If you’ve suffered injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident, snowmobile accident, motorcycle accident or any other accident involving motorized vehicles, you may be wondering whether you need a personal injury lawyer and what unfolds after you’ve hired one.

It’s important to understand your entitlements and responsibilities in the aftermath of an accident and an experienced personal injury lawyer will provide important advice on management of your file, filing required documentation and protecting your interests.

In Nova Scotia, everyone operating a motor vehicle is required by law to have a valid policy of insurance.  The standard auto insurance policy in this province has a number of coverage sections. The most important ones in terms of an accident are those involving liability coverage (for whoever is at fault for the accident) and accident benefits coverage. Accident Benefits assist you (and others in your vehicle) with the cost of medical treatment, disability benefits for income loss and reimbursement for other incidental costs arising from injuries even if you were totally responsible for the accident.

If your injuries were caused by another driver, you may be entitled to a claim for damages which could include amounts for pain and suffering, lost income and out-of-pocket expenses.

There are limitation periods which apply and affect your ability to bring an action to recover monetary compensation for any damages/injuries sustained. These limitation periods can vary depending on the circumstances of the accident and the parties involved. It is very important to call a lawyer right away to ensure that you do not miss any of the relevant limitation periods. Failing to do so may prevent you from proceeding and recovering anything for your injuries and losses.

The personal injury lawyer has an important job in building your case through the collection of witness statements, relevant medical evidence, expert reports and other key information. This helps establish your overall claim (which you must prove) that the opposing party who caused your injuries is liable for monetary damages.

Importantly, the lawyer works on your behalf to present your claim in the best possible fashion in order to maximize your potential monetary recovery either through early resolution or by way of judgment after a trial.  An experienced personal injury lawyer will ensure you meet your disclosure obligations under the law and identify opportunities and methods for resolution of your claim.