Talking to a lawyer right away is essential to making sure your claim is handled properly from the get go. Many times an insurance company will try to get to you early and get you to say something that is against your interests. Many times critical evidence disappears unless it is preserved. In some circumstances, if you do not properly notify the potential wrongdoer, you can lose the ability to bring a claim at all!
Example #1: A person is t-boned while driving through a solid green light by a vehicle that had a red light. The insurance company asks, "Did you look to see if the way was clear before entering the intersection after the light turned green?" You respond, "I'm not sure. But why would I? The light was green?" Before you know it, the insurance company is only accepting 50% liability based on your statement.
Example #2: A person falls down tripping over a sidewalk that is not properly leveled. They notify the municipality, who sends a crew out to fix the defect before any photographs can be taken of the area where the person fell. Now it is difficult to prove there was a defect or how large of a defect existed at the time of the fall.
Example #3: You fall on public property and are injured. At first, you just feel a little wrist pain, but nothing serious. A few weeks later, your wrist pain has only gotten worse, and you find out you have nerve damage. Some local laws require written notice of an injury within a certain number of days of an incident. If you do not notify them, you could be SOL.
A lawyer can help you do the right things before mistakes are made. Give us a call if you have any specific questions or think we might be able to help.