Do I need a lawyer if I am being blamed for a car accident and the driver was hurt? 46 Answers as of July 29, 2011

I got into a car accident and because the other driver had witnesses in his car and I was driving by myself I was seen at fault. The driver went to the hospital because he suffered injuries. I have full coverage on my vehicle and my claim adjuster said I don’t need an attorney but I need to know if I do and if the people in the other vehicle can personally sue me?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
The S.E. Farris Law Firm
The S.E. Farris Law Firm | Spencer E. Farris
Your insurance company will provide an attorney for you, without cost as part of your coverage in most situations. If the other person is badly injured, you may want to consult with an attorney of your own. If there is a verdict against you in excess of your insurance coverage, you may be liable for the damages. Do not be alarmed, as this is a very rare situation, but if you have minimal coverage and the damages look large, it wouldn’t hurt to consult with a lawyer.
Answer Applies to: Missouri
Replied: 7/29/2011
Timothy Jones, Attorney at Law
Timothy Jones, Attorney at Law | Timothy Jones
The answer to your question is maybe. Your insurance company is obligated to hire an attorney to represent you if necessary. It is also their responsibility to resolve any and all claims within your policy limits. If you believe the injury claims will exceed the value of your policy, it would be advisable to hire an attorney to safeguard your personal assets.
Answer Applies to: Oregon
Replied: 7/22/2011
Law Offices of Joseph I. Lipsky, P.A.
Law Offices of Joseph I. Lipsky, P.A. | Joseph Lipsky
The answer to your question depends upon how serious the car accident was in relation to how much car insurance you had at the time of the crash. As there is no such thing as "full coverage," it is imperative that your bodily injury liability coverage is enough to protect your personal assets. If you have a question about whether you had enough insurance coverage, an experienced personal injury attorney will be able to give you a greater insight into whether you need to his personal counsel.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 7/19/2011
Coulter's Law
Coulter's Law | Coulter K. Richardson
If the other driver sues you, immediately call your insurance company and they will assign an attorney to work on your case. And don't say you were at fault.
Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 7/19/2011
David Hoines Law
David Hoines Law | David Hoines
your insurance company will handle it for you
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 7/19/2011
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C.
    Theodore W. Robinson, P.C. | Theodore W. Robinson
    It depends in large part how much coverage youhave on your car. If the injuries of the other party could go beyond your coverage, then you certainly want an attorney of your own to advise you. Insurance companies often tell you not to bother with your own attorney because they have no vested interest in your case beyond what is atrisk for them. That can leave you in a bind, because they also don't want your lawyer looking over their shoulders to make sure they're doing the right thing by you. I always think its better to have your own attorney, but then again, I'm prejudiced, because I am a lawyer. But I would hire my own lawyer if I was in thesame situation. Good luck.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/19/2011
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC
    The Lucky Law Firm, PLC | Robert Morrison Lucky
    Because you had insurance on your vehicle at the time of the accident, your insurance carrier will employ an attorney for you if needed. Based on the contract of insurance, your insurance company agrees to defend you in situations such as these. Yes, you can be sued personally; however, the other party may only recover from you for anything over and above the liability policy limits. Your insurance company is obligated to protect your best interests.
    Answer Applies to: Louisiana
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Vincent J. Bernabei LLC
    Vincent J. Bernabei LLC | Vincent J. Bernabei
    If the injured persons are seeking more in damages than you have in insurance coverage, then you should have your own attorney, if only to demand that your insurance company settle the claims at or below your policy limits.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A.
    Paul Whitfield and Associates P.A. | Paul L. Whitfield
    Yes they can sue you. Your carrier will provide you with an attorney IFSUIT IS FILED. If no suit is filed the adjuster will take care of it. That is what you pay premiums for
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Wilson & Hajek, LLC
    Wilson & Hajek, LLC | Eddie W. Wilson
    Your insurance carrier will furnish an attorney. The suit will be against you but the insurance will pay up to your coverage amount. You don't need to personally hire an attorney, that's why you pay insurance premiums.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Ramunno & Ramunno, P.A.
    Ramunno & Ramunno, P.A. | Lawrence A. Ramunno
    Yes, you can be personally sued. But your insurance company will represent you, up to your policy limits. If the case is not settled, and you are sued, you should, at least, discuss with a lawyer to confirm your insurance company will protect you and pay any judgment against you, in full.
    Answer Applies to: Delaware
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    David F. Stoddard
    David F. Stoddard | David F. Stoddard
    The other people can personally sue you, but you do not need an attorney. You insurance company will provide an attorney for you who specializes in these kinds of cases. You will only be personally liable if the other driver obtains a verdict that exceeds your insurance coverage. The attorney who the insurance company hires has a duty to try to settle the case within the policy limits.
