Auto accidents are somewhat unavoidable. If you’re constantly on the road, you may find yourself involved in one, whether due to your own actions, or another person’s negligence. Of course, your first concern should be your health, after which you should pursue compensation from the person(s) at fault for the accident. As you proceed with your personal injury suit, you need to avoid the following mistakes if you intend to achieve a favorable outcome:
Failing to File a Police Report
In Florida, the law requires everyone involved in an accident that leads to death or injuries to file a police report within the shortest time possible. A police report will essentially give important details of the crash, including the main culprits, and the injuries suffered. This can help you prove to a judge that you were indeed a victim, and thereby deserve compensation.
Delaying to Seek Medical Attention
You may be tempted to put off a visit to the doctor until you’re sure that you suffered serious injuries. However, waiting too long to seek medical treatment and a doctor’s report could prove costly, as you would have no way to prove that your injuries were actually caused by the accident.
Taking Too Long to File a Claim
Basically, the longer you wait to file a claim, the harder it will be to prove your case. In Florida, you have to file a personal injury claim within 4 years of an accident in order to have any chance of compensation.
Ignoring Your Doctor’s Order
Failure to observe your doctor’s instructions may make it hard to prove your injuries in court. For instance, if your doctor instructs you to rest for several months, but you stubbornly return to work earlier, the other driver’s insurance company may claim that your injuries were not that serious.
Accepting the Initial Offer From The Insurance Company
Insurance companies don’t favor making large payouts, and will often try to negotiate with litigants out of court. The more cunning ones will try to capitalize on your obvious need for cash by offering you an initial “settlement,” which is often much less than what you’d get in court. Accepting the cash offered effectively waivers your rights of seeking legal redress in the future, which will negate the whole point of you filing a claim. Ideally, you should never try to settle out of court, unless the settlement is satisfactory. Alternatively, let an auto accident injury attorney handle all deals with the other side on your behalf.
Recording a Statement for The Adverse Adjuster
If you’re naive on matters law, you may find yourself inadvertently giving a recorded statement to the insurance adjuster representing the defendant. If possible, avoid doing that, as whatever you disclose may be used against you in court. If the negligent person’s insurer or attorney asks you to record a statement, ask them to contact your attorney first.
While there’s not much you can possibly do to stop an auto accident, there are quite a few things you should not do if you get involved in a crash. Hopefully, you’re now better informed on these potentially costly mistakes.