What should I NOT do if injured in an accident?
If you’re injured in a car accident or a slip and fall accident, you are likely dazed and a bit confused. This can lead to mistakes unless you’re aware of the fact that they are mistakes in the first place. These are some common mistakes people make after an accident.
Don’t Admit Fault
Your first instinct may be to exit the car and apologize while taking the blame. If you slip and fall, you might say that you should have watched where you were going. These statements can be incredibly damaging to your case down the road. It might not even be true either. The insurance company’s investigators as well as a lawyer’s investigators could find that it wasn’t your fault at all. Your declaration of blame will be repeated by the other driver or property owner as well as the insurance company, which can be a detrimental to your case.
Call the Police
Minor accidents need to be reported to the police. While they might not always send out a cruiser to the scene, you’ll need a record of the accident for the insurance company. The other driver might beg, plead and offer to cover damages. Accidents should always be reported because it needs to be documented properly.
Don’t Refuse an Ambulance
At the scene of the accident, make sure to take an ambulance to the hospital if you have been injured. If there’s any chance you might have been injured, it’s vital that you seek immediate medical attention.
Accident victims can be in shock and adrenaline will mask the pain. Victims who have been injured will find that the pain doesn’t alert them to serious injury for hours or even the next day.
Never Say These Phrases
Along with not admitting fault, you should never say, “I’m fine” or “I’m okay” after an accident. While you might feel like you’re not seriously injured, the pain can make itself known hours later. While injuries might not feel severe at first, they can be serious in the future.
Eventually, they can limit your ability to work or enjoy your favorite hobbies. With those phrases, you’ve limited your ability to seek compensation from the insurance company.
You should never wait for medical treatment after an accident, and you shouldn’t wait to speak to an attorney either. There’s a time limit for you to take action after an accident. This legal limit is called a statute of limitations. You don’t need to wait until you’re healed to seek compensation for your injuries. It could take months or years to feel at your best again.
If you wait too long to consult with an personal injury lawyer, you will not have the right documentation started. The attorney will be at a disadvantage because he or she won’t have everything needed as it happens. Evidence from the accident could have disappeared in that time too.
Never Trust the Insurance Company
Whether it’s your insurance company or the other driver’s company, you should limit the information you give them. You’ll be inclined to give information to your own insurance company, but you should be careful about that too.
Both companies will call you, and you should give them basic information in answer to their questions. Never agree to give a recorded statement or talk about who was at fault. That will only help the insurance company working against you.
Don’t Accept a Fast Settlement
You might be tempted to take any money offered by the insurance company especially if you have bills or missed out on work due to an injury. Unfortunately, the insurance company knows that you’re likely to accept quick settlement amounts when you don’t have an personal injury attorney working for you. Your attorney won’t let you accept quick compensation that isn’t in line with your injuries as well as your pain and suffering.
Try to avoid any of these mistakes after an accident, but don’t be too upset if you made a few. The next step in the process is to hire an attorney, tell that attorney all your details even the mistakes and take his or her advice for the next steps in the process.