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When Should I Call a Lawyer After a Car Accident in Iowa?

Posted By Tim Semelroth - 09.25.20

If you have been seriously injured in an Iowa car crash, it’s understandable that your first instinct is not to immediately call an attorney. You likely have more important things on your mind, like getting medical attention for your injuries.  There should come a time, however, when you must decide whether contacting an attorney would be in your best interest.

Not All Iowa Car Accident Claims Need an Attorney

The first thing you should know is not all car accident victims need a lawyer’s help to settle their case. If you suffered no injuries, or your injuries were minor, it may not make financial sense to hire a lawyer.  Most car accident victims do not have the money to pay an attorney by the hour.  Therefore, most Iowa car accident lawyers agree to work on contingency – that means that the lawyer’s fee is a percentage of the settlement or jury verdict the lawyer gets for the client.

The size of a car accident settlement or verdict is related to how seriously a person was injured and what they lost.  If a car accident victim suffered no injuries or only minor injuries, that person is not typically entitled to a settlement amount that is big enough to pay the attorney’s contingent fee, pay all accident-related expenses and still have money left to go in the victim’s pocket.

Do You Need an Iowa Lawyer For Your Car Crash Case?

There are a few criteria we use at our law firm to determine whether someone injured in a car accident could benefit from our help.

  1. Your vehicle has been totaled or seriously damaged. Although vehicle design has improved throughout the years, serious car accidents normally mean your vehicle has been badly damaged. This damage can help convince an auto insurance company or a jury that you were injured in the crash.

On the flip side, if your vehicle has little to no damage due to the crash, it can be much more difficult to prove that you were seriously hurt.

  1. You have at least $5,000 in medical bills or require ongoing medical treatment for your injuries. If a car accident causes at least $5,000 in medical bills, it’s likely that we can get enough money in a settlement or jury trial to justify our fee. If you do not have at least this amount in medical bills, it is hard for us to say you will receive a financial benefit from hiring us.

If your injuries require months of physical therapy visits or doctors’ appointments, it’s likely your medical bills will quickly reach this $5,000 benchmark.

  1. Your injuries required you to take more than two weeks off work. If you had to take more than two weeks off work because of your injuries, it’s likely you were seriously hurt. An attorney can negotiate with the insurance company for compensation for this lost time from work.

Even if you think that you may not need an attorney, it’s never a bad idea to reach out to an experienced Iowa car accident lawyer for an initial consultation. Initial consultations are usually free, and the attorney will discuss with you whether or not it makes sense for you to hire a lawyer.

If you would like a free, no-obligation case evaluation with one of our knowledgeable Iowa car crash lawyers, call RSH Legal today at 1-800-433-0283.

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