If you’ve been involved in a car accident, it’s crucial to understand how the claim process works. Here’s a breakdown of the steps involved and the importance of working with a car accident attorney to protect your rights and obtain fair compensation.
Initiating the Claim Process
When pursuing a car accident claim, the first step is to initiate a claim with the negligent driver’s insurance company. However, negotiating with insurance companies can be challenging, as their priority is often their own profits rather than the well-being of accident victims. To ensure you receive the full and fair damages you deserve, it is highly recommended to work with a skilled Washington car accident attorney who can negotiate on your behalf.
The Settlement Process
Once you’ve engaged a car accident lawyer, the process becomes more straightforward. Your attorney will handle the legal aspects of your claim while you focus on your recovery. Here’s how a lawyer can assist you during the settlement process:
- Investigating the Facts: Your lawyer will thoroughly investigate the details of your accident, including how it occurred. They will gather evidence such as photographs, accident reports, and witness statements to strengthen your case.
- Obtaining Medical Records and Opinions: Your attorney will gather your medical records, documents, and expert opinions regarding your injuries. This information helps build a comprehensive understanding of your damages and their impact on your life.
- Monitoring Legal Changes: Laws can change over time, and your attorney will stay updated on any legal developments that may affect your case. This ensures that your claim is handled with the most relevant and up-to-date legal strategies.
- Negotiating with Insurers: Your lawyer will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to pursue a fair settlement. They will advocate for your best interests and work to secure the compensation you deserve.
After Accepting a Settlement Offer
If you accept a settlement offer from the insurance company, several steps will follow:
- Signing Settlement Documents: The insurance company will provide settlement documents for you to sign, finalizing the agreement.
- Trust Account Process: The settlement check from the insurance company will typically be held in a trust account for around ten days, as recommended by the Washington State Bar Association.
- Verifying Outstanding Invoices or Liens: Your attorney will contact healthcare providers to ensure any outstanding invoices or liens are properly addressed and reimbursed.
- Final Statement and Settlement Check: You will receive a final statement outlining all costs, fees, and reimbursements. The settlement check will then be issued to you.
The Statute of Limitations
It’s important to note the statute of limitations, which sets a time limit for filing your claim. In Washington, you must file your car accident claim within three years from the date of the crash. Time is of the essence, so it’s crucial to consult a car accident lawyer promptly to avoid losing your right to seek compensation.
Consult with Our Washington Car Accident Lawyers
At Alliance Law Group, our experienced Washington car accident lawyers are here to guide you through the claims process. We have a proven track record of helping clients secure the maximum compensation they deserve. Schedule a consultation today by calling 253-300-2055 or contacting us online.