    Answer Applies to: South Carolina
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Patrick M Lamar Attorney
    Patrick M Lamar Attorney | Patrick M Lamar
    You absolutely do need a lawyer and should demand one from your insurance company. This is what you pay premiums for.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A.
    Kelaher Law Offices, P.A. | James P Kelaher
    Your insurance company should provide you with legal representation.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Law Office of Jared Altman
    Law Office of Jared Altman | Jared Altman
    If a lawsuit is commenced against you then you must report that to your automobile insurance company and it will provide you with a defense, including representation by an attorney at no charge to you. If the injuries sustained by the person(s) suing you are so severe that there is a potential for a verdict against you that exceeds your liability coverage limits, then, under that circumstance, you might want to consult with an attorney. When choosing an attorney, I recommend that you find one with a background in insurance defense litigation. Jared Altman, Esq. Law Office of Jared Altman 2125 Albany Post Road, Montrose, NY 10548-1447 Phone: (914) 737-0200 . Fax: (914) 737-5504 AltmanLawOffice.com This email may contain confidential information. If you received this in error, kindly reply to let us know and then delete this email.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Ferguson & Ferguson
    Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
    You do not need an attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law
    Gary Moore, Attorney at Law | Gary Moore
    For a personal injury lawsuit based on the accident your car insurance carrier is contractually obligated to provide liability coverage up to the limits of your insurance policy and to provide you with a lawyer, with no legal fees charged to you personally. If you are sued, you should give the summons and complaint to your insurance company, by certified mail. Gary Moore
    Answer Applies to: New Jersey
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator
    Bernard Huff, Attorney/Mediator | Bernard Huff
    Yes, you probably do needa personal injury attorneyeven if it only for legalconsultation.
    Answer Applies to: Indiana
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Raheen Law Group, P.C.
    Raheen Law Group, P.C. | Wali Raheen
    The injured party can sue you; but, since you have coverage, you should turned it over to your insurance company. This would occur if the injured party cannot reach a settlement with your insurance company. If your insurance company is handling the matter then there would be nothing for another attorney to do.
    Answer Applies to: Virginia
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    LT Pepper Law
    LT Pepper Law | Luke T. Pepper
    The insurance company will provide you a lawyer. You are free to hire your own lawyer but if you are insured a lawyer will be assigned to defend the matter. They can all sue you and go after you for damages that exceed the policy limits. It depends on whether you have assets and how severe the injuries are.
    Answer Applies to: Pennsylvania
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Kirshner & Groff
    Kirshner & Groff | Richard M. Kirshner
    They can sue you but your insurance company should be able to take care of it. Make sure they get a release from all those making a claim. If they don't speak to a lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Law Offices of Steven R. Kuhn & Associates
    Law Offices of Steven R. Kuhn & Associates | Steven R. Kuhn
    It depends on the amount of coverage you have and how serious the injuries to the other people are. If the damages exceed your coverage you may want to consult with an experienced personal injury defense attorney.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Lyle B. Masnikoff and Associates
    Lyle B. Masnikoff and Associates | Lyle B. Masnikoff
    You probably don't need an attorney. You insurance company will handle the claim Sent from Lyle B. Masnikoff
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Any one can file a suit, even you. If the other parties were to serve you with a law suit, send the suit to the adjuster.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Miller & Harrison, LLC
    Miller & Harrison, LLC | David Harrison
    Your only real concern would be if you did not have sufficient insurance coverage to cover the damages to the people in the other car. If it looks like that is a possibility, your insurer is obligated to notify you that you may face exposure to your personal finances because the claims exceed your insurance coverage. I hope this helps.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Beaver Holt Sternlicht and Courie, P.A.
    Beaver Holt Sternlicht and Courie, P.A. | Mark A. Sternlicht
    If your insurance coverage is enough to pay all claims, then you don't need to hire an attorney. If your insurance company doesn't settle, then the other driver can sue you, but your insurance company will provide a lawyer to represent you. The only time when you would need to hire your own lawyer is if the claims are greater than your coverage. In that situation, it would be a good idea to consult an independent lawyer other than the one provided by your insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: North Carolina
    Replied: 7/18/2011
    Law Office of Dewey N. Hayes, Jr., PC
    Law Office of Dewey N. Hayes, Jr., PC | Dewey N. Hayes
    anytime you have a significant event that may subject you to personal liabilty ,you need consult your own attorney . take your auto insurance policies of household with you . depending on extent of your coverage limits & severity of their injuries , you may have personal exposure above your personal auto insurance limits & probably not , but you may need to employ your own attorney depending on your companys attitude on settlement & other variables .
