical expenses, and you were not off work for longer than a couple of days, you might not need a personal injury attorney. For such a minor claim, the insurance company would likely write you a check with little discussion because it is such a small amount. For any other personal injury claims, you almost certainly could benefit from having an experienced personal injury attorney in your corner.
Insurance companies are much more likely to offer you a fair settlement when you are legally represented. Your personal injury attorney knows all the “players” involved in your claim and knows what approach to use on your behalf. The personal injury attorneys at Hoffoss Devall will work hard on your behalf to ensure you receive an equitable settlement. We are highly skilled negotiators and, when necessary, aggressive litigators. We will fight for your rights and for a settlement that will fully cover your medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Contact an experienced Hoffoss Devall personal injury attorney today for highly qualified representation following your accident with injuries.