Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury Law
Our law firm puts decades of experience on your side
If you've been hurt in an accident, dealing with the potential legal implications can be overwhelming. You should focus on your recovery, not worry about your personal injury case. That's why our attorneys have prepared this list of frequently asked questions to help guide you through the process. Recht Law Offices has been helping injured people in Weirton and throughout the surrounding communities since 1952, and we're happy to put that experience to work for you.
- How do I know if I need a personal injury attorney?
- Does it matter when I contact you?
- What role does my doctor play in a personal injury claim?
- How do I need to document my injury?
- How much compensation can I collect?
- Are the details of my case confidential?
- How long will my case take to resolve?
These general questions and answers should give you an idea of how to proceed. For more information on your specific case, reach out to Recht Law for a free case evaluation. Call 1 (877) 321-7324 today.
How do I know if I need a personal injury attorney?
Broadly speaking, if you've been injured due to the negligent acts of a person, business or government entity, you need to call us. Accidents leading to a personal injury claim could include car crashes, slip-and-fall accidents on someone else's property, dog bites, workplace accidents and many others.
While it's theoretically possible to file a personal injury claim on your own, we can't recommend it. Missing a single deadline or filing a document incorrectly could affect your legal rights. You only have one chance to recover the compensation you need to provide for yourself and your family. Remember, the insurance companies are going to be represented by counsel. The best way to protect your legal rights is to have representation of your own.
Does it matter when I contact you?
Absolutely. You need to contact us as soon as possible after you are injured. If we start working on your case right away, we can interview witnesses while their memories are still fresh and collect evidence before it disappears. Moreover, we can deal with insurance companies on your behalf to make sure they can't use any of your statements against you.
The statute of limitations in West Virginia for most personal injury cases is two years, but there's no need to wait that long. Get our attorneys on your side right away to make sure all deadlines are met and protect your legal rights.
What role does my doctor play in a personal injury claim?
Your doctor's job is to protect your health. When you've been injured, your health should be your first priority. See a medical professional as soon as possible after you are injured and describe what happened in the accident. It's important to complete your medical treatment before accepting any settlement for your accident, as you need to know the full cost of your medical bills.
Seeing a doctor right away can help prove that your injuries were really sustained in an accident rather than due to a pre-existing condition. In addition, if you wait too long to seek treatment, an insurance company may use that delay against you.
How do I need to document my injury?
Take pictures of any visible injuries or property damage as well as the scene of the accident. In particular, document any visibly dangerous aspects of the accident scene, such as lack of signage or exposed hazards. Get contact information for any witnesses. Again, see a doctor right away and explain what happened. All of that documentation will play a vital role in your personal injury claim.
You also need to keep a "paper trail" of costs related to your injury or illness. That may include lost wages, time away from work, repairs to damaged property and many other expenses.
Documentation is one of many reasons why you need us on your side as soon as possible. When you retain Recht Law, we'll conduct our own investigation of the accident scene and collect the documentation needed to build a strong case.
How much compensation can I collect?
That depends on the extent of your injuries and the nature of your case. A personal injury claim can include compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, emotional distress, property damage, lost future earnings and other losses. If the person or business that hurt you acted especially egregiously, a court may even decide to award punitive damages.
Insurance companies will often deliberately ignore certain losses when offering a settlement in order to limit their own costs. That's why you need an experienced attorney from Recht Law to review your case. In many cases, we can find additional sources of compensation and help you recover much more than the insurance company's initial "low-ball" offer.
Are the details of my case confidential?
The law protects attorney-client communications so that a client is assured of speaking freely with complete confidentiality. No details of your case will ever be divulged by our attorneys or office without your specific written permission. We are available for clients when they need us, and there is no risk of any aspect of your case becoming public without your consent.
How long will my case take to resolve?
Every case is unique. While some are handled quickly, many can take months or even years to resolve. The time it takes to complete a personal injury claim depends on the facts of the case, the willingness of the parties involved to negotiate and the vagaries of the court system.
We understand that you want to resolve your case as quickly as possible. Insurance companies know that too, though. They may offer a "low-ball" settlement soon after the accident to get you to settle for less than you need. We encourage you to take the time to complete your medical treatment and consult with an experienced attorney from our firm prior to accepting a settlement. It's well worth the wait to get an amount that actually pays for the full extent of your loss.