An auto accident, whether big or small, can have a huge impact on your life. What to do after an accident can be confusing and most people are not familiar with their rights as a victim. Insurance companies will likely contact injured parties to take statements, obtain releases, and possibly offer small settlements. Unfortunately, the insurance company is usually not there to help you. Some items to keep in mind are as follows:
- If the insurance company makes a settlement offer, it is not necessarily their final offer and is not necessarily a fair offer. If you are dealing with an insurance adjuster, they often make statements such as “that is the best I can do” or “I can only cover half your medical bills.” Often, they are trying to get you to accept a low-ball offer and to increase their bottom line.
- If you are still in pain and/or are still seeking medical treatment from the injuries suffered in your auto accident, it is ordinarily not advisable to settle your case. Insurance adjusters may rush you to try to settle, but you have two years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit. If the statute of limitations is not about to expire, do not settle your case until you know the extent of your injuries.
- If you are injured, say you are injured. If you need medical treatment, seek medical treatment. Sometimes clients are embarrassed by the extent if their injuries or may delay or avoid treatment hoping that their pain will subside. Failing to seek the medical treatment you need or delaying seeking the treatment you need will harm your case.
- Report the accident to the police and take photographs. Occasionally, the driver at fault will try to dissuade the injured party from reporting the accident to the police. However, if you are injured, the police report and photographs you take create important pieces of evidence that will support your case.
- Once the police arrive at the scene, tell the truth. Your statements made to the police after the accident matter and can be used for or against you. If the other driver was at fault for the accident, say so.
If you have been in an auto accident and have questions or feel that you need representation, contact Marsalka Law.
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