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Common Myths About Personal Injury Law in Montana

Embarking on a personal injury claim journey can feel overwhelming, especially because there are many misconceptions about personal injury law that may deter accident victims from pursuing a claim. 

Whether or not to file an injury claim is always up to the injury victim, but everyone should be empowered to make an informed decision before doing so. We’ll shine a light on seven common myths surrounding personal injury lawyers and the claims process in Montana. 

Myth 1: Personal Injury Cases Always Lead to Lengthy Trials

It’s a common belief that personal injury cases inevitably lead to lengthy and expensive trials. This idea may dissuade some individuals from taking legal action because they do not want to face the headache of going to court.

Some cases do go to trial, but most are resolved through negotiation and settlement outside the courtroom. Skilled personal injury attorneys strive to achieve fair settlements efficiently, sparing you the stress and expense of prolonged litigation.

If your accident attorney advises that you take your case to litigation, it is because they believe that that at-fault party’s insurance company is failing to make a fair settlement offer. Your lawyer will represent you in court to fight for your right to fair compensation.

Myth 2: You Can Navigate Your Claim Alone

Some individuals attempt to navigate the legal process alone to save money. Not every accident case requires the assistance of an attorney, but most accident victims benefit from having legal representation. 

The intricacies of personal injury law often require expertise to navigate effectively. Studies have shown that the help of a lawyer can lead to larger settlements on average. 

A lawyer can also make the claims process much less stressful for victims and their families. Attempting to represent yourself while also healing from injuries can be overwhelming and frustrating. An experienced personal injury attorney will take on the stressful parts of the legal process so you can focus on feeling better.

Myth 3: Only Catastrophic Injuries Deserve Compensation

Another common personal injury myth is that minor injuries do not merit an accident claim. However, any physical injury can lead to pain, distress, and extensive medical bills. If you or a family member has been injured due to another person’s negligence, it is worth speaking with a lawyer to see what your options are.

Myth 4: Insurance Companies Offer Fair Settlements Without a Fight

It’s a common misconception that insurance companies will offer fair compensation without resistance. In reality, insurance companies often prioritize their profits and may offer low settlements or deny valid claims altogether. 

Having a dedicated personal injury attorney on your side ensures you have a strong advocate fighting for your rights and fair compensation. Your attorney will advise you on if, when, and how to speak with insurance adjusters to protect your right to a claim. They will also take on negotiations to help you get the payout you deserve for your medical expenses and other damages.

Myth 5: There’s No Rush to File a Claim

Some accident victims wait to file a claim. There are myriad reasons for this, but they are rooted in a common misconception: the idea that you can file a claim whenever you want. 

Every state has a statute of limitations, imposing deadlines for filing lawsuits after an injury occurs. In Montana, the statute of limitations for personal injury cases is generally three years. There are other factors that may increase or decrease this time limit, so it’s important to speak with an attorney as soon as you can. They will be able to let you know how long you have to file.

Personal injury cases do not always take years to settle, but it depends on the severity of your injuries, the responsible party’s willingness to settle, and the court’s caseload. It’s a good idea to begin working on your case as quickly as possible after your accident to give yourself enough time. Once the time frame for your case is up, you lose your right to file.

Myth 6: Injury Victims and Their Attorneys Are Greedy

The media has popularized a narrative that people who pursue personal injury lawsuits are looking for easy money or are trying to financially ruin the at-fault party by filing frivolous claims. This is simply untrue.

In reality, injury victims often have their lives significantly altered by their accident. Many victims find themselves facing severe pain and long roads to recovery. Some are unable to work after their accident, causing them to miss out on the wages they use to support their families.

Personal injury claims exist to make victims whole again. If another person acted recklessly or negligently and you were injured as a result, you deserve to be compensated appropriately. In most cases, the victim’s payout does not come out of the at-fault party’s pocket. Insurance companies—often multi-million dollar corporations—typically handle settlements.

Your personal injury attorney is there to protect your rights. Do not let the media’s portrayal of injury victims deter you from obtaining the compensation you deserve for your damages.

Myth 7: Pursuing a Claim Is Too Expensive

Another common myth is that pursuing a personal injury claim is prohibitively expensive. Most personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if you win your case. This arrangement allows individuals to seek justice without upfront costs, ensuring access to legal representation regardless of financial circumstances.

In fact, most injury attorneys calculate their fee as a percentage of your settlement. This means that you will not pay anything out-of-pocket for your attorney’s services.

A Montana Personal Injury Attorney Can Help You

Whether you’ve been injured in a car accident or have experienced the wrongful death of a loved one, it’s a good idea to have sound legal advice and representation on your side. The Advocates personal injury law firm is here for you.

Our experienced personal injury attorneys will be by your side throughout the entire claims process, answering your questions and helping you access the local resources you need. We offer 24/7 free case evaluations so you can speak with an attorney about your options at your convenience.

We have offices in Billings, Great Falls, Lewistown, and Missoula. Contact us today for a free consultation. You deserve an entire legal team dedicated to your recovery. You deserve an Advocate.