Los Angeles car accidents come in different contexts, severities, and circumstances. The necessity of hiring a car accident lawyer depends on three main things:
- The time left to file for a car accident settlement. (Read: How Long Do I Have to File A Lawsuit After A Car Accident?)
- The severity of the damages and car accident injuries sustained
- The capacity of car accident victims to pay for their own medical bills or to handle their own car accident claim.
Right off the bat, we’d say that a car accident lawyer isn’t needed in every scenario. Now the real question is, “How do you know when you need one?”
That being said, most car accident lawyers offer free, no-strings-attached consultations. This means there’s zero risk to making a phone call and getting your case assessed for free.
Believe it or not, most law firms will be upfront with you if your car accident case can has high chances of winning or if it makes more sense to handle the case on your own.
You don’t need a car accident lawyer if:
- There were no injured accident victims.
- There is no property damage.
- You’re certain that the insurance company is offering you fair financial compensation.
- You are 100% certain that you’ve calculated all the present and future expenses of your accident.
- You are knowledgeable about car accident laws in your area. Including paperwork processes, deadlines, offices, etc.
- You are confident that you can recover compensation for yourself without the help of a personal injury attorney.
- You have everything you need to go head-to-head with the at-fault party’s auto insurance company and their personal injury lawyer.
J&M TIP: Accepted offers from insurance companies may be final. Especially if you signed a document saying so. This means that you need to be 100% sure that their offer will cover all present and future medical expenses. Consider lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, etc. (Read: How Does A Car Accident Settlement Work?)
What damages can I be compensated for?
In this video, our Senior Trial Attorney and ABOTA member, Shane Hapuarachy will explain the types of damages you can be compensated for in a car accident or any personal injury case.
An auto accident lawyer can definitely help if:
- You want a higher and fair settlement (Read: Does Hiring A Car Accident Lawyer Help Get Higher Settlements?)
- You sustained significant injuries or were permanently disabled because of the car accident.
- Your car is badly damaged and you need assistance fast.
- A death resulted from the car accident.
- Your entire life after the car accident is permanently altered.
- You think multiple parties are liable for the car accident.
- There were several victims in the accident.
- You need to focus on healing and recovery.
TIP: With so many car accident lawyers in California, choosing who to trust might be a daunting task. How do you choose the best car accident attorney? Since consultations are free, we suggest that you try to call several law firms.
You can also check their websites and social media accounts to see if they have a winning track record and if they have experience handling cases like yours. Get to know the auto accident attorneys and see if they are the kind of people you’d like to work with.
Disadvantages of Settling a car accident settlement without a lawyer:
- Being unfamiliar with the process, you might lose track of time and miss the deadline for filing a car accident claim.
- Signing documents with no legal guidance and enough legal experience can put you at risk of jeopardizing your rights
- You lack the resources and connections to gather strong evidence. Hence, liability is more difficult to prove.
- Insurance companies can lowball your offer.
- Prolong or aggravated injuries
- You Lose more time at work
Jacoby & Meyers Tip: Should you still decide to process a claim on your own, make sure you note of the time, resources, experience and legwork that is required to actually get the settlement you deserve. Time is of the essence when filing a claim.
Solicit the help of friends and family especially if you have injuries that you still need to recover from. Insurance adjusters or at-fault parties’ lawyers can flip scenarios against you and say that the severity of your injuries are due to your own negligence or was aggravated “post” accident.
Document everything that you can. And truly, if you feel that your case is too complex, our experienced Los Angeles auto accident lawyers offer FREE CONSULTATION, 100% No strings attached. Not a single dime out of your pocket.
What does a car accident lawyer do?
If, from the list above, you feel like your case might benefit from a car accident lawyer, it pays to know exactly what they should do for you. Here’s what auto accident attorneys usually do for you:
- Processes all paper works for you
- Makes sure you get the most settlement
- Educates and guides you through the legal process
- Represent you in court
- Gather evidence that might be hard to find
- Ensure you are compensated for all the damages
- Enlist medical professionals and other experts to create a stronger case
Benefits of hiring a car accident lawyer in California:
- Ultimately, make sure that you get the highest possible settlement you can get.
- Coordinate and negotiate with insurance companies in order to get the maximum settlement without needing to go to court. This way, you save on court fees and get your settlement in a shorter amount of time (Read: how long does it take)
- Be taken seriously by the at-fault party and the insurer. Insurance adjusters will be more cautious and polite in their interactions with you if you are working with a reputable company.
- Collect all evidence needed to ensure you have a strong case.
- Connect with experts who can give testimonies to add up to the strength of your case. Especially for serious injuries that have more than physical costs at the present.
