To avoid making costly errors, it's important to understand some of the common mistakes people make when filing a personal injury claim so you can avoid them. Here are five of the most common to avoid when filing a personal injury claim:
Leaving the Scene of the Accident
Under no circumstance is it a good idea to leave the scene of an accident if you are involved in one. Even if you think your injuries are minor, it's best to stay and file a police report so that all parties involved can be identified and held accountable for their actions.
The term "hit and run" is used to describe a situation where someone leaves the scene of an accident, and it can have serious consequences. In most cases, you can be tried and convicted of a crime and face civil penalties from any injured parties.
Even if the other party decides to leave the scene, you should still remain until the police arrive. Gather as much evidence as possible, such as pictures of the scene and contact information for any potential witnesses.
Giving Your Insurance Company an Official Statement
Never give your insurance company an official statement without first consulting a personal injury attorney. Your insurance company may use the statement to reduce or deny your claim, so it's best to speak with a lawyer before making any statements.
You should also be aware that insurers often record phone conversations, meaning your words can be used against you. Refrain from making any statements or signing any documents without a lawyer present.
Skipping Medical Treatment
If you've been injured in an accident, seeking medical treatment is vital. Even if your injuries seem minor during the accident, they can worsen over time and require more extensive care, such as surgery or physical rehabilitation. Medical care after an accident may include an ambulance ride, a hospital visit, or even a doctor's appointment in the days after the accident.
Some people fear that seeking medical attention after an accident will cost them an arm and a leg, but this is not the case. An experienced lawyer can get you reimbursed for your medical costs after the settlement has been reached. Plus, you're much more likely to save your arms and legs if you treat your injury right away.
Not Filing in the Required Time
Most states have a time limit for filing a personal injury claim. This is known as the "statute of limitations," and it varies from state to state. It's important to file your claim within this time frame to be eligible for compensation. In Tennessee, the statute of limitations is one year.
If you fail to file your claim in time, you may be barred from recovering any compensation for your injuries.
Not Hiring a Lawyer
Finally, many folks take it upon themselves to handle their personal injury claim without the help of a lawyer. While it's possible to win your case without legal representation, you may not get the full amount of compensation that you are entitled to.
If you don't have any experience in personal injury law, it's in your best interest to hire an experienced lawyer who knows the ins and outs of the legal system.
After all, you may not know the best practices for handling negotiations, deadlines, and legal technicalities. A lawyer can help guide you through the entire process, negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, and ensure all your documents are in order.
Let Bart Durham Injury Law Help You
Don't hesitate to contact Bart Durham Injury Law if you've been in an accident and need help filing a personal injury claim. Our experienced attorneys will guide you throughout the entire process so that you can get the compensation you deserve.
With years of experience, we are dedicated to achieving optimal results for our clients. We understand how challenging it can be to face the aftermath of an accident, which is why we are here to help.