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Holzer Edwards
    Holzer Edwards | Kurt Holzer
    When you buy insurance one of the things it comes with is an attorney if one is needed. Your insurance company will hire a lawyer of its choice to represent you and pay for that lawyer if the claim cannot be resolved.
    Answer Applies to: Idaho
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Law Office of Mark J. Leonardo
    Law Office of Mark J. Leonardo | Mark Leonardo
    If you have insurance, you may still get sued, but your insurer will pay for the attorney you need. Your only concern is whether, if the accident was truly your fault and the other guy was seriously injured, will his claim exceed the coverage you have? If you only have a $15,000/$30,000 policy, you might speak to the adjuster to see if they have a potential range of values of the case and whether it may exceed your policy limits. Most parties dont go after the individual for the amount of damages in excess of the available policy limits, but sometimes they do if the person in your shoes has assets and a job that could afford to pay damages. M
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Harris Law Firm
    Harris Law Firm | Paul Vames
    Unless you receive a letter from your insurance company indicating that they are not extending coverage, you probably don't need an attorney yet. Your insurer will attempt to settle the matter on your behalf and obtain a release of liability in your favor without litigation. If the case doesn't settle without litigation, and assuming your coverage is in place, your insurance company should hire an attorney for you. You have a duty to cooperate with your insurance company and its attorney in the defense of your case. Also, it is better if you communicate only with your insurance company. Avoid talking to friends, witnesses, family members, or any other people about that claim. Direct all information to your insurance company and cooperate with the company; you should be fine.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    The Law Office of Josh Lamborn, P.C.
    The Law Office of Josh Lamborn, P.C. | Josh Lamborn
    The people in the car can sue you, but your insurance company is contractually bound to defend the case on your behalf and pay on your behalf if you are found to be negligent (up to the policy limit). If you have a low policy limit ($25k) and the injury to the other driver is very serious you may be sued for an amount over the policy limit. The insurance company will still represent you, but you may have to pay for any excess amount awarded over the limit. Prior to a lawsuit being filed it is unlikely that you would need an attorney. If a lawsuit is filed for an amount over the policy limit you may want to consider at least consulting with you own attorney to know what your rights are and so you fully understand your exposure.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C.
    Andrew T. Velonis, P.C. | Andrew Velonis
    Your insurance company will cover you. They will investigate the accident and decide whether to negotiate or deny the claim. If your insurance company denies the claim and the injured party sues you, your insurance company will hire a lawyer to defend you. If you are found liable, your insurance company will pay the damages up to the amount of your coverage. Of course, if you receive suit papers, you must turn them over to your insurance company and you must co-operate with your insurance company at all times. You could hire a lawyer to make sure your insurance company is protecting your rights if it is worth your peace of mind. Lastly, check with your insurance agent to find out if homeowners policy carries a Personal Liability Excess Policy to provide coverage above your regular policy.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Rothstein Law PLLC
    Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
    Yes, you can be sued. No, you don't need an attorney because your carrier will hire an attorney to represent you.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Law Office of Travis Prestwich, PC
    Law Office of Travis Prestwich, PC | Travis Prestwich
    At this point no. Your insurance company will hire one for you when needed.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Law Offices of Tom Patton
    Law Offices of Tom Patton | Thomas C. Patton
    Your insurance company will provide a lawyer for you if the other driver files a law suit.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Law Offices of Earl K. Straight
    Law Offices of Earl K. Straight | Earl K. Straight
    The other people can sue you personally, but that is usually the last step. They will first make a claim with your insurance company and 99% of the time your insurance will settle their claims. If not, and you are sued and served with papers, you just need to turn everything over to your insurance. They will hire an attorney to defend you, that is what you pay your premiums for. So I dont think you need to go out and hire an attorney, that would be a waste of money, let you insurance company handle it on your behalf.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Law Offices of Steven A. Fink
    Law Offices of Steven A. Fink | Steven Alan Fink
    You have reported the claim to your insurance company. If you get sued they have a duty to defend and pay for any claims in the lawsuit. You will only be responsible for the deductible. No need for you to hire your own attorney now. If you get sued or contacted by the other driver's attorney, send it to your insurance company.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP
    Cody and Gonillo, LLP | Christine Gonilla
    your insurance company will provide the attorney if necessary
    Answer Applies to: Connecticut
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Idiart Law Group
    Idiart Law Group | Justin Idiart
    Your insurance company will hire a lawyer to represent you if it gets that far.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
    Rose, Senders & Bovarnick, LLC
    Rose, Senders & Bovarnick, LLC | Paul S. Bovarnick
    Unless the lawsuit is for more than the limits of your insurance, you will not need your own lawyer.
    Answer Applies to: Oregon
    Replied: 7/16/2011
Click to View More Answers:
12 3 4 5 6 7 Free Legal QuestionsConnect with a local attorney