Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
Auto accidents can be broken down into two portions – the personal injury claim (damage and injuries incurred by the people involved in the accident) and the property damage claim (damage sustained to the vehicles or "property" from the accident).
In most cases involving ONLY property damage, it is usually not necessary to get an attorney involved. Unless there are special circumstances, like the at-fault driver being DUI, there are few times when having an attorney handle the property damage will be beneficial (especially if the lawyer charges you for his or her services). The Joye Law Firm does not handle property damage-only cases. However, as a service to our injury clients, our legal team assists our auto accident clients with their property damage claim.
The personal injury portion of the claim is much different. This is where an attorney can really help. In fact, according to research by the Insurance Institute of America, on average, people represented by an attorney receive 3 ½ X more money than those who represent themselves, even after lawyers’ fees are paid. That is some strong evidence that an attorney can bring value to your claim.
That’s because an attorney knows the in’s and out’s of personal injury law. He or she knows what your losses, injuries and other damages cost and what you are owed. Plus, since most personal injury attorneys are paid on a "contingency fee" basis (meaning the lawyer doesn’t get paid unless he or she wins your case), your lawyer if financially motivated to do a good job. Now, not all lawyers are created equal. It is important to find out more about a perspective firm’s track record of success, recent trial wins, peer recognition awards and leadership positions before deciding if they are right for you.
How to Choose a Lawyer
Choosing a lawyer, like choosing a doctor or other professional, can be a very personal decision. Often you want to find the lawyer who "gets it," one who "clicks" with you. Personality and ease of communication is vital, but it is also important to get an idea about his or her background and whether they are experienced and capable of handling your case.
Check out our Frequently Asked Questions page for more tips on choosing a lawyer.