What Are the Things That Hurt the Value of Your Car Accident Claim?
Car accidents are indeed the leading cause of personal injuries as well as preventable deaths in the U.S. Being in a car accident could involve anything from a minor inconvenience to a drastically life-changing occurrence. An accident could also cause you financial turmoil due to the accumulating medical bills and missed work.
It is, unfortunately, a great mistake to believe that an insurance company, either yours or the other driver’s, has your best interest at heart. As a matter of fact, insurance companies do whatever they legally can to reduce and/or delay payments to their clients. It is, for this reason, that car accident victims have to depend on competent car accident lawyers to obtain the compensation that they are entitled to. Car accident lawyers will look into your case and fight tooth and nail to ensure that your legal rights are protected and that you are fairly treated.
If you are involved in a car crash, there are several things that you ought to know. You should ensure that you do and do not do certain things, as these particular things could be held against you in your car accident claim. Below is a list of things that you ought to aware of as they can hurt your chances to obtain the full compensation that you deserve:
- Not contacting the police and failing to get a copy of the police report
The police report could be a vital piece of evidence during the accident claim process. The police report contains actual details on how the crash happened and not obtaining it just the gives the party at fault an opportunity to alter their story. It is for this reason that you should not allow the other driver to talk you out of contacting the police.
- Failure to exchange insurance information
In spite of how minor an accident might seem, not exchanging insurance information and other personal information such as the name, cell phone number, address, and license number of the other driver is a huge mistake. Additionally, if the car is registered to a different individual, getting the owner’s name, address, and cell phone number is crucial as well.
- Not collecting witness information
In addition to the police report, witnesses provide unbiased versions of what actually took place and thus act as an important source of evidence in accident claims. For this reason, it is crucial to seek out witnesses and obtain their contact information and statement. You might need them to testify on your behalf during a deposition or even at trial.
- Not taking pictures of the accident scene and your injuries
Nowadays, almost everyone has a smartphone with a camera. Taking photographs of everything at the scene of the accident, such as vehicle damages and injuries, will go a long way in establishing your claim. The right photograph could be the difference between getting a middling settlement and a great settlement.
- Not seeking immediate medical attention
It is crucial to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Some injuries do not immediately make themselves apparent, and you may not realize you have sustained serious injuries due to shock. Do not assume that you are not injured just because you do not feel any pain right away. Visit a doctor as soon you leave the accident scene; your health should be your first priority.
- Not keeping records
The insurance company is certainly not going to take your word for anything. In order to recover the lost wages and medical bills that were incurred as a result of the accident, you are going to have to prove every dollar you claim to have lost. Ensure that all records of your medical bills, lost wages or any other expenses incurred as a result of the crash are kept.
- Waiting for too long before contacting a car accident lawyer
Putting together an injury case actually takes time, and most states set a limited window in which one is allowed to pursue a claim after an accident. The more you wait to speak to a lawyer, the less time he/she will have to look into your case.
In order to get the highest possible compensation, avoid committing the mistakes above. Do not hesitate to contact Wilshire Law Firm at (800) 522-7274 if you are ever in need of a personal injury attorney.