When it comes to any type of court case, individuals are allowed to represent themselves. However, just because they are allowed to do this does not mean that they should. You may be thinking that you do not want to spend money on a personal injury attorney when you already have growing medical bills, no income coming in, and are struggling to keep up with your daily expenses.
Keep these four important points in mind when considering whether you should represent yourself in your own personal injury case.
1. The legal system is complex and can become difficult to navigate very quickly
When the legal system becomes difficult to navigate, a Charlotte personal injury attorney is there to assist you and provide legal advice on what you should do. Sometimes, you may not even know about the difficulties that have come up because your attorney will handle them on their own.
However, if you decide to represent yourself, the courts will expect you to handle all legal duties, even the challenges that arise. You will not have anyone to lean on, address concerns, or even ask questions when you do not understand something. Instead, you will be expected to know the rules regarding the legal process and evidence as well as prepare a strong argument against the defendant. In addition, you will also need to file all the paperwork by yourself and meet every single deadline. If you fail to do this, there is a good chance that your case will be thrown out.
Keep in mind that legal procedures are complicated, no matter how much knowledge you have about the legal system. Therefore, hiring a Charlotte personal injury attorney is in your best interest, especially when it comes to obtaining a fair amount of compensation to cover your losses. The reasons for this are because experienced lawyers stand up to people and companies for a living, have spent a lot of time helping clients through similar legal matters, and are updated and aware of the laws surrounding injury cases.
2. Legal expenses will immediately accumulate
Individuals who work with personal injury attorneys are usually put on a contingency plan, meaning that the law firm covers the expenses and does not charge a fee until they win the client’s case. Therefore, there are usually no costs upfront to reach out and begin working with a lawyer.
However, if you choose to represent yourself, the legal expenses will start accumulating from the moment your personal injury case begins. Therefore, you will be required to pay your own legal expenses from beginning to end. These expenses may include filing fees, court costs, investigatory costs, depositions, testimony costs, and more.
3. You may receive less compensation for your losses
When accidents and injuries occur, the defendant’s legal team and insurance companies will do everything they can to save money by encouraging you to settle for a lesser amount than you deserve. Without the proper knowledge or assistance from an attorney, you may believe that the compensation they are offering you is a good amount and sign away your rights. This is understandable because most people are not aware of the full value of their claim without the help and guidance of a personal injury lawyer.
A Charlotte personal injury lawyer knows how to negotiate with insurance companies and will handle all forms of communication with them. The reason they do this is because they have been fully trained in knowing how to avoid the tactics insurance companies use to get people to settle for a lower value. Insurance companies are also known to trick people into making statements or signing documents that can be used against them.
However, if you choose to work with a personal injury lawyer, they will determine the full worth of your claim and put up a good fight to obtain that amount.
4. It can also become complicated to reach a resolution
When you pursue a personal injury claim, you will quickly learn that the resolution process can become extremely complicated. The reason for this is because insurance companies may not back down, and you may run into traps and never-ending mazes with them.
Most people who have been injured are already stressed and frustrated with the recovery process, so adding a court case on top of that can become very overwhelming. Therefore, it is recommended to let an experienced and skilled attorney handle all the details and challenges of your case, while you focus on healing.
Overall, representing yourself is not recommended for a personal injury case
Many of our clients have thought about self-representation before coming to us. The reason most of them think about this is not only financial, but because they know that civil cases do not require legal representation like criminal cases do. However, there are many elements of a personal injury case that you may not be prepared for or know what to do when you are faced with them. The worst part is that your defendant’s legal team, as well as their insurance companies, will be rooting for your failure.
With that being said, even if you think you can successfully represent yourself, it is highly advisable that you seek the help of an experienced lawyer. They will not only fight for your right to fair compensation, but they will also do everything in their power to ensure that justice is served.
If you have recently been injured due to someone else’s negligence, Price, Petho & Associates will be glad to help you file a personal injury claim. We have offices in Charlotte, Rockingham, and Rutherfordton, making it convenient for all North Carolinians to get the legal assistance they need. Call our office or submit our contact form to schedule a free consultation with a member of our team today.
Attorney Doug Petho is the owner and founder of Price, Petho & Associates. His primary focus is the litigation of plaintiff’s personal injury suits, and he has successfully tried hundreds of cases to jury verdict involving car accidents, trucking accidents, pedestrian accidents, slip and fall accidents, and work-related accidents. Contact his office in Charlotte today.