If you or somebody you care about has been struck and injured by another driver on the roadway, there are various steps that you can take both immediately following the incident and in the days and weeks that follow to help ensure that you recover fair compensation for your losses. We understand how chaotic and confusing the aftermath of any type of accent can be, but by following the majority of these steps, you will be on the right path towards ensuring your well-being.
You Need a Lawyer
Many people do not think about contacting an attorney after being injured or sustaining property damage in an accident caused by another driver. However, a skilled Santa Ana personal injury lawyer will offer a free consultation of your claim, and they can help guide you towards the best path to recovering complete compensation for your losses.
Recovering evidence to prove liability can be challenging, and going up against aggressive insurance carriers can seem impossible. An attorney will handle every aspect of the claim on your behalf, and they will likely take your case on a contingency fee basis. This means that they will handle all of the upfront costs related to the case, and you will not have to pay legal fees until after the attorney recovers the compensation you need.
You Need to be Careful With the Insurance Carriers
Insurance carriers have tactics in their back pockets they can use to limit how much compensation they pay you. Please understand that the entire goal of the insurance carrier has to pay as little as possible for your claim, so you need to be very careful when dealing with either your insurance carrier or the insurance carrier of the at-fault party.
Do not agree to give any recorded statements to the insurance carriers. If you have an attorney, you need to refer the insurance claims adjusters to your attorney for any statements. Anything you say to the insurance claims adjusters could be used against you. If your story changes at all, including any deviations from the initial accident report, the insurance claims adjuster could use this to try and say you were partially at fault for the incident.
Don’t Accept the First Settlement
The first settlement offer that comes from insurance carriers is likely going to be below what you should actually be receiving. This should be the starting point for negotiations towards a higher settlement. You and your attorney will likely need to send a demand letter to the insurance carrier stating the facts of the case and asking for full compensation for your losses. Your attorney can negotiate on her behalf throughout this process.
You Must Continue Medical Treatment
Many individuals do not think about continuing medical treatment after an accident occurs, especially if they begin to feel better. However, we strongly recommend that you go to every single doctor or medical visit scheduled in the aftermath of your vehicle accident. If you decide that you’re going to discontinue medical care, the insurance claims adjusters will take this as a sign that you may not be as injured as you claimed. Once you discontinue care, it will be much harder to receive any additional medical treatment if your injuries do end up worse and you have to go back to the doctor.