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Patrick, Esq.
Patrick, Esq., Attorney
Category: Personal Injury Law
Satisfied Customers: 12942
Experience:  Attorney with significant personal injury experience
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Hello, I was in a car accident. The police came and determined

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I was in a car accident. The police came and determined it was the other driver fault.
The car was hit on the side I was in. I have an underlining medical condition. This has put me under tremendous stress. I did talk to the person at fault insurance company (I video taped conversation with my computer). I told them I did seek medical attention, made a few statements about my injuries (they are not life threatening just stressful because it re-injured my ankle, my elbow, and put me under stress-I have Lupus). Also, I have been going to work on and off because it is me pushing myself because the accident did not seem that serious because we were hit at an angle. Well, now I just received some paper work to fill out about injuries. I am stressed, frustrated, and confused due to me having odd days at work and the accident was not a serious one but I do have some injuries and have had some nightmares because I saw the car coming towards us and that is all I keep remembering. I am going to seek counseling. Now that I have given you background, I just want to be fair but with this paperwork is there way I can get a consultation with a lawyer (I live in Chicago) but not sue because I don't believe that the case is that serious nor do I feel like the ratio of time and money would be worth it.
Hello and thank you for entrusting me to assist you. I am very sorry to hear about your accident and the aggravation of your underlying medical condition it has caused. Even though the impact may not have been catastrophic, that does not mean your injuries should be taken any less seriously.

Would you mind clarifying for me what your specific question is? I am happy to help you in any way that I can.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I already talked with a representative with the person at fault insurance company. They now have sent me a release of medical information. I am still dealing with stress and I don't feel as though I should fill this paperwork right now. I want to be fair and I don't want to just go and seek counsel but I would like to find a way to get a consultation in filling out paperwork but not sue because the accident does not seem that serious in my opinion which I stated during my conversation with rep.


Sorry I rabble when stressed so I just separate question out.


I live in Chicago. How can I seek counsel to consult me on paperwork but I don't want it to go further than that.

Also with my current medical conditions and bills I don't have a lot of money....

Thank you very much for your reply.

I understand your desire to avoid being litigious but there is absolutely no reason why you should not retain an attorney Don't feel as though you need to be "nice" or do the insurance company a favor--I can guarantee you, nice as the adjuster may seem, their only concern is paying you as little as they can possibly get away with. They owe a duty not to you but to their shareholders to maximize profits and minimize their botXXXXX XXXXXne.

It's certainly possible to consult with an attorney without actually being "represented," but they are going to want to charge you on an hourly basis, likely at $200-400 per hour. Why would you want to do that when you could retain an attorney on a contingency fee basis (meaning you pay nothing out of pocket but a portion of your settlement or award if you recover something) with zero risk that you will wind up indebted as a result of the representation?

Attorneys handle small cases like this all the time and there are a number of reasons why it would be substantially better if you were to obtain counsel in the present instance. For one, no attorney would have you sign the general release the insurance company has presented to you. They are not entitled to "carte blanche" to make any invasive inquiry into your medical history that they desire. But they assume you don't know that and use that to your advantage as an intimidation tactic and to obtain potentially irrelevant information that can harm your claim.

This is just one of many examples how an attorney can help you under the circumstances, and since a contingency fee attorney charges nothing up front, I see no reason why you should not obtain such representation under the present circumstances. This is especially true given the present state of your finances, as paying for an attorney up front will invariably be expensive.

In short, even though the accident may not be that serious does not mean you should not take it seriously and retain an attorney to pursue your recovery You owe nothing to the insurance company, and trust me when I say that they have no plans on doing anything more than the bear minimum they can get away with to resolve your claim. Sure, you could retain an attorney on an hourly basis to consult but not represent you, but why do that when you don't have a lot of money and can obtain an attorney on a contingency fee basis with no out of pocket expense? There's no good reason.

To locate a personal injury attorney in Illinois, the Illinois State Bar attorney referral service is a great place to start. See here:

Please do not hesitate to let me know if you have any questions or concerns regarding the above and I will be more than happy to assist you further.

If you do not require any further assistance, please be so kind as to provide a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you. Very best wishes to you and thank you so much for coming to Just Answer.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I am 24 years old. With me suing an insurance company will that effect my employment history I was told by a friend who works with the government. It will be seen as a liability especially since I seeking to go to Law school and work for the government.


Also, with the retain of counsel wouldn't that open my life just as much as the medical disclosure which I read and I am not going to sign.


Thanks for your reply.

First of all, retaining an attorney does not mean you will be filing a lawsuit, and only a lawsuit would be discoverable by a prospective employer. The majority of auto claims handled by attorneys are resolved in the "claim stage" before formal legal action ever becomes necessary.

Secondly, filing a personal injury lawsuit will have absolutely no bearing on someone's ability to secure employment. Most employers do not even run a background check that would result in the discovery of such information, and even if they did, the fact you were injured as a result of someone else's negligence and had to sue in order to obtain compensation for your injury is completely irrelevant to your value as a potential employee.

Were you bringing an employment related claim, such as one for workplace discrimination, that could conceivably have an impact on your hiring prospects because you could be seen as someone who might try to bring a similar claim against your next employer. However, a personal injury lawsuit will have absolutely no bearing on your ability to get a job, let alone would it likely even be discovered.

I can tell that you are quite averse to litigation, but you need to understand that there is nothing shameful about enforcing your legal rights when you have been harmed as a result of someone else's carelessness.

An attorney would limit the medical records you would be required to produce down to those which are relevant in assessing your accident related injuries. They would protect your privacy to the fullest extent possible, and much more so than you would be able to do on your own.

Again, please feel free to let me know if you have any further concerns. If I have answered your question, I would be very grateful for a positive rating of my service so that I may receive credit for assisting you.

Kindest regards.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your patience.


As a person who has volunteered and cares less about money I have seen how the legal system has been completely misused.


Thank you for your patience again. I truly appreciate it. I will review what is in the best interest of myself.


Have a great day.


It was truly my pleasure to assist you. I understand your feelings about the legal system, but that should not deter you from taking legal action when doing so is necessary to protect your rights.

Please let me know if I can be of any further service. If not, please be so kind as to rate my service so that I may be compensated for assisting you.

Best wishes moving forward.
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