Below are the most common mistakes you can make after a car accident to hurt your claim. Don’t allow these mistakes to decrease the amount of money you can receive for your car accident claim.
Number 1: Saying Way Too Much
The hours and days after a motor vehicle accident can be chaotic. Dealing with law enforcement officers, tow truck drivers, hospitals, doctors, auto repair shops, and your job can be confusing and overwhelming. It seems like everyone wants to speak with you, including the insurance adjuster for the other driver. Unfortunately, something you say can hurt your claim, even if you don’t mean it the way it sounds or it is a completely innocent statement. For example, saying “I’m sorry” can be construed as an admission of fault. Saying “I was running late” may be taken as you were speeding and reckless because you were in a hurry.
It is crucial that you avoid speaking about the accident, especially to the insurance adjuster, until you consult with a New Orleans car accident lawyer.
Number 2: Failing to Seek Medical Attention
You may “fee okay” after a motor vehicle accident, but you could be suffering from a severe injury. Many people put off seeking medical attention because they don’t think the injuries are substantial, they don’t want to go to the hospital, or the stress of the accident creates confusion that prevents the person from thinking clearly. However, it is very important for your health and your claim to see a doctor as soon as possible after your accident.
In addition to jeopardizing your health, delaying medical care could hurt your claim. The other party will argue that your delay in seeking medical care was because you were not really hurt and you are now exaggerating your injury.
Number 3: Social Media
Using social media can hurt your ability to recover full compensation for your injuries and losses. It may be tempting to use your Facebook or Twitter accounts to vent about a negligent driver or to keep family and friends updated on your condition. Don’t give into the temptation. What you post may end up in the hands of the defense attorney through a subpoena or possibly just an online search. What you put on social media is highly susceptible to misinterpretation by a jury. It is best to stay off social media until your case is settled or closed.
Number 4: Settling Your Claim Early
The insurance adjuster for the other party may try to settle the claim very quickly, especially if the adjuster suspects your claim will be substantial. If you accept a settlement, you are bound to the terms of that settlement which WILL state you release all parties from any further claims. In other words, the amount you receive is all the money you will ever receive for the claim. Even if you realize later that your injury resulted in a permanent disability, you cannot go back to the insurance company or any other party related to the accident for more money.
It is not in your best interest to accept a settlement without consulting with a NoLA accident attorney. The adjuster will take advantage of your need for funds to get you to settle for less money than your claim is worth. Don’t fall for it.
Number 5: Not Talking to an Attorney
It’s free to meet with one of our New Orleans car accident attorneys to discuss your case. You don’t pay any attorney fees until we win your case. You have nothing to lose by consulting with an attorney, so why not protect your rights and learn about your legal options before making any decisions. The insurance company has a team of lawyers protecting it. Don’t you deserve a team of attorneys and legal professionals on your side protecting your best interest?
Call our New Orleans Accident Attorney
Contact Attorney Fred Olinde of The Olinde Firm by calling (504) 587-1440 or 1-800-587-1889 to request a free consultation with a New Orleans accident attorney.