You may think that filing a claim against someone for injuries they've caused you is something that is simple and easy to do. However, if you don't retain the services of a good personal injury attorney first, there are mistakes you could make that sabotage your chances for a fair settlement. Here are some ways you could be hurting your chances without a lawyer.
You Wait to File
Because you have injuries, you might figure that you'll wait until you get better before you file any claim or suit. This could be a major mistake, because each state has a time limit for claims that you must adhere to. If you wait too long, you might no longer be eligible for a settlement. A good lawyer can ensure that you meet every deadline and do things in a timely manner.
You Don't Have Enough Proof
To make sure you prevail, you must provide proof that the person you're filing a claim against is in fact responsible for what happened to you. Without enough evidence, you may lose. Some proof you need to provide are:
- Official police report
- Medical records and past medical history
- Interviews with witnesses
- Photographs of the scene
- Photographs of injuries
When you have a strong attorney to help you, you'll be able to assemble the documents and records that you need to prove that the other person is at fault.
You Accept Preliminary Offers from an Insurance Company
If you are not used to these kinds of proceedings, you might be tempted to take the first financial offer that the other person's insurance company offers you. However, you might not know that you could receive more money than you are being offered. An attorney will be able to advise you about whether an offer should be considered or rejected outright.
Another reason not to accept the first offer you get is that even if the settlement amount sounds fair, you may not ask too many questions or study the agreement closely. You might not notice that if you accept their offer, you are no longer able to seek another settlement for additional future medical bills even if they are caused by the same incident. Having an attorney to look over possible settlements can help you avoid future problems.
Use the information laid out in this article to help you avoid the mistakes that could sabotage your personal injury claim after you have had an accident. Make sure you enlist the help of a reputable lawyer like GSJones Law Group, P.S. who can help you navigate the process so that you prevail.