What Can A Personal Injury Attorney Do (That You Likely Cant)?
Personal Injury - January 16, 2020
If you are somebody you care about has been injured due to the careless or negligent actions of another person, you may need to consider seeking legal assistance. Despite what people you know say, personal injury cases can become very complicated. While it may be possible to handle a case on your own, the best way to secure maximum compensation for your injuries is to work with a knowledgeable and skilled attorney. What can a Chicago personal injury attorney do that you probably can’t?
1. Know What You Need to Prove in Court
Certain elements must be proven in a personal injury case. Testifying about your side of events or providing certain evidence you personally obtained may not be enough. In some cases, it may be necessary for your attorney to locate and use an expert witness to prove that the defendant owed you a duty of care, breached that duty, and caused your injuries. Your attorney will also work to gain harder to obtain evidence in your case, including video surveillance, safety records of a defendant, and more.
2. Negotiate a Fair Settlement
Most personal injury cases are settled out of court. Throughout the process, your personal injury attorney will be involved in settlement negotiations with the defendant. There are many factors to take into consideration when deciding whether or not to settle out of court, such as:
- your chances of winning at trial based on the evidence gathered
- verdicts and settlements from similar cases
- the scope of the defendant’s monetary resources and insurance limits
3. Ensure Deadlines Are Met
All jurisdictions have certain procedures in place for civil cases, including personal injury lawsuits. There will be various deadlines for every step of a lawsuit. One of the most important deadlines to consider is the statute of limitations for injury cases in Illinois, which is two years from the date the injury occurred. Failing to meet the proper deadlines in place could result in your case being dismissed by the court.
4. Prevent Removal to Another Court
There are times when certain large corporate defendants will attempt to remove their cases from state to federal court. They do this because federal courts are perceived to be friendlier to defendants and may be less likely to award large settlements to plaintiffs. Your attorney will know how to prevent this. They will also know when removing your case to another court could be a benefit.
5. Deal with the Other Side
Throughout all stages of a personal injury case, your attorney will be the one to handle communications with the defendant. During discovery, motions, and a potential trial, your attorney will be up against the defendant’s legal teams who understand what they are doing and who are working to ensure you get nothing for your case. Most individuals do not have the resources or experience necessary to do this without a skilled personal injury attorney by their side.
How Can You Afford an Attorney
Many people worry that they will not be able to afford an attorney for their personal injury case. The good news is that most personal injury attorneys will take cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that you would face no upfront or out-of-pocket cost related to your case and would only owe legal fees to your attorney after they secure a favorable settlement or verdict on your behalf. Horwitz Horwitz & Associates takes cases on contingency, contact our office today if you’d like to schedule a free consultation.