When you’re in a car accident, the last thing you want to do is make a mistake that could ruin your case. Unfortunately, many people do just that. Here are the top car accident lawyer mistakes that can ruin your case:
- Not Hiring an Experienced Lawyer
One of the biggest mistakes you can make after a car accident is not hiring an experienced lawyer. Many people try to handle their own case or use a general practice lawyer, thinking that all lawyers are the same. This could not be further from the truth. An experienced car accident lawyer will know how to deal with insurance companies, gather evidence and build a strong case on your behalf.
- Not Getting Medical Treatment
If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s important to get medical treatment right away – even if you don’t think you’re injured. Some injuries, such as whiplash, may not present themselves until days or weeks after the accident. Furthermore, insurance companies will often try to downplay the seriousness of your injuries if you don’t have medical documentation to back them up.
- Talking to the Insurance Company
It’s important to remember that the insurance company is not on your side – no matter how friendly they may seem. Their goal is to pay out as little as possible on your claim, or even deny it altogether. As such, you should never give a recorded statement to an insurance adjuster without first consulting with an personal injury lawyer Tulsa OK.
- Not Preserving Evidence
If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s important to preserve any evidence that could be used to support your claim. This includes things like photographs of the accident scene, repair estimates, medical records and more. If you wait too long to gather this evidence, it may no longer be available or it may be less convincing.
- Accepting a Quick Settlement
Another mistake to avoid after a car accident is accepting a quick settlement from the insurance company. Remember, their initial offer is almost always going to be too low. If you accept it, you may not be able to get more money later – even if your injuries turn out to be more serious than originally thought.
- Failing to Read the Fine Print
When you sign an insurance contract, it’s important to read the fine print carefully. Otherwise, you may inadvertently waive important rights or benefits. For example, some policies contain a “subrogation clause” which allows the insurance company to recover any money they paid out on your behalf from the responsible party.
- Not Hiring an Attorney in a timely manner
Another big mistake is not hiring an attorney soon enough after the accident. In many cases, it’s best to hire an attorney as soon as possible so they can begin gathering evidence and building your case. If you wait too long, important evidence may be lost or destroyed and witness memories may fade.
- Not Following Your Attorney’s Advice
Once you’ve hired an experienced car accident lawyer, it’s important to follow their advice. They have the knowledge and experience necessary to maximize the value of your claim. If you don’t follow their advice, it could jeopardize your case or result in a lower settlement.
- Trying to Handle Your Own Case
Many people try to handle their own car accident case, thinking it will be simple and straightforward. However, car accident cases are often complex and require the expertise of an experienced lawyer. If you try to handle your own case, you may make critical mistakes that could jeopardize your claim or result in a lower settlement.
- Accepting the First Settlement Offer
The insurance company will almost always make a low initial settlement offer in an attempt to save money. However, this initial offer is almost always far below what your case is actually worth. If you accept it, you may not be able to get more money later – even if your injuries turn out to be more serious than originally thought.
If you’ve been in a car accident, it’s important to avoid these mistakes if you want to maximize the value of your claim. An experienced personal injury lawyer Oklahoma will know how to deal with insurance companies, gather evidence and build a strong case on your behalf.