If you are ever involved in a personal injury accident, the first thing you will (probably) do is file a personal injury claim or lawsuit. You’ll need to hire a personal injury lawyer to do so. However, you may not be able to afford one. You may wonder if either your insurance company or the defendant’s insurance company will pay for your lawyer. Did you know that an insurance company funding your lawyer depends on if you are the plaintiff or defendant?

If you were involved in a personal injury accident and were injured, and you’re making a ‘first-party claim, your insurance company will not pay for your personal injury lawyer. Your insurance company will also not press a cause of action (lawsuit) against the defendant. This is because your insurance company only has one task and that is to investigate the merits of your claim and reimburse you accordingly.

This remains true even if you want to make a third-party claim with the defendant’s insurance company. However, don’t fret and tear your hair out. Your personal injury lawyer in Clovis will inform you that he or she works on a contingency agreement. This means that he or she is not paid until and unless you win a settlement, either in or out of court.

What happens if you were even partially at fault?

Your personal injury lawyer will inform you that the situation is much different if you were even partially at fault and your current insurance policy covers the cause(s) of the personal injury accident. In this instance, your insurance company will pay for your lawyer because of its ‘duty to defend’ you.

A good example of this would be if you were involved in a T-bone car accident with a drunk driver, but you had been drinking before driving. You would be partially at fault for the accident even if your blood alcohol level was well under the legal limit of .5. This is partial because it’s illegal to drink even a drop of alcohol before driving (at least in all 50 American states!) if you were filing a lawsuit against the defendant, your insurance company would pay for all relevant costs. These would include the cost of hiring a personal injury lawyer,filing fees, fees to obtain official transcripts and more.

If you are the plaintiff but your actions breached your contract with your insurance company, it can refuse to pay for all of the costs of your personal injury lawsuit.

Now that you know the conditions under which your insurance company will pay for your personal injury lawyer,you can make better decisions when filing a personal injury lawsuit.