What are the six most common mistakes people make when filing an insurance claim after an auto accident and how can you avoid them.
FAILING TO ADVISE YOUR DOCTORS IMMEDIATELY AFTER THE ACCIDENT OF ALL YOUR INJURIES
This is a common mistake that can easily be avoided. Do not wait until some later date to inform your doctors about your injuries. It gets harder to prove the accident is the actual cause of the damage the longer you wait. If you are hurt in any way in a car accident, you need a doctor to examine you for injuries right away. We don't ever tell someone to run off to the doctor if they are not really injured. But on the other hand, we often talk to people who are indeed having medical problems, but wait months before receiving any treatment. So if you are having medical issues following a wreck, get checked out by a doctor.
FAILING TO PRESERVE EVIDENCE
The moments after an accident is the time to record and keep evidence safe so you can prove the events later in a courtroom if necessary. In the world of cell phones, taking pictures and video right after an accident has never been easier to accomplish. Record your visits to the doctor's office, and keep copies of all notices, letters or bills you receive pertaining to the wreck or your injuries. Pictures of skid marks in the roadway, and the debris in the roadway, may also be important. Make sure to ask the investigating officer for the names and numbers of all witnesses. Anything you can do to help the lawyer gather evidence later could help your case in the long run.
NOT FOLLOWING THE DOCTORS INSTRUCTIONS
Missing doctor's appointments, not attending physical therapy, failing to fill prescriptions,…. Imagine standing in a court room and explaining to the judge why you didn't do what your doctor told you to. The judge or jury may decide you're responsible for your own injuries because you didn't follow medical advice that could have remedied your situation or may have added to the long term effects of your injury. It is critical to do what the doctors tell you.
NOT DISCLOSING PRIOR INJURIES AND ACCIDENTS TO YOUR HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS AND TO YOUR ATTORNEY
The lie of omission can be very damaging in a personal injury case. A judge or lawyer may begin to wonder how they can trust your claim if you have failed to disclose previous injuries. You never want to have the appearance of hiding anything. Be truthful at all times, even if you are worried what you will say might look bad.
FAILING TO DETERMINE IF YOUR HEALTH PLAN REQUIRES YOU TO REIMBURSE THE PLAN FROM PROCEEDS YOU RECOVER
It is possible that your health insurance plan may require you to reimburse the company for treatment it has already paid for if it resulted from the accident. This needs to be determined at the outset.
FAILING TO FILE SUIT WITHIN THE APPROPRIATE TIME PERIOD
Generally speaking, in Virginia you have two years to file a lawsuit after an injury. If you fail to file suit in the appropriate court within the required time period your claim will be forever barred. The longer you wait to contact an attorney after the initial accident, the harder their job may become to gather evidence and build your case.
We are here to help with your Virginia Personal Injury Case
We have over a century of combined experience helping people after an injury. If you or a loved one was injured we would love to speak with you and help you determine if you need legal counsel. This consultation is free, we are standing by for your call.