Car accidents happen every day, and no matter how careful you are, you can’t always prevent them. Defensive driving can significantly reduce the risk of avoidable accidents. However, you can’t prevent accidents caused by adverse weather conditions, reckless driving by other motorists, and mechanical failure.
If you have been in an accident, follow these tips to maximize your car accident settlement.
Seek Medical Attention Immediately
Seek medical attention as soon after a car accident as you can. Even if you feel fine, you might have injuries with hidden symptoms. Seeing a doctor immediately will ensure that your injuries are properly documented, which is essential for settlement. Some injuries demand ongoing medical treatment, so you need to start with that immediately. If you don’t report an injury right after the accident, there are minimal chances of receiving compensation.
Document the accident as thoroughly as possible. Take photos of the scene, including the vehicles involved and any damage sustained. You should also document your injuries and damage to your personal property. Get contact information from any witnesses and the other driver. Having this information will help you build a stronger case.
Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
Hiring experienced car accident attorneys like Dennis Hernandez is essential to maximize your settlement. An attorney can help you navigate the legal process. They ensure that you receive fair compensation for your damages. They can also handle negotiations with the insurance company on your behalf, freeing you up to focus on your recovery.
Insurance companies may ask you to sign documents or release forms that could limit your ability to receive compensation. Consult with your attorney before signing anything. They’ll make sure your rights are protected. Your attorney can review all documents and advise you on whether signing them is in your best interest.
Don’t Admit Fault or Settle Quickly
Admitting fault can negatively impact your settlement. Even if you believe that you were partially or entirely at fault, don’t say it. You may not be aware of some factors, so let the evidence speak for itself. If you admit fault, the insurance company may use that as leverage to offer you a lower settlement.
Insurance companies may offer a quick settlement hoping you will accept it before realizing the full extent of your damages. Before accepting any settlement offer, consult with your attorney. They’ll ensure you’re not being short-changed. You may be entitled to more compensation than the insurance company is offering, especially if you have ongoing medical expenses or lost wages.
Track Your Expenses
You may incur various expenses after an accident. You’ll typically need to pay your medical bills, car repairs, and lost wages. Track all of these expenses, as they may be reimbursed. Document any other expenses related to the accident. They may include transportation costs or home care expenses.
After documenting your current expenses, consider future expenses that may arise from the accident. For example, if you sustained a permanent injury, you may require assistance with daily activities. Consider future expenses when negotiating your settlement.
You need to be patient during the settlement process. Rushing things could lead to a lower settlement offer. The insurance company may use your eagerness to settle as leverage to offer you less.
Your attorney will help build a strong case and negotiate a fair settlement. However, reaching an agreement could take a while. While patience is essential, you should know the statute of limitations. It is the time you have to file a lawsuit after an accident. In most states, it is two to three years. File before the deadline expires.
Being in a car accident is traumatic. However, by following these tips, you can maximize your car accident settlement and receive fair compensation. With proper guidance and support, you can navigate the legal process smoothly.