If you have been injured as a result of the carelessness or negligence of somebody else, you have every right to seek compensation for your damages. You must, however, act quickly and responsibly. You don’t want important evidence to disappear, memories to get fuzzy, or critical witnesses to relocate a thousand miles away. Here is what you need to do to exercise and preserve your rights and protect your case.
Seek Immediate Medical Care
You should act promptly to receive care for any pain that you experience after an accident. Sometimes an injury will worsen in the 24-48 hours after an accident. Do not shrug off this pain, as it will only worsen if you do not promptly seek treatment.
Furthermore, seeking treatment immediately allows you to demonstrate that the injuries were caused by the accident and not by some other incident or medical condition. If the police are dispatched to an accident scene, you will be asked if you want paramedics dispatched too. Don’t hesitate to answer in the affirmative if you feel that you need them.
Whether you’re seen at an emergency room or at your private physician’s office, you’ll be given treatment instructions. Follow them. If you’re referred to an orthopedist or a neurologist, make that appointment for as soon as possible. If diagnostics or physical therapy are ordered, contact the clinic right away to arrange for an appointment. It’s critical for you to attend every appointment that you have scheduled. Ignoring your physician’s instructions or missing appointments will give insurance adjusters (and their defense attorneys) the opportunity to argue that you weren’t hurt as bad as you claim.
Place every piece of paper that you receive involving your care and treatment in a file or large envelope. Make sure that your attorney gets these. Although your attorney will obtain bills and medical records directly from your provider, there might be important paperwork that he or she didn’t know exists. Periodically supplement your attorney with everything that you receive. Doing so is important for purposes of documenting your damages.
If you make a claim with the opposing insurance company, they will undoubtedly look at all of your social media accounts for evidence they can use against you. Refrain from saying anything at all about your accident, injuries, or treatment. What you think might be innocent remarks or photos can be used against you in the future to attack your credibility. The other side will be monitoring your social media accounts throughout the pendency of your case so the less you post, the better.
Decline to Give any Statements to the Other Side
Occasionally the opposing insurer’s adjuster assigned to your claim will contact you directly to request a statement about the accident and your injuries. Always remember, however, that the opposing insurance company is not your friend and is not looking out for your best interests. Typically the insurance company wants the statement so they may use it against you in the future. As a result, it is strongly advised that you politely refuse to give any kind of a statement to the other side’s insurance company without an attorney being present on your behalf.
Do you have concerns about an accident or personal injury? The Law Offices of Robert L Hill, APC is here to help. If you are in the Carlsbad, California area and are in need of legal advice from an experience personal injury attorney, contact us today 760-448-4425. The cost of proceeding alone may be more than you could have ever imagined.