The Post-Crash Dilemma: Should You Call a Lawyer or Your Insurance Provider First?

should i call a lawyer after a car accident

Imagine this: You’re driving home on a beautiful Michigan evening when suddenly, a car swerves into your lane, causing a collision. Your mind starts racing as the dust settles, and you check for injuries. What do I do first? Who do I need to call? Should I call a lawyer after this car accident? My insurance company?

It may seem like a small detail now, but who you call first could impact you for months or years to come. It’s not a choice to take lightly, especially with Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws.

Let’s look at both the roles of insurance companies and auto-accident attorneys, to empower you with the knowledge and insight to protect your rights and interests following a car accident in Michigan.

The Role of Insurance Companies Post-Accident

Under Michigan’s no-fault system, your insurance company pays for certain losses, regardless of who caused the accident. This system is designed to speed up the payment of claims and reduce the need for lengthy and costly litigation. However, this doesn’t mean the process is straightforward.

Firstly, there’s the matter of filing a claim. This involves reporting the accident to your insurance provider and providing the necessary documentation. Depending on your specific policy, your insurance could cover medical expenses, wage loss benefits, replacement services, and damage to other people’s property, irrespective of fault.

Common Challenges with Insurance Companies

While the no-fault system has some advantages, it also presents unique challenges:

  1. Complex Policy Details: Understanding the specifics of your no-fault policy can be daunting. Each policy has different provisions and limitations, which can affect the coverage you receive.
  2. Timely Filing and Response: There are timelines for filing claims and receiving benefits. Delays in filing or incomplete documentation can result in denied claims or delayed payments.
  3. Disputes Over Benefits: Insurance companies may dispute the extent of your injuries or the necessity of certain treatments, leading to partial payments or outright denial of claims.
  4. Settlement Offers: Insurers often offer a quick settlement that might not fully cover your long-term needs, especially in cases of severe injury.
  5. Limitations of No-Fault Coverage: No-fault insurance doesn’t cover non-economic damages like pain and suffering unless certain thresholds are met. Understanding these nuances is essential.

Here’s Why You Should Call a Lawyer After a Car Accident

When involved in an auto accident in Michigan, your instinct might be to contact your insurance company immediately. However, there are compelling reasons to first consult with a personal injury attorney, particularly one experienced in Michigan’s unique auto accident laws.

The Benefits of Early Legal Consultation

  1. Expert Guidance on No-Fault Laws: Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws are complex. A Michigan personal injury attorney can help you understand these laws and how they apply to your specific case, ensuring you don’t inadvertently jeopardize your claim.
  2. Assessment of Your Case: An attorney can assess the full extent of your claim, including potential compensation for injuries, lost wages, and other damages you might not have considered.
  3. Dealing with Insurance Companies: Attorneys are skilled at navigating the tricks and tactics of insurance companies. They can handle communications on your behalf, ensuring you don’t say or do anything that could harm your claim.
  4. Maximizing Your Compensation: Attorneys can help negotiate a settlement that fully covers your immediate and long-term needs. This is especially important in cases of severe injury, where future medical expenses and life changes often happen. 
  5. Litigation Support: If your case goes to court, having an experienced attorney to represent you becomes essential, ensuring your rights are protected throughout the legal process.

How An Attorney Helps You Navigate Michigan’s No-Fault Auto Insurance System

Navigating the complexities of Michigan’s no-fault insurance system is overwhelming without legal guidance. An experienced attorney can interpret ambiguous policy language, file your claim accurately and on time, manage denials through proper appeals, negotiate fair settlements with insurers, and coordinate extensive benefits for severe injuries. 

With so many nuances around coverage, timelines, appeals, negotiations, and available compensation, having a lawyer who understands the specifics of no-fault laws is critical for protecting your rights and receiving the maximum benefits you deserve. 

An attorney’s expertise makes all the difference in successfully maneuvering through the claims process.

Making the Right Call

You may feel like you must report the accident to your insurance company immediately. However, you should first talk to a Michigan no-fault auto accident attorney. This protects your interests before you call your insurer. 

Talking to your insurance provider poses a risk of inadvertently saying something they can use to minimize your claim. Insurance adjusters will extract information that could limit their liability.

The legal process after an accident can be overwhelming, from reviewing your policy to handling claims and settlements. Having an experienced and thoughtful attorney on your side makes a difference. The bottom line? Call a lawyer before you call your insurance company after an accident in Michigan.

Call an Expert Michigan No-Fault Auto Accident Lawyer After a Car Accident

At Wigod & Falzon, we’re Michigan auto accident attorneys who advocate for car accident victims. Our expertise in Michigan law helps clients get the full compensation they deserve. We know the specifics that matter most after a local crash. 

We advocate for your rights, manage communications with insurance companies, and guide you every step of the way. Thus, allowing you to focus on what matters most – your recovery and well-being.

Additionally, we operate on a contingency fee structure, where the attorney’s fee and case expenses are covered by a percentage of the settlement/judgment. Simply put, no recovery = no fee.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident in Michigan, remember that the decision you make about whom to call first can significantly impact your legal and financial recovery. 

Contacting our team for a free consultation is a step toward ensuring your rights are protected and your needs are fully addressed. We are here to help you navigate this challenging time with expertise, compassion, and dedication.