Los Angeles County is home to at least 5.8 million registered motor vehicles. These vehicles cover over 92 million miles annually in Los Angeles alone. With so many vehicles driving so many miles, there are bound to be accidents. When you find yourself in the middle of one, it may be the beginning of a long chapter in your life, potentially filled with frustration, pain, financial worries, and physical incapabilities.
The good news is you do not have to simply accept what has happened to you and wait to see if the insurance companies will work something out. No matter how big or small your car accident is, consulting with a knowledgeable car accident attorney is always the wise choice. When you have an attorney on your side, you will likely receive more compensation for your damages than if you go it alone.
Should I hire a lawyer for a minor car accident in Los Angeles?
The problem with minor car accidents is that many turn out to be not so minor at all. You may leave the scene of the accident with a dented and scratched bumper, only to find out a few days later that the entire frame of your vehicle is damaged and now you need a new car. You may feel fine that evening, but discover in the coming days or weeks that you have a neck injury that will take months to recover from.
These so-called minor accidents can turn into big headaches. You need compensation for your medical bills, your property damage, and perhaps even lost wages at work. The insurance companies may give you the runaround and question your account of how the accident happened, while you merely just want to pay your bills, get back to work, and move on with your life.
No matter how small your accident may seem, you can ensure that your legal rights and financial interests are secure. Let the attorney decide if your case is worth pursuing. If you assume that your car accident was too minor, you may be leaving compensation on the table that you are rightfully entitled to.
Should I get a lawyer for a car accident that wasn't my fault?
If you were involved in a car accident in Los Angeles that was not your fault, you need to call a lawyer. When you hire a car accident attorney to represent you, you do not have to speak to the other party’s insurance company and run the risk of saying something detrimental to your claim. Your attorney can help determine the causes of your accident and who is to blame. Once those parties are identified, they can send a formal demand letter to pay for your damages. If they refuse to pay and your attorney is not able to reach a mutually agreed-upon settlement amount, you can pursue your case in court.
What is the average settlement for a car accident in Los Angeles?
This question is difficult to answer, as there are many variables to each case and different factors to consider. Like a court award, a settlement accounts for your damages in the accident, including:
- Medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Lost wages
- Loss of employment
Naturally, someone with a spinal cord injury who is no longer able to work or care for themselves will receive a significantly higher settlement than someone who broke their leg and couldn’t work for three months.
Other factors that may influence how much you receive for your claim might include:
- Any potential fault you had in the accident
- The amount of coverage provided under the defendant’s insurance policy
- The evidence in your case
According to 2017 research by Martindale-Nolo, the average claim value was $52,900. Compensation typically ranged from $3,000 to $75,000, with some plaintiffs receiving significantly more. Other statistics reveal that the average car accident settlement is between $14,000 and approximately $28,000, averaging out to approximately $21,000. In contrast, the average settlement for more severe crashes is about $31,000.
The best way to determine what your case might be worth is to speak to an accident lawyer as soon as possible after your accident.
What percentage does an accident lawyer get?
Most personal injury law firms work on a contingency fee basis. Under these terms, you pay nothing upfront to the accident lawyer. If you receive a settlement or court award for your claim, your attorney gets a percentage of that. Usually, they charge anywhere from 25 to 40 percent, depending on whether your case settles directly with the insurance company, requires litigation, or goes to trial. With a contingency fee, the attorney only gets paid if you receive compensation.
In a car accident? Get a free case consultation today
Whether your accident was a fender-bender on the way home from work or shut down the 405 during the morning commute, we are here to help. Reach out to us to find out what legal options you have after your accident and if you might be entitled to compensation for your damages. For a free legal consultation with a Los Angeles car accident attorney, contact Blair & Ramirez LLP at (213) 568-4000 or through our contact form.