Personal injury and accident compensation is a huge business for insurance companies, and many have relationships with national law firms. But making a claim remotely — via an online form, email or over the phone — is certainly not the most effective way to get the compensation that’s rightfully owed to you. Here’s why.
You know how the ads go: “Had an accident? Not your fault? Call our accident helpline today.”
They’re everywhere. They beg us to ‘start a claim online’, fill in a form or call them. If you’ve had a road traffic accident, suffered an injury at work, in a public place or from using a product, you’re left in a unsteady physical and emotional state. It’s a delicate matter which needs empathy and lots of expertise. The last thing you want to do is make an online claim, fill in an electronic form or speak to a stranger in a call centre.
But the unfortunate truth is that most people do just that after responding to one of these advertisements. It doesn’t have to be that way. Person-to-person is the only way deal with something as delicate as personal injury and accident compensation.
Here are 10 reasons why you should always see a personal injury solicitor face-to-face.
1. You will find it easier to talk about your accident, which means your solicitor will be better equipped to fight your case.
2. It’s easier to convince a personal injury solicitor that you are a genuine, truthful person if you meet them face-to-face. Insurance companies often allege that you are exaggerating or lying about your claim. If there’s any doubt, it’s much harder to convince someone over the phone or via email that you are genuine.
3. You get continuity from visiting a law firm in person as you’ll see the same solicitor every time (or, at least you should); that person will be with you throughout the case.
4. You’re more likely to form a better working relationship with your lawyer after meeting them. This is basic human nature — we form stronger bonds with people who we communicate with face-to-face than remotely. All of this increases your chances of receiving a higher level of service (and boosting your chances of receiving more compensation) as the case progresses.
5. Your solicitor will be able to see any physical injuries, such as scarring, and take photographs of them, if required, to bolster your case.
6. And you may have psychological symptoms as a result of the accident that you’re not aware of. An experienced lawyer should detect this in a face-to-face meeting, and they may suggest that you talk to your GP about conditions such as post-traumatic stress disorder or travel anxiety.
7. It’s much safer to take important or valuable papers to a solicitor’s office when you go to meet them, rather than risk them being lost in the post. It can be cheaper too.
8. As the case progresses, it is much easier to discuss complex documents with your solicitor if you are both in the same room, with the same documents in front of you, rather than discussing them by telephone.
9. Your solicitor will generally be able to obtain more information from you during a meeting than if you were discussing the case on the phone. We communicate far more in person through body language than verbal communication alone.
10. The whole process is less stressful. You’re likely to be in an emotional turmoil. You’ll get empathy from a real person who cares about your case because they will be the one fighting your corner from start to finish. That goes along way.
Finally, some lovely solicitors (like us) make home visits if you live locally and have mobility or other health issues.
Personal injury claims are all about the client. At Parnalls, we do not have cosy relationships with insurance companies and we do not pursue claims on their behalf. We are an independent practice with one office in north east Cornwall. Our priority is you, the client. Nothing else. We can act for you under a no-win-no-fee agreement, and we will advise you about all the funding options.
To arrange a face-to-face visit to our offices in Launceston, or ask about a home visit, contact our head of litigation, Katherine Flashman Kitson on 01566 772375, or via email FlashmanKitsonK@parnalls.com.