Mistakes with your auto insurance claim can be devastating, particularly if you have incurred steep costs for medical treatments, loss of wages, car damage, and other losses. In theory, the at-fault party's insurance company should reimburse victims appropriately after a car accident. However, in reality, insurance companies often use manipulative tactics and find excuses to deny valid claims.
The experienced car accident lawyers at Labrum Law Firm can help accident victims receive compensation for their injuries and losses, and hold the at-fault party's insurance company to account. We can prevent you from making crucial mistakes with your auto insurance claim that could leave you out of pocket. Call our legal team now for a free review of your case: (615) 338-9500.
Mistake #1 - Failing to Collect Evidence
One of the best steps you can take after suffering injuries and car damage in any kind of accident is to immediately begin with collecting evidence of your damages and losses. Not collecting sufficient evidence can be a major mistake with your auto insurance claim and provide a convenient excuse for the at-fault insurance company to deny or minimize your claim.
Ideal evidence can include multiple photographs (or video) of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, any debris on the road, and weather conditions. According to Forbes, having pictures of the accident scene can make the difference between having a claim paid or having it denied. However, any type of photographs you can provide will be useful evidence, particularly photos of your car damage and injuries.
Visiting a doctor immediately after a car accident can be crucial for your health. According to the Mayo Clinic, potentially serious injuries such as a traumatic brain injury (TBI) may not show symptoms for weeks. However, consider also that a medical report and statements showing your injuries, treatments, and costs, will be critical for proving that your injuries were a direct result of the car accident. Having this type of evidence will help you recover compensation for your injuries and expenses.
Receipts for Expenses
If you have spent hundreds of dollars on out-of-pocket expenses after an accident, including on medications, medical devices, rental car costs, and other items, make sure to keep every receipt. If you are unable to provide evidence for your expenses and losses, you will find it next to impossible to recover damages.
Mistake #2 - Providing Recorded Statements to the Insurance Company
In some cases, insurance adjusters ask individuals involved in accidents for recorded statements. While you will want to cooperate with your car insurance company, avoid providing such a recorded statement to the at-fault party's insurer. Giving a recorded statement can work to your disadvantage as your words could be misinterpreted and twisted later on. The insurance company will be looking for a reason to minimize or deny your claim and giving a recorded statement can provide them with material to use against you.
It is important to note that there is no law requiring you to give a recorded statement to the at-fault party's insurance company. Therefore, you can and should decline any such requests from the insurance adjuster. In fact, you may wish to hire an attorney for communicating and negotiating with the insurance company. This ensures that your legal rights will be protected and you do not say anything that could later be used against you and could potentially lead to a reduced settlement.
Mistake #3 - Accepting a Quick Settlement
Let us assume the at-fault party's insurance company contacts you with a settlement offer soon after an accident. The offer seems tempting, especially since you are in the middle of recovery and have a stack of medical bills waiting to be paid. Take a moment before signing or agreeing to anything. Typically, the reason why an insurer offers a quick settlement is not to do you a favor but to offer only the minimum amount to a victim. If you are still recovering from your injuries, you may not yet know what your future medical costs or income losses may be.
Generally, accepting any settlement before you have either fully recovered or achieved maximum possible recovery, can be a terrible mistake with your auto insurance claim that could leave you considerably out of pocket in the future. Once you sign on that dotted line and accept the insurer's settlement offer, you generally have no legal recourse available. Make sure to consider discussing any settlement offers with an attorney first.
Mistake #4 - Thinking You Do Not Need to Speak to an Attorney
If you have suffered severe or catastrophic injuries that could require long-term medical and rehabilitative therapies, having an attorney by your side can ensure you are not leaving any money on the table. An experienced personal injury lawyer deals with insurance companies and accident claims on a daily basis and knows how to fight for what you deserve. Without experienced and dedicated legal representation and guidance, insurance companies will often try to take advantage of victims through manipulative and deceptive tactics.
The experienced attorneys at Labrum Law Firm know how to handle insurance companies and can pursue what you need and deserve. Our first consultations are always free so you have nothing to lose by seeking legal assistance and finding out about your legal rights. We can review your accident, determine if you have a case, and let you know whether we can help you.
How Labrum Law Firm Can Help You Avoid Mistakes with Your Auto Insurance Claim
Dealing with car insurance companies while you are recovering from accident injuries can be stressful and overwhelming. Having an experienced car accident attorney from Labrum Law Firm by your side can ensure that you do not make any mistakes with your auto insurance claim and help you pursue a fair settlement. Ways in which we can help you include but are not limited to:
- Assessing the worth of your case
- Gathering evidence proving another's negligence
- Collecting and organizing evidence of your damages
- Negotiating with the at-fault party's insurance
- Filing the necessary paperwork for a personal injury case
- Representing you strongly at trial
We work on a no-win-no-fee basis, so when we take your case you do not have to worry about any upfront attorney's fees. We only get paid if and when we win your case. Consider contacting Labrum Law Firm now to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation: (615) 338-9500.