Nearly every driver will be involved in some motor vehicle accident at some point in their lifetime. Statistically speaking, most of these accidents are minor and can be resolved quickly. Unfortunately, many of these accidents will involve injuries, some of them quite severe.
There are many drivers on the road that do not follow the proper traffic laws. Distracted drivers, reckless drivers, and those under the influence of drugs or alcohol can pose a serious risk to other drivers. When their behavior causes serious injuries, those drivers should pay for the costs of all damages.
Unfortunately, getting proper compensation to cover costs and losses associated with a car accident can be a difficult and confusing process. Dealing with an insurance company can make that process even more challenging. These steps can assist in getting the compensation needed after a car accident.
If injured in an accident, the priority should be to get medical care. However, if the injured party is able, some initial investigation of the scene could be beneficial. Some details from Uvalle Law Firm can help individuals understand the information needed for a personal injury case.
The first bit of information that should be gathered is the personal details of the other driver involved in the accident. This should include their name, address, and contact information. Individuals should also collect their registration and insurance information at the scene. If possible, their license plate number should also be noted.
Pictures should also be taken at the accident scene whenever possible. These pictures should include damage done to all vehicles involved in the accident. Pictures of the area where the accident took place, including any intersections or hazards in the road, can be very helpful when filing a claim.
If there are any witnesses at the scene, it is a good idea to get their contact information. They could be very beneficial in the claims process. If there are businesses nearby, checking to see if they have security cameras that may have caught the accident could also be a big help.
Get Medical Care
It is important to get medical care as soon as possible after an automobile accident. Even if the individual feels fine or thinks the injury is minor, it is a good idea to get checked out by a medical professional to ensure there are no serious problems.
Some injuries from a car accident may not present themselves immediately after an accident. This makes it important for anyone that has been in an accident, to seek medical care at the first sign of a problem, even if it is days after the accident.
For example, there is a condition referred to as seat belt syndrome. Seat belt syndrome refers to internal injuries caused by the seat belt during a car accident. These injuries may not be apparent for 24-72 hours after an accident.
It is also important to get medical care in a timely manner to ensure the insurance company will cover the costs of medical care. A reasonable amount of time to get medical care is considered to be 72 hours after the accident has occurred.
After this time frame, insurance companies may use this to deny or reduce the injury claim amount. It is also important to attend all medical appointments. Any gaps in care could pose risks to having all medical costs covered by the insurance company.
Contact Insurance Company
The injured party should also contact their insurance provider. This allows them the ability to begin the claims process. The insurance agent will gather basic information about the accident. They can also inform the individual of the steps they need to take next to process the claim.
Often, it will be the other party’s insurance company that pays the costs of the injuries from the accident. At some point, a statement will need to be made with the other insurance provider for them to process the claim. An attorney may be beneficial before proceeding with this part of the process.
If the individual decides to make their statement to the other insurance company without the assistance of an attorney, it is important to stick to the facts of the accident. Do not provide additional information or give guesses about what may have happened. It is also important to never lie.
Anything said during this statement will be used for processing the claim. The insurance company will investigate the accident. If any information is a lie or is a guess, it could compromise the case and make it more difficult to get the right compensation.
It is also important not to accept a settlement without it being reviewed by an attorney. An insurance company will try to close the case quickly and with as low of a settlement as possible. If that settlement is less than what the medical costs end up being, there will be no recourse for getting further compensation.
Contact an Attorney
Before dealing with the other insurance company, or even before dealing with one’s own insurance company, it may be a good idea to consult an attorney. An attorney can provide helpful information that can protect the rights of the injured party.
Most attorneys offer free consultations. This allows a person to visit with an attorney or even several attorneys before committing to hiring one. During the consultation, the attorney can provide information about the process and help determine the value of the case.
Affordability should not be an issue or prevent anyone from getting an attorney after an accident. This is why many accident attorneys offer no fees unless they win the case. Things are already difficult enough without having to worry about paying an attorney.
How an Attorney Can Help
An attorney can help in many ways. They can provide a step by step description of the entire claims process and help with each one. They can even help contact the insurance company to ensure the initial contact and even the statement is clear and proper.
The attorney can assist with investigating the accident and contacting witnesses. This can allow the injured person time to focus on their healing. The attorney can even hire experts to reconstruct the accident if necessary.
An attorney can also assist with gathering any medical documents or other materials needed for the case. The attorney can even begin legal proceedings if a fair settlement cannot be reached with the insurance company.
An attorney is an injured person’s best weapon against the confusing and difficult process of getting compensation for a car accident injury. They will help protect the injured person’s rights and fight hard to get fair compensation for their injuries.