Do You Need a Lawyer's Help? You Better Believe It.
So you’ve been injured and you wonder whether you need to get a lawyer. You are not really the type to sue, and you don’t want to participate in the litigious society we’re in, where everyone is suing one another all the time. You don’t think all this litigation is good for the country. And you’re almost certainly right: it is not good for the country.
The problem is that the insurance industry has embraced this arrangement. If you want anything out of them—no matter how legitimate your claim, no matter how real your injuries—you have to sue to get it. Insurance companies routinelydeny claims filed by individual citizens who lack legal representation. Why do they do it? Because their experience tells them that many people will just go away, not fully appreciating their rights to recovery.
With the possibility of paying nothing available to them, the insurance companies will try this approach every time, no matter how valid the claim presented. It is a classic “spreadsheet” decision: the approach under which they pay the least is their first option. You can hardly blame them: it is a business, operated for the purpose of making a profit, and the less they pay injured people the more money they make. Morally you may find this a bit distasteful, but it is a straightforward reality of a rather cutthroat world.
There is an interesting parallel here between civil cases (car accidents,truck accidents, wrongful death, etc) and criminal law. Long ago the United States Supreme Court decided that individuals faced with criminal charges are entitled, by constitutional right, to a lawyer to defend them. A maze of case law led to this conclusion, but the gist of the court’s reasoning is this: when the government brings its full might and overwhelming resources to bear in prosecuting a case, fairness and due process require that the criminal defendant has a lawyer to help him navigate the legal process. Otherwise, the government and its lawyers would run circles around the unrepresented criminal defendant. That this is good policy in the criminal setting is one of the few truly bipartisan beliefs.
Well the Constitution does not entitle injured people, or families of wrongfully deceased people, to legal counsel in connection with their claims. But a similar principle applies: when an insurance company and its lawyers bring their organizational might to bear, they run circles around unrepresented claimants. The process is so complicated that an insurance company, so familiar with the claims process, has every advantage. Traywick & Traywick’ lawyers have handled cases where an injured person has had his claim flat denied, goes and gets a lawyer, and later recovers six figures. These stories are actually pretty common.
Bottom line: even people with legitimate claims, who have done nothing wrong, and who are looking only for fair and reasonable compensation, are being taken advantage of. Insurance companies do not differentiate between claims that are and are not bad for society. They just deny them all and hope the claimant does not seek a lawyer.
Perhaps that is the best evidence that you need to go get a lawyer: youknow the insurance company is hoping you won’t. One of our lawyers, David Traywick or Ben Traywick, is available right now—or any time—to discuss your case with you.