In this twelve-part blog series, personal injury lawyers Bree Hankins and Adrienne Staley discuss important steps to follow after a motor vehicle accident and what you need to know about making a personal injury claim. Part 5 focuses on when and why you should consult a lawyer after you have been in an accident.
Part Five: When should I see a lawyer after I have been in an accident, and why do I need one?
You are able to speak to a lawyer anytime! We offer a free 30-minute consultation to clients who have been injured in a motor vehicle accident. However, not everyone needs a lawyer, it just depends on your particular circumstances. Feel free to call and ask us. We will be honest with you if you do not need a lawyer.
However, there are some circumstances where it is extremely important that you consult a lawyer. If any of the following applies to you, you should really consult a lawyer to find out whether you have a claim:
- When you are off work for more than 3 weeks;
- When ICBC has cut off your TTD benefits;
- When ICBC has stopped funding your treatments and you are still in pain or discomfort;
- When you are still experiencing pain or discomfort 6 months after the accident;
- When ICBC has determined fault for the accident and there is a question as to whether you were responsible for causing the accident; or
- When you have questions.
In addition, when your injuries are significant, and you have suffered a concussion, head injury, broken bone, or other severe injury you should consult a lawyer right away.
It is also very important to consult a lawyer prior to accepting a settlement from ICBC for your claim. You only get one chance to settle your claim. It is ICBC’s job to settle your claim as quickly as possible and for the least amount possible. ICBC’s goal is not to provide fair compensation, but to keep the costs of settlement low. The offer ICBC makes you might not include compensation for important items like future treatment or future wage loss.
If you consult a lawyer before you accept a settlement, you can make an informed decision about whether the amount offered is reasonable. As we offer a free consultation, you have nothing to lose by speaking to a lawyer about your case. You might regret it if you don’t.