- Calculate future damages and non-economic damages so you get the rightful amount that will help you even in the future.
- Lawyers will help you understand your rights and guide you through all the processes. This way, you won’t miss any deadlines or documents that might jeopardize your case.
- Negotiate a fair settlement if the insurance party gives you a lowball offer.
- Represent you in court should the need arise.
How much do car accident lawyers really charge?
Most Los Angeles and California car accident lawyers charge between 33.3% – 40% of your total settlement. This is why it’s important that you choose a firm that has a track record of winning settlements and has the experience of getting more than what was initially offered.
If you just got involved in an accident and are suffering from injuries, you probably missed work or even have your car totaled and unusable. In short, you may not have the resources to seek compensation or pay a lawyer upfront.
We know this well at Jacoby & Meyers that’s why we work purely on a contingency fee basis.
Do I Need to Pay Upfront?
The contingency basis fee structure means you won’t need to shell out a dime until we win your case. No fees until we win. This also means that if your case does not go to trial and you don’t recover anything, you also don’t pay anything at all. Which gives you all the more reason to trust your lawyer. It is also in their best interest to win your case and get you the highest settlement possible. If you think about it, they will not spend time and advance money on a case they are not confident in winning in the first place.
The Jacoby & Meyers Difference: Very few people come out unscathed from a car accident. We know this at J&M that’s why we assist our clients even with their medical needs. Unlike other law firms, we help you get the medical assistance you need. This way, you can focus on recovery while we focus on winning your case.
Can I fire my car accident lawyer?
Yes, you can. After some time has passed, you might feel that you are not aligned with your lawyer or that your lawyer isn’t really on your side. This is completely normal. You might not have the same communication style or you simply didn’t feel like you are a priority.
This is why it’s important to get to know your lawyers before signing with them.
J&M Tip: Get to know your lawyers by visiting their social media channels and even their LinkedIn accounts. Do they have the track record to win cases like yours? What advocacies are they involved in? What is their company culture like?
Though it’s important to take your time in choosing a law firm, be wary of the time limitations as well. Reading their blogs, checking social media posts and even reading reviews can help you gauge if this is the right firm for you.
How do you choose the best car accident lawyer?
Choosing your car accident attorney can mean the difference between getting back on your feet or suffering from the consequences your entire life. Though you can fire your car accident attorney and choose another one, time is of the essence in personal injury cases, so you must try to make the right choice from the beginning.
Here are things to consider when you are choosing the best car accident lawyer for your case:
- Winning Track Record
- Success in Business
- The roster of lawyers and team members
- Public Image
- Awards and Acknowledgements
- Communication and Rapport
J&M TIP: Google Reviews are an excellent way to gauge a law firm. However, note that we are not looking for a PERFECT 5-STAR profile. As in all businesses, not all reviews will be positive. This is actually a good thing. Almost perfect 5-star reviews with no complaints at all might be a sign of fake or bought reviews.
As no business is ever perfect, especially in dealing with cases where multiple institutions (timelines and bureaucracies are involved), complaints are always bound to happen. What you should look for instead, is how a company responds to these negative reviews.
Do they acknowledge them? Are they proactive? Do they respond with a real intention to solve the problem? If there are negative reviews, you can be sure that it’s an authentic profile. You want to see how a firm handles curveballs. You want to see dedication, solutions and attention.
By now you might have realized that the real question isn’t whether or not you need a car accident lawyer. The real question is, how badly do you want to win?
The Jacoby & Meyers Difference
We can always say that we have the best car accident lawyers in Los Angeles and the whole of California. Our awards and billions of settlements won can attest to that. But that’s what all car accident lawyers in California would tell you. So instead of saying we are the best, let us show you how we make a difference:
Full-suite, beginning to end.
Being in this field for 50+ years, we know there’s a long and rocky way to a “settlement”. A client coming out of a car accident will have needs and pains that need immediate attention even before a settlement is received. This is why we offer a full-suite service for all our clients.
Doctors, field expert resources, car rentals, x-rays, MRIs – if you get into an accident, how will you pay for all these? At Jacoby & Meyers, we take care of our clients from the day of the accident up to the day they sign their settlement checks. Full-service, from beginning to end.
Client empowerment is at the core of Jacoby & Meyers so we developed materials that can help you understand your personal injury claim every step of the way. Lawyers and team members will guide you through complex legal processes so you can make educated decisions along the way.
A Team of Integrity
Unlike other law firms, Jacoby & Meyers has TEAMS to handle your case. This means that an expert handles every stage. This also means that your case will move as fast as it possibly can. Though all cases have different timelines, you can rest assured that a team is focusing on your case every single day.
