What Do Car Accident Lawyers Do?

What Do Car Accident Lawyers Do?

Car accident lawyers seek fair compensation for their clients’ accident-related injuries and damages, but the process can’t be captured in a single sentence. Completing an insurance claim or lawsuit requires gathering evidence, documenting damages, calculating a fair settlement value, and negotiating a settlement. In relatively rare cases, a lawyer must also complete a trial.

Bridgeport Car accident attorneys also protect their clients. An insurance company cannot convince an accident victim to accept an unfair settlement if the insurer is dealing with the accident victim’s attorney.

Schedule a Free Initial Consultation Today!

Exactly What Do Car Accident Lawyers Do for Their Clients?

Attorneys create a personalized strategy for each car accident victim they represent. You will have unique needs and may even have special requests for your lawyer. However, there are standard services that car accident lawyers provide every client, including:

What Do Car Accident Lawyers Do

Attorneys must prove how the car accident has negatively affected their client, and can do so with:

  • MRIs, CT scans, X-rays, and other medical images showing the injuries
  • Medical bills for all accident-related services (including medications and medical equipment)
  • Doctors’ testimony about the accident victim’s damages
  • Economists’ testimony (and income statements) proving the professional cost of the accident, including lost income
  • Invoices for vehicle repairs, replacement of a totaled vehicle, and temporary transportation

Other types of documentation may help prove the economic and non-economic costs of a car accident. Your attorney will obtain all available documentation as they work to prove your damages.

Determining Liability for the Car Accident

Attorneys identify who caused the car accident and who is financially responsible for the client’s damages. Liable parties may include:

  • Motorists whose negligent actions lead to an accident
  • Vehicle manufacturers whose defective product contributes to an accident
  • Vehicle sellers who fail to conduct due diligence on new or used vehicles or warn the consumer about risks
  • Municipalities that create or allow dangerous road conditions
  • Pedestrians and bicyclists who cause an accident (perhaps by entering the roadway when vehicles are coming)

Insurers are often required to pay for car accident victims’ damages. Depending on insurance rules in your state, you may deserve compensation from your insurer and a third party’s insurer.

Your lawyer may advise you to sue those who caused your accident, in which case your attorney may negotiate a settlement with their attorney or take your case to trial.

Securing Evidence to Prove Liability

Evidence is a key piece of any successful car accident claim or lawsuit. Useful evidence in your own case may include:

  • Video from security cameras, cellphones, or traffic cameras
  • Witness accounts that reflect your account of the accident
  • An expert’s digital or physical reconstruction of your accident
  • A law enforcement officer’s report detailing the collision
  • Photographs of vehicle damage, the accident scene, and other sites relevant to your case

Law firms often have investigators whose primary role is securing evidence from auto accidents. These resources will enable you to rest and recover as your law firm builds your case against liable parties.

Calculating the Total Cost of the Car Accident

Car accident victims can face a five-, six-, or even seven-figure burden between economic and non-economic damages. Attorneys’ ability to calculate non-economic damages is especially helpful, as many car accident victims do not know the cost of pain, psychological distress, and other non-economic damages.

Communicating (and Negotiating with) Insurers

Insurance companies handle communications with insurance companies. A car accident victim must realize that insurance companies do not always operate in good faith. Having an attorney will protect you from any insurance-related issues that can compromise your financial recovery.

Your lawyer may need to:

  • Provide your account of the accident to insurers
  • Provide relevant evidence and documentation to insurers
  • Respond to claim-related decisions and requests from the insurers
  • Negotiate a settlement with insurers

Insurance companies may operate in good faith, but there is no reason to risk your claim by dealing directly with insurers. Let an attorney handle this and every other aspect of your case.

Securing a Settlement or Going to Trial

Obtaining a fair financial recovery is the entire point of hiring a lawyer. An attorney will either:

  • Negotiate the financial recovery you deserve with insurance companies
  • File a lawsuit and possibly take your case to trial (after discussing this course of action with you)

You should receive regular updates from your lawyer as settlement negotiations progress. They will evaluate insurers’ offers with you, explaining why each offer is or isn’t fair. Collectively, you will decide whether to seek additional compensation at trial or accept the most valuable settlement offer you receive.

Car Accident Lawyers Protect the Client Throughout the Claims Process

Car Accident Lawyers Protect the Client Throughout the Claims Process

A car accident claim or lawsuit is a gauntlet, and you may face hazards you aren’t even aware of. An attorney will protect you from:

Taking Actions That Harm Your Case

It’s not as if you are often in car accidents, so acting appropriately after a collision can be difficult. Having a lawyer will prevent you from:

  • Accidentally suggesting that you are at fault for the collision, as even apologizing to the wrong party can jeopardize your ultimate compensation
  • Failing to collect useful evidence that can support your right to financial recovery
  • Accepting a settlement offer that won’t adequately cover your accident-related damages

By simply taking over your case, your lawyer will spare you from many hazards that can adversely affect the outcome and your future.

Bad-Faith Tactics by Insurers

Insurance companies often have ulterior financial motives when handling car accident claims. The insurer may work to limit your financial recovery by:

  • Providing a lowball settlement offer in hopes that you will accept and free the insurer from further financial liability
  • Assigning your losses a less-than-fair financial value
  • Denying your claim
  • Delaying your claim, which may impose further financial stress on you (and possibly tempt you to accept a lowball settlement offer)

Car accident lawyers are familiar with insurers and such bad-faith tactics. Your attorney will shield you from bad-faith tactics and fight to secure the entire financial recovery you deserve.

