When a person is involved in accident, they may be left confused about what happens next. According to tort principles a person who suffers an injury that is caused by the negligence of another person is entitled to compensation for damages as a result of the party’s negligence. It is important to understand the process of personal injury cases to help victims determine whether or not they want to settle the case or pursue a lawsuit. This article will discuss the personal injury process so as to determine whether to settle or sue the responsible party for your injuries.
Firstly, it is usually advisable to retain the services of a car accident attorney in Alaska as early in the process as possible. This can help the victim get to know fully what their legal rights are. It also helps prevent the victim from making any mistakes that may adversely affect their claim. Such as making statements to the defendant that may later be used against them. Personal injury lawyers are skilled at handling personal injury claims including motor vehicle accidents, slip and fall accidents, airplane accidents, defective product cases and other types of personal injury claims.
In many instances the victim must file a claim against the defendant’s insurance company. This may be the defendant’s automotive insurance policy if the defendant caused a car accident that injured the victim or it could be homeowner’s insurance if an accident happened concerning premises liability. An attorney helps with this process and may help the victim prepare a statement with regards to the accident. Additionally, the attorney will advise the victim not to make a recorded statement or at least not to make one without the attorney present.
After the claim is filed the insurance company will conduct an investigation. Such an investigation determines the underlying cause of the accident, which party is responsible for the accident or if both parties are responsible to some extent. At the same time, the victim’s personal injury attorney may be working on their own investigation and compiling evidence to help strengthen and substantiate the victim’s claims. This includes taking pictures of the accident scene and documenting the victim’s injuries.
At some point they may be need for negotiation; when this occurs the victim’s personal injury lawyer negotiates with the defendant or his or her insurance company.
The personal injury attorney handles correspondence between the victim and the defendant. This is done by way of the attorney sending a demand letter stating the reasons why the accident victim is entitled to compensation. This letter may specify the circumstances of the accident and provide details about the victim’s injuries. It may also specify a particular amount of damages that the victim is requesting.
Thereafter the insurance company may respond to the demand letter by making a counter offer. This offer may be further negotiated or rejected. If accepted then the case is settled. However, if the negotiations do not resolve the case the victim may decide to file a lawsuit. This process commences litigation. The plaintiff lawyer files a complaint and the defendant has to respond to this.