Our goal is for you to get the maximum compensation you can get, and we will exhaust all legal options to do so. However, we will never compromise our values of honesty, fairness, and transparency. Our teams are all trained to give full disclosure of all and any pertinent information that may affect the proceedings of a case. This all ties back to how we create a healthy and empowered relationship with our clients at the firm.
We only hire the best of the best.
Our Human Resources team is always looking for great talent that fits our culture of client obsession at the firm.
HUMBLE. HUNGRY. SMART.
These are the words we live by at the firm. Servants by heart and hardworking to our core, our team members are not just experts but emphatic hard workers who go above and beyond to make sure our clients get the support they need.
It also pays to know that we treat our team members with the same respect, investment, and attention as we do our clients. For we are well aware that satisfied employees also mean better and more efficient service for our clients.
One way we invest in our team is through continuous learning. We have an institutionalized Personal Injury Academy for all team members, from legal assistants up to our social media managers. We have customer service training, a learning content library, Leadership Development Programs and even a Litigation Trial Academy; all in the name of bettering ourselves so we can be of better service to our clients.
(Read more about our people here: https://www.jacobyandmeyers.com/careers/)
Decorated Experts, Thought Leaders
Aside from millions of settlements won in court, our litigation team is also recognized and respected as thought leaders in the field of personal injury in the whole of California and even in other states.
If you look through our case studies, you will see that most of our big cases involve serious injuries. Those that involve life-altering disabilities, life-long consequences, pain and suffering and, sadly, even death.
These types of accidents and consequences are difficult, if not impossible, to put a price tag on. That’s why we only have experienced and serious lawyers on our team. Litigators that are able to get 10x what was originally offered – that’s the Jacoby & Meyers trademark.
Justice for you Since 1972
Let’s face it. Personal Injury law firms are often painted as ambulance chasers by the media and popular culture, but is this what we really do?
Going back to the history of Jacoby & Meyers, we were the first firm to make law services affordable and accessible to the regular Joe.
In the 1970s when legal services were only available to those who had connections and money, it was a revolution for our founders to create more content, commercials, and educational materials that made justice accessible for all. Why? Because we believe everyone deserves justice. This core belief is what fuels everything we do.
Openness and Communication
Here at Jacoby & Meyers, we put a prime on learning and growth. Not just for our team members but for our overall processes as well. We take client feedback very seriously and are proactive in implementing system improvements to improve our customers’ experiences.
Our team also has a horizontal approach where all team members can openly suggest projects and ideas they think can improve our overall client experience. We also do surveys with our clients and are constantly on the lookout for ways to improve our service.
All these things in the name of client obsession. Are we making our clients’ lives better? Are we there when they need us? Are we making it easy for them to recover?
Day in and day out, our main goal is to put their lives back together and make sure they get back up on their feet as quickly as possible. This goes back to why our clients’ get almost 10x the original offer of insurance companies. This goes back to why all our teams make sure each client gets the compensation they NEED and deserve.
Hiring a California Auto Accident Lawyer: What’s the Process Like?
Below is a summary of the steps a typical client goes through during their car accident lawsuit case in California:
STEP 1: INTAKE
- We gather all documents, photos, and information needed to start your case.
STEP 2: TREATMENT
- Your Case Manager will help you get to the doctor, face the insurance company, and if you were in a car accident, help get your car fixed.
STEP 3: MEDICAL RECORDS
- You’re done treating! A Medical Specialist will assist you in obtaining and reviewing all medical bills and records.
STEP 4: DEMANDS
- We put all your bills, records, and other documents in a demand packet and send it to the insurance company. If they act reasonably, we negotiate a settlement. If not, we must file paperwork in court and begin litigation.
STEP 5: LIENS NEGOTIATION
- You’ve settled your case! Once the demands or litigation process leads to a resolution, we negotiate all of your medical bills and give you a check.
Other Frequently Asked Questions:
- What should I do at the scene of a car accident?
- What happens if the at-fault party does not have insurance?
- Who is at-fault in a T-bone car accident?
- Who can be sued in a car accident case?
- Who is at-fault in a multi-vehicle accident?
- What happens if I feel the pain AFTER my car accident?
- How long does settlement negotiation take?
- Is hit-and-run a felony in California?
Read more of our FAQ’s here.
Get a Free Consultation With a Los Angeles Car Accident Lawyer
This may be your first car accident or personal injury lawsuit, but our California car accident lawyers have helped thousands of clients just like you. You can be confident that you are in capable hands when you choose Jacoby & Meyers to represent you.
Your no-obligation consultation will be confidential and free of charge. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by speaking to one of our experienced attorneys.
Call or text 866-559-7223 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form