After a car accident, most people don’t know how to react or what to do, and that affects the amount of settlement you get for your damages. While you might have a rough idea of what to do after an auto accident, it is also vital to understand what not to do. Some of these common errors cost lots of money; when accidents affect your physical health, you will spend a lot of money going to doctors and specialists, making it hard to recover from such a financial backlash regarding medical bills.
It is understandable that after a car accident, things are a mess, and a thousand things are running through your head, so it is easy to make mistakes. You have a right to settlement in the event of a vehicle accident for any damages, but there are steps to follow to get the compensation, and if you mess up and say the wrong thing, you might get less or no settlement at all.
Here are ten things that you should not do.
- Failing To Involve The Police
Sometimes it seems unnecessary to call 911 after a crash, especially when no one is hurt, but whatever the case, never fail to involve the police. Legally in many states, it is a requirement to call the police. They may also help provide valuable evidence that may prevent the other driver from making false claims. The police will determine if there are any violations at the scene of the accident. They also make arrests if the driver involved is at fault. The bottom line is the police can help, especially if there is a lawsuit.
- Admitting Fault
Admitting guilt is one of the biggest mistakes you can make unknowingly. However much you talk to people, the other drivers, victims, and the police never admit to being guilty of the car crash. This will hurt your chances of getting the compensation you deserve. You have to wait until the investigations are finished, and you have a clear picture of what happened. Here are some comments that you should avoid saying “I am very sorry”, “I didn’t see you” “I only looked away for a second”. These comments look harmless, but insurance companies can use them against you.
- Never Ignore Or Underate Your Injuries
You need to seek medical attention after a car accident; immediate hospitalization is vital for severe cases. Most car accident victims may fail to go to the hospital because they feel like it is just scratches, bruises and soreness; they forget that some injuries develop slowly. Some symptoms like confusion, dizziness and fogginess are associated with the stress of the crash, but it can also be a sign of concussion or brain injury. Don’t say you’re okay unless the doctor clears you. Miscalculating your injuries can hurt you in the following ways; the insurance may doubt your claim if you do it later when the symptoms are bad, and the road to recovery will be difficult and prolonged.
- Failure To Gather Evidence
Please get all the information related to the accident to protect your case. If you’re not seriously hurt, take pictures of the wreck, the scene and your injuries. Also, document the other driver’s contact information and witnesses on the scene. Doing this will give your attorney a head-start when handling your case.
- Never Trust The Insurance Company
Remember that insurance is business, and they may want to save much money as they can. Insurance adjusters don’t work for you but for the company, and sometimes they may take advantage of your vulnerability to get information that can limit the money they give you. Don’t talk about injuries or guilt or provide any statement. Your only job is to inform the insurance company about the accident and give them basic details. You can usually submit the relevant paperwork and accident claim form by email or on the insurers website. If they want further information, it would be better if you referred them to a lawyer.
- Failure To Understand Your Rights
Many crash victims don’t know what they are supposed to do after an accident, some may feel it is too much effort and time to file a claim, and they may decide to walk away and shoulder everything. They are unaware of the damages and expenses to file a claim and get compensation. It is your right to claim lost wages, medical bills, and property bills and for physical and emotional pain and suffering after a car accident. You also need to be aware of the state laws; if not, hire an attorney who will inform you if you can sue the other party for property damages, they can also notify you if the other party can sue you.
- Failing To Contact A Car Crash Lawyer
It is essential to contact a personal injury lawyer if you or the other driver were injured. They will help you understand your rights and your next steps. Dealing with legal issues after an accident is the last thing you want to do, so having an able personal injury lawyer will give you a chance to focus on your health while they worry about your finances.
- Never Agree To A Settlement Too Quickly
You are probably tired and want to put the ordeal behind you; an insurance company may approach you with a certain amount of money and tell you they are helping. Don’t fall for their antics, it may seem like a good deal, but they are looking out for themselves. Sometimes you may have experienced severe trauma treatment that requires more money, and since you took the settlement, the burden is now yours to shoulder.
- Failure To Exchange Insurance Information
Always strive to exchange insurance information despite how minor the car crash may seem, whether the minimal to no damage and everyone got away unscathed; you never know what could happen later. Take the address, name, phone number, license plate number, model of the car, insurance information and license number.
- Taking too long to make a claim
After a car accident, you only have two years to make a claim.
So, take as little time to file your claim and do this with someone; contact a car attorney to help you with the process.
These errors are easy to make, especially if you’re out of sorts after an accident, so getting yourself a car attorney who will help you along the way is necessary. The chances of getting a fair settlement will be higher if you have a lawyer than when you’re alone. Ask questions when the investigation is ongoing so that you understand what is going on. Ultimately, knowing how to handle yourself can also be a bonus.