1. You’ve Been Significantly Injured
Sometimes you’ll slip and fall, but all you’ll have is a couple of bruises or scratches that didn’t break the skin. In cases like these, you usually won’t require treatment, so you have no reason to contact an attorney and try to make a claim. However, severe lacerations, sprains, broken bones, head injuries, and any other type of serious injury are a cause for concern.
You’ll have medical bills, missed work days, and likely some emotional distress. You should contact an attorney to help you build a case and win compensation for your damages. This applies in all cases where you’ve been injured when visiting someone else’s premises, on the job, and more. Learn more here about premises liability and how to hire a lawyer.
2. You Need Help With an Investigation
You can’t just claim you were injured on somebody’s property without proof. You need an attorney to help you open an investigation to prove that you were injured and who’s liable. Your attorney can help you get photo and video evidence of the accident site, take testimonies from witnesses, and have you medically assessed to prove your injuries are a result of an accident on somebody’s premises.
If it was a particularly serious accident, then the investigations will likely be very in-depth, so you need somebody highly qualified to work with you. Working with the best person for the job will give you the best chance of winning compensation that covers all of your damages. An attorney who’ll help you gather as much evidence as you can is an asset in premises liability cases.
3. You Were Offered a Settlement
Sometimes those liable for your accident will take responsibility straight away and contact their insurance company to inform them somebody was injured on their premises. The insurance company may then offer you a settlement intended to cover your damages. However, you can’t be sure the settlement they offer will fully cover all of your damages.
Show the settlement to an attorney and talk through the details of your case. Inform the attorney of your injuries and of the impact these injuries have had on your life. Your attorney can use this information to calculate how much you may be entitled to in economic and non-economic damages. If the settlement you’ve been offered doesn’t cover all the damages, then your attorney might offer to work with you so you can seek a larger settlement.
4. You Need Help Negotiating
Sometimes you’ll know when an insurance company’s offer is too low without consulting an attorney. Perhaps it doesn’t cover all of your medical bills or the income you lost while taking time off work. In these cases, you can negotiate for more money, and contacting an attorney to help you do so will give you a higher chance of winning a settlement closer to what you deserve.
Furthermore, you probably aren’t taking non-economic damages for pain and suffering into account when evaluating the settlement offer on your own. Your attorney can calculate how much you’re likely entitled to in non-economic damages, and they can begin negotiations with the insurance company on your behalf.
5. You Need to Go to Trial
Chances are you’ll be able to settle your premises liability claim outside of court. However, if the accident was quite substantial and you’re seeking a large sum of money, then you should most definitely work with a qualified attorney who has plenty of courtroom experience in premises liability cases. You may end up needing to go in front of a judge and jury. It’s never a good idea to try and deal with aspects of the law by yourself, even if you feel up to the task.
What Kind of Damages Are Covered in a Premises Liability Case?
Premises liability cases vary considerably, so what damages you’re entitled to vary depending on your situation. At the very least, you could be entitled to compensation for:
- Current and future medical treatment
- Current and future lost wages
- Physical and emotional suffering
You can consult a premises liability attorney at any time after you’ve experienced an accident and injury on somebody else’s property. It’s best to contact them straight away. However, if you neglected to do so, then there’s nothing stopping you from contacting an attorney if you’ve been offered a settlement. You can even call in legal aid if you’ve already begun negotiations with the insurance company on your own.