Some people choose to be represented by themselves rather than hiring a personal injury solicitor, this exposes them to more potential risks that they might face.

In an article written by Steven Gursten, he describes a usual picture he sees in his daily practice, where an insurance adjuster will go after and stalk a personal injury victim and persuade them into accepting a resolution without hiring a solicitor. As what Gursten states: “The insurance industry estimates that when an solicitor becomes involved, the settlement value of any car accident claim increases fourfold. That’s why so many insurance companies essentially stalk accident victims – to prevent them from hiring an experienced personal injury solicitor.”

Gursten’s writing gives emphasis on the important question that most injured victims ask themselves after being hurt in an accident – should they represent themselves or hire a solicitor? Practically speaking, it is always wise to hire a solicitor. As the old saying goes “A person who represents him or herself on a legal matter has a fool for a client” Still, some still choose not to be represented by a solicitor. Perhaps it’s because of the fee?

It is never an issue that the victim is educated or smart enough to handle a personal injury claim by himself. Most people have the capacity to comprehend the issues that typically arise in a car accident case. The problem is that they are not trained nor experienced to identify the significance of most of the issues that may arise.

It is a false thinking that when an insurance adjuster offers to make a resolution in exchange of a signed release of claims, that if the victims develop future medical issues caused by the accident, the claim can be re-opened. The Release of All Claims – There’s no going back once signed. An experienced personal injury solicitor knows not to have the client accept a settlement offer until the client’s doctors have cleared them from further medical treatment.

Signing a release in early settlement with an adjuster, other surprises are in store for the unwary victim. For example, a lot of people are unaware that from the settle funds, they are mandated to repay any insurance companies that have paid for any accident-related medical treatment. This is called subrogation, the big surprise that awaits unrepresented victims.

An experienced solicitor will counsel the client about all the expenses of settling prior to signing any settlement release, and the solicitor will also discuss with lien holders to try to get reductions on behalf of their client, all of which leads to a higher net settlement and no unlikable surprises for the client.

Are there ever cases where a person might wish to represent themselves in negotiating a settlement with an adjuster? Yes. But without the guidance of an experienced personal injury solicitor, agreeing to such settlement offer carries noteworthy risks and may expose a person to claims for reimbursement by healthcare providers and/or insurance companies, which could reduce or eliminate the settlement amount.

This article first appeared as a press release on