We think being educated on how injury claims work is important for everyone, regardless of whether you have an ongoing claim. Knowing what your options are can be life-changing. We asked our lawyers to give us their responses to the top questions people ask about injury claims, so we could share them with you before you even have to ask.
1. I’m not sure I can afford a personal injury lawyer. How much does an injury claim cost?
Many people worry that they won’t be able to afford a personal injury lawyer. In reality, many injury lawyers in Alberta work on a contingency fee basis. This means two things:
- You won’t have to pay anything upfront
- Our fee is based on a percentage of the settlement you receive once we resolve the case
At Litco Law, we’ll also cover the cost of disbursements throughout the claim, so you don’t have to worry about costly legal bills. We never bill by the hour, and consultations are always free.
2. How much money is my claim worth?
There is no quick and easy way to put an exact number on an injury claim. The law takes into account how severe your injuries are, how they impact your life, and for how long. Various other factors may determine how much a claim is worth, for example:
A person who is paralyzed for life would be entitled to more compensation than someone with a broken wrist. But, if the person with the broken wrist is a highly paid professional hockey player who will never be able to play again, the overall value of the claim would increase because that person’s career and income are significantly impacted as a result of their injury.
An injury lawyer will be able to assess these factors and tell you how much money they think your claim may be worth.
3. Should I accept the insurance company’s offer?
Insurance companies may be quick to offer settlements in the days and weeks following an accident, sometimes before you realize the full extent of your injuries or possible long-term implications of the accident. Accepting an offer before you know the full picture of your injuries means you run the risk of receiving a much lower settlement.
If the insurance company of the at-fault party contacts you for additional information about the accident, you are not obligated to answer their questions. Talk to an experienced injury lawyer and get a professional opinion before you agree to anything.
4. How long will my claim take?
It depends on your situation. It can take months or even years to fully realize the extent of your injuries. If your injuries are minor or heal quickly, your claim could be complete within a few months. For more serious injuries, it usually takes longer to have a clear picture of the impact of your injuries on your long-term health and ability to work or enjoy life. These claims can take a few years to resolve.
5. What if my mental health was affected by my injury?
This is something a lot of people experience but it is often less talked about. Anxiety, depression, changes in mood, or post-traumatic stress disorder can occur after an accident. This can impact your quality of life and ability to work, and therapy can be costly. Many people don’t know that they may be able to receive additional compensation for emotional distress through an injury claim. If you are experiencing mental health challenges following an injury, speak to your doctor or a therapist, and then contact your injury lawyer.
6. How do I know if I have a case?
It’s best to speak with a lawyer to answer this question. An injury lawyer will gather all the details about your accident and injuries needed to determine if you have a case. Based on that information, the lawyer will be able to tell you what legal options are available to you. If it isn’t in your best interest to file a claim, we’ll tell you. At Litco Law, consults are always free, and you’ll never feel pressured. You tell us how you want to proceed.
7. I feel bad suing someone. I don’t want to be “that person.”
We hear this a lot, and we get it. But if you’ve been injured because of someone else’s negligence, and you’re suffering as a result, you deserve to receive treatment and compensation. It’s important to remember that it will often be the other party’s insurance company, not the actual individual, that ultimately covers the costs. This is the purpose of liability insurance. So, you shouldn’t feel guilty about collecting compensation for your recovery. This is where a lawyer can step in and advocate for your rights.
We hope these answers have been of help to you. It’s not uncommon to feel confused or overwhelmed if you’ve been involved in an accident. There are no silly questions, and you may find that more pop up along the way. You can find more information on our FAQs page, and you can always contact us with your legal questions at any time.
Have questions about an injury claim? We’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have. Just give us a call, send us a message, or fill out our contact form online, and we’ll reach out to you. We look forward to hearing from you!