Things to Avoid When Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Getting hurt or injured can have serious effects on our lives.
11:23 08 February 2021
They can cause physical disabilities, missing time from work, failing to pay the bills, and extra expenses. When it’s someone else’s fault, you are eligible for a personal injury claim.
Unfortunately, some people waste their rights by making mistakes that can cost them the compensation they deserve. To avoid those mistakes, the first step is to identify them, and the following are some of the major mistakes people tend to make.
Not Hiring A Lawyer
Usually, lawyers get their fees up-front, however, that’s not the case with personal injury lawyers. They charge a contingency fee which means they collect their fees when they reach a settlement in your case. They only take a small percentage of your settlement, and they may be the difference between a small settlement and a big one.
Waiting for Too Long to File
The recovery from a serious injury can take months, and in serious cases years, and some people make the mistake of waiting till the recovery ends to file their claim. Check your state’s statute of limitations as it specifies the window of time allowed for you to file your claim after the accident. To avoid this mistake, hire a lawyer as soon as possible to start your claim procedures.
No matter how much time you invested in researching personal injury claims, the truth is insurance company lawyers know insurance law better than anyone else. By representing yourself, you may make procedural mistakes that will dismiss your case, or in the best case, get compensation less than you actually deserve. A lawyer will protect your interests and is familiar with all the tricks during the process.
Accepting The First Offer From The Other Party
Insurance companies want to get over with claims as soon as possible to cut their costs, and they usually offer compensation that is less than what it should be. This has been the practice in most places in the United States, like Virginia. Accepting the first offer can cause you to forfeit your rights, so Hopewell personal injury lawyers suggest that you consult your lawyer before signing any papers. Most of the time, rejecting the first offer will bring a better offer your way.
Not Getting Medical Attention
You should always seek medical attention to make sure there won’t be any complications. Even if the injury wasn’t apparent at the time of the accident, it doesn’t mean it’s not there. If some injuries surfaced after filing for an injury claim, you can’t be compensated for them. Additionally, your injuries are documented when you seek immediate medical attention, and that’s vital evidence in your claim.
Discussing Your Injuries with Others
Don’t discuss your injuries with anyone. This starts from the moment of the accident till the end of the claim process. This can’t be stressed enough, any word you say can be twisted to deny you the compensation you deserve. Especially when dealing with insurance company representatives, make sure that your attorney is present to guide you through what can and can’t be said. You can give information about your injuries to law enforcement or medical staff but don’t exaggerate or lie about the injuries as this can dismiss your case.
Sharing Injuries on Social Media
Social media helps you connect with family and friends, sharing all your news and stories. However, abstain from sharing your injuries on social media, as any word or picture you share may be used against you. Stay on the safe side and don’t share anything on social media as insurance adjusters try to find any information on your social media to harm your case.
Not Gathering Evidence
Cases are won and lost based on gathered evidence, and the same concept applies to personal injury claims. That’s why it’s important to seek medical attention as it’s one of the pieces of evidence.
The most essential evidence you can find is establishing the negligence of the other party or their failure to exercise care for your safety. Your claim is as strong as the evidence you provide, so gather strong enough evidence to make your case viable.
Concealing Information from Your Attorney
Whether bad or good information, don’t keep any information to yourself regarding the claim. Your lawyer must be aware of everything happening in the case to prepare themselves for any situations. Concealing a piece of vital information from them will put them on the back foot when they get surprised by it from someone else.
Keep in mind that personal injury claims can take a long time to settle, so don’t lose patience or faith in getting your rights back. The key factor is to hire an experienced lawyer or law firm to represent you and ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Don’t forget to document every step from the day of injury to the settlement day with your attorney by your side.