The personal injury claim process is a foreign legal journey for many victims. Because there are a lot of moving parts, and because what you say and do in the aftermath of an accident can affect the outcome of your case, it is critical you get the facts about your rights and the right steps to take. At The Daspit Law Firm, our Houston personal injury lawyers place an emphasis on educating clients about how personal injury claims work, and the things they should avoid when pursuing financial compensation for their damages.
Having helped numerous car accident victims across Houston and the state of Texas, our legal team is familiar with the many common mistakes victims and families make following preventable injuries. To ensure you have the right information as you begin your legal journey, we encourage you to speak personally with a member of our legal team. Regardless of where you are at in your case, you should also be aware of the following things to avoid:
- Not notifying authorities – Interactions with law enforcement may be uncomfortable to some, but notifying the police after any type of auto accident is one of the most important things you can do after a wreck. This is because police can act as neutral third parties who respond to the scene of the accident, alert medical services if needed, and gather information for a police report that can prove invaluable during your personal injury case. These police reports can include information about what happened during the crash, as well as statements from involved parties and any witnesses. It can also protect you by ensuring that drivers don’t give you false information that leaves you without options for compensation.
- Apologizing / admitting fault – Following an accident, it is often a natural reaction to apologize say “sorry.” Although this can be a nice gesture in minor, everyday incidents, it can be something that greatly compromises a personal injury case. This is because insurance companies will be quick to point out apologies as a sign of admitting fault, and will work aggressively to use that against victims as they pursue compensation from their policyholders. Rather than apologize or discuss fault, focus on making sure emergency services are contacted and that you gather as much information as you can.
- Not getting a medical evaluation – Your health should be your number one concern after an accident. Regardless of whether you were transported to a local hospital, received treatment at the scene of an accident, or went without medical attention in the aftermath of a crash, you should be intent on scheduling a follow-up or in-depth evaluation with your doctor as soon as possible. Timely medical evaluations are essential to identifying your injuries, even if you may not feel injured or feel that you can tough it out, and to initiating the treatment you require. Timely medical treatment also protects you from insurance companies disputing that because you waited to see a doctor, you were not really hurt in a crash. This is a common tactic they employ when trying to pay victims as little as possible.
- Trusting insurance companies – There is a reason why personal injury lawyers exist; they help injured victims level the playing field with insurance companies that care more about profits than they do people. After all, insurance companies are corporations motivated by their bottom line, and they go to great lengths to minimize payouts. As such, the insurance provider of an at-fault driver may be quick to contact you and have you make statements that can be used against you (you don’t have to speak to them without first speaking to a lawyer). They may attempt to make lowball settlement offers when you are still unaware about the nature of your injuries and damages. Don’t trust that the insurance company will automatically or fairly compensate you.
- Not contacting an attorney – Working with an attorney is one of the most important things you can do after you or someone you love has been hurt in a crash. As mentioned, attorneys can level the playing field to ensure insurers don’t cut corners and to negotiate fair recoveries of all your damages. In the even that insurance companies still want to dispute or deny your claim, a lawyer has the tools, qualifications, and resources to take your case to trial. At The Daspit Law Firm, our legal team handles all communications and negotiations with insurance companies, and we go the extra mile to ensure that you have the support you need, including medical care, as you recover and navigate the journey ahead.
Educating yourself about personal injury law, your rights, and the claim process is helpful, but you still don’t know what you don’t know. As such, the most effective way to ensure you take the right steps toward justice and fair compensation is to work with proven lawyers who have your best interests in mind. Our attorneys are passionate about helping victims secure full and fair recoveries of their damages – including their pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical expenses – and we make ourselves available to help as soon as accidents happen.
If you wish to discuss a recent accident and whether you have grounds to pursue a personal injury claim, call (888) 273-1045 24/7 for a FREE consultation.