Compensation can be a bit of a gray area. As the laws vary in different States and Territories in Australia, it can get very confusing. In addition to this, each situation is assessed individually, so there is no real rule of thumb when it comes to determining your entitlements.
The best option is to seek legal advice before you sign or accept any offer of compensation. Quite often insurance companies offer you less than an acceptable amount but how will you even know if you have been fairly compensated until you have spoken to a lawyer (attorney or solicitor)? Once you have accepted an offer, you will be prevented from making further claims for compensation, and this may leave you short changed. On the other hand, the insurance company will be in a better position.
In the case of an injury suffered in the workplace such as a back injury, repetitive strain injury, etc. injury compensation is awarded under Workers Compensation. The insurance company i.e. WorkCover QLD (if you are a worker in QLD) operates a ‘no fault’ system which means you are entitled to a statutory compensation claim covering losses and expenses relating to your injury. You may also be entitled to a common law claim if a personal injury was as a result of negligence wholly or partially.
In the case of a car accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your injury such as whiplash, broken bones, etc. but if the accident took place in Queensland for example under the Queensland legislation, you have to prove that someone was at fault as they operate a ‘fault-based’ scheme. In other parts of Australia, it may be a completely different story. In any case, it is important that you speak with a Sydney, AUS personal injury lawyer right away to protect your rights.
If you have suffered an injury it is important to take the following steps:
Report the injury to your employer (if a work accident) or the police (if a road accident) or to a lawyer (if the injury took place in a public place). Failing to report injury can seriously affect your claim for compensation.
Next, seek medical attention regardless of the severity of you injury. It is important to have medical records to support your claim for compensation;
Then seek legal advice and find out your entitlements and if you require the services of a personal injury lawyer.
An injury can have a significant impact on your life and may leave you with physical impairment, have a psychological impact and cause other financial stresses that you could have done without. If you have suffered an injury, you deserve to be compensated fairly and justly. Compensation is your legal right and you are entitled to it. One reason insurance is compulsory for employers and drivers, is so when people suffer an injury they can be compensated by the insurer under the laws of the State or Territory in which the injury occurred.
Sooner or later, you will require the assistance of a lawyer to represent you in legal cases such as personal injury, worker’s compensation, family-related matters (divorce/separation, child custody…etc), including others. This is especially if your legal case is complicated or involves a lot of money.
Besides dispensing necessary legal information, a lawyer offers strategic advice and applies state-of-the-art technical skills to your legal problem.
Because the process involved in hiring a reputable lawyer is intimidating and nerve-wracking, here are some unbeatable lawyer selection tips you will find useful.
Determine What Type of Lawyer You Need
The right lawyer will best represent your interests in your case, which is why you need to find one who specializes in the practice area that your case involves. It could be family law, personal injury, bankruptcy law, trusts and estates, employment law, corporate or small business law, criminal law, including others.
Contact Local Bar Association to Inquire about Qualified Lawyers
Your local state bar association keeps public records about any complaints and disciplinary actions taken against licensed lawyers. This is a great place to start. These associations also have referral services that can assist you to find a lawyer that best suits your case’s needs.
Check Online Reviews
There are many online listings of lawyers where different websites offer free reviews of specific businesses. Cross-references these reviews from more than one websites until you find your suitable match.
Get Recommendations and Referrals from Friends, Family, and Lawyers
If you know a family member or a friend who has hired a lawyer before, talk to them. Inquire about who they hired, their area of specialization, whether they were satisfied with the services, whether they would recommend the lawyer or not and why, and request their contact information.
Also, request some referrals from your current lawyer if you want another lawyer who specializes in a different field.
Check the Lawyer’s Website
If you have a potential candidate, consider reviewing his/her website. Here, you will find general legal information about the services offered, the firm he/she works for or whether he/she is flying solo, education qualifications, credentials such as licensing and other legal permits, experience, availability, including other necessary information.
If his social media accounts are linked to the websites, check them out. You are sure to find some useful information which you can use to decide whether to hire him or not.
While you can find much of the necessary information on his website, it’s also advisable to ask questions such as;
• What is the success rate?
• What is the standard pricing? Are there additional fees?
• When will you be available to start?
• Is your work schedule reliable and flexible to suit my case’s needs?
• How quickly can I expect you to complete the legal project?
• Can you provide references?
• Do you have a license and other necessary documentations?
• Can I trust you?
These questions help you analyze their character and expertise handling the case at hand.
Consider the Size of the Firm
While it’s best to select a lawyer who is best suited for your case, the size of the firm also matters. Typically, big corporations go for large firms because of the lengthy and intricate procedures involved, not to mention huge sums of money involved. If yours is a personal injury case, divorce/separation or a child custody battle, hiring a lawyer from a small firm is recommended.
Legal cases can be lengthy and complex, which is why you need a reputable and experienced lawyer to represent you, especially in court. Hopefully, these lawyer selection tips will make the whole process less intricate.
Based on the research done by the US Department of Transportation, there are over 6 million car accidents that take place annually. If the accident is a typical fender bender and no one is injured, the accident can usually be handled by your insurance company. According to that accident statistics, every 14 seconds, a related injury will happen and that someone will die every 12 minutes. In Mississippi, this resulted in nearly 600 fatal car accidents in 2010 alone. That number has risen since.
When a death or serious injury occurs, the possibility for problems and litigation go up dramatically. Drivers do know what to do when a fender bender occurs, but some don’t know that it is a must that they should call a personal injury lawyer.
You have to get the names, addresses and insurance information of the drivers or witnesses involved in the scene. Call the police to make a report about it. Remain at the scene until an officer arrives and cooperates in preparing the accident report.
Once injuries are on the scene, there are additional steps for you to take. Having yourself checked by a physician is the first thing that you have to do. You won’t need a lawyer if the bruises and wounds that you obtained would heal quickly.
If it is proved that the injuries are severe, then this will be noted in your medical records which will be a part of the accident report. Do not delay treatment for your injuries because once you do, it would be a lot difficult to prove the injuries and the accident.
The great need for a personal injury lawyer arises when a person is suffering from severe injuries like whiplash, broken bones, paralysis, or death
Expect that once you file an injury claim, the insurance company will not be happy with that. The company has no duty to make sure you recover what your claim is worth. What matters most to these insurance companies is the amount of money that they would be able to save and not how much you would receive.
As much as possible, do not deal with the company on your own because you might say things that can reduce the value of your claim. Don’t think that you case is different from other insurance customers because the company always experiences handling people like you every day.
The things that will benefit you if you get a Mississippi accident lawyer include: the lawyer will be able to help you get the right value for your claim and your rights will be protected as well. Lawyers are aware of what laws you should apply to your case and you will receive the fair amount of money that you need to.
If you receive the right amount of compensation from the insurance company, that’s the time that personal injury lawyers get their pay. If the lawyer wasn’t able to help you get money from the insurance company, then you have to pay him or her either way. The lawyer gets a percentage of the fee paid to you by the insurance company which probably serves as his incentive.
Statistics show that when there are car accidents, the potential for injuries is high. But if you know what to do and who to call during instances like these, then somehow, you would calm down.