Compromising Your Physical Health

Completing a claim or lawsuit may require the following:

  • Going to the accident scene, perhaps multiple times
  • Completing a slew of paperwork and communications
  • Appearing for in-person settlement negotiations
  • Driving to see damaged vehicles, visit medical professionals, and tend to other case-related matters

In addition to the psychological demands your case imposes, it may also place a physical toll on the person handling it. If you choose not to hire an attorney, your recovery process may stall as a consequence.

Endangering Your Psychological and Emotional Health

Car accident victims often face post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and other conditions that can worsen if they face additional stress. Handling an insurance claim or lawsuit can be immensely stressful, even catastrophic, for your mental and emotional well-being.

What Damages Will My Car Accident Lawyer Demand Compensation For?

What Damages Will My Car Accident Lawyer Demand Compensation For

Attorneys must be well-acquainted with their clients’ damages, which may include:

Pain and Suffering

Auto accidents can be psychologically and emotionally devastating for victims and may cause:

  • PTSD
  • Anxiety (including a fear of riding in motor vehicles)
  • Depression
  • Substance use issues
  • Sleep problems
  • Lost quality of life
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Loss of self-esteem

These types of damages have a financial cost, even if it is not obvious. Your attorney may hire a mental health professional to evaluate your pain and suffering and outline a treatment course.

Vehicle damage from a car accident may require:

  • Extensive repairs
  • Total replacement of the damaged vehicle
  • Temporary transportation, which may include a rental car, taxis, and rideshare services

These are common types of damages among car accident victims and can be costly.

Medical Bills

Your attorney will seek fair compensation for all accident-related medical services, which may include:

  • Ambulance or Medevac transport
  • Emergency medical services
  • Imaging services
  • Appointments with general physicians and specialists
  • Medications
  • Surgeries
  • Hospital services
  • Rehabilitation-related services

Medical expenses are often more than a car accident victim can pay on their own. If someone else caused your accident, those parties or insurers should cover all your medical bills.

Professional Harm

Car accident victims often face:

  • Lost income
  • Diminished earning capacity
  • Lost chances for bonuses and promotions
  • Lost benefits (which may occur if you have to quit your job or change professional roles)
  • Psychological harm caused by your inability to work

Such professional damages can have a high cost. After all, being unable to earn an income may eliminate your primary or sole source of financial support.

The Cost of a Disability

Those who suffer disabling injuries may face additional economic and non-economic hardship, including:

  • Medical equipment such as wheelchairs and lift devices for the home
  • The cost of a specialized vehicle
  • Loss of physical and cognitive abilities
  • Profound changes in mood and personality
  • Permanent loss of income

Pain and suffering can be devastating in cases of disabling injuries. Your attorney will evaluate all damages if you or a loved one are disabled because of a car accident.

A Wrongful Death

Car accidents can cause fatal injuries, leaving loved ones with many serious damages that may include:

  • Grief
  • Depression
  • Loss of the decedent’s non-economic value
  • Loss of the decedent’s contributions to their household
  • Loss of the decedent’s financial support
  • Funeral and burial costs

Most attorneys who handle car accident cases also handle wrongful death cases. These cases require the utmost sensitivity for the client’s loss, so seek an attorney with a positive reputation for client service.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Choosing a Car Accident Attorney

Finding the right attorney is essential to your peace of mind and your case’s success. When you are conducting research into attorneys, consider the following:

  • Whether they serve your geographical area: The first step in finding a lawyer is determining if they handle cases in your city. If you Google “car accident lawyer in my area,” you will find law firms that can serve you.
  • What results they have secured: Seek a law firm with proven case results. Many law firms have secured large settlements and jury verdicts. Case results are one of the most important criteria to weigh when finding your attorney.
  • What client reviews say: Former clients will tell you the good and the bad of any law firm. Find reviews from open resources like Google, where former clients can speak freely about various law firms.
  • How you feel during your free consultation: Most car accident law firms offer free consultation. These no-cost calls allow law firms to learn about clients and vice versa. If a law firm is compassionate and attentive during your free consultation, it should factor into your decision of which firm to hire.

You can change attorneys if you believe you have hired the wrong firm. However, the better option is to hire a qualified lawyer the first time around.

When Should I Hire My Attorney?

You should not wait to hire a car accident lawyer. Waiting to retain your attorney can:

  • Delay the collection of evidence that is vital to your case (video footage and certain other evidence may only be available for a brief period)
  • Cause the expiration of the statute of limitations for a car accident lawsuit (your lawyer will need the option of filing a lawsuit in case insurers do not offer a fair settlement)

While you do not have an attorney, you are vulnerable to insurance companies and any other party that may undermine your case. The sooner you hire your lawyer, the quicker you will protect your rights and future.

There Is Limited Financial Risk in Hiring a Car Accident Attorney

Brian Flood, Car Accident Attorney

Attorneys understand (more than most) that car accident victims have little time, energy, or financial means to put toward an insurance claim or lawsuit. Lawyers provide the financial resources a car accident victim needs by:

  • Requiring no upfront fee from their clients
  • Covering all case-related fees and expenses
  • Taking any fee from the settlement or judgment they secure for the client

Don’t wait any longer to hire your car accident lawyer. You have nothing to lose by starting the search for an experienced personal injury lawyer and learning how they can benefit your case.

Brian Flood


Brian has dedicated his entire legal career to helping accident victims. By choice, he has never represented the interests of an insurance company.

Author's Bio

Request A Free Consultation

Fill out the form below and get help today.

"*" indicates required fields

*field required
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Footer Call To Action Image