Five Common Virginia Car Crash Mistakes
Your life is turned upside down when you are hurt in a car accident in Virginia. The victims of wrecks are often very vulnerable. They frequently do and say things that harm their case against the at-fault driver. Common Virginia car crash mistakes can be devastating.
Mistakes may ruin your case. Even if they are less severe, they could knock a few thousand dollars off your eventual settlement and what you deserve. You should be careful about what you do or say in the wake of a car crash.
Here are five common Virginia car crash mistakes that can harm your case.
1 Saying the Wrong Thing at a Crash Scene.
It’s very easy to say the wrong thing at an accident scene. Tempers run high and people may not be thinking clearly if they have been hurt and their cars have been damaged. Never make rash statements such as admitting liability. Often people hurt in auto accidents do not have a clear picture of what happened. They may wrongly think they were liable. Stick to a factual account as you saw it and don’t try to apportion blame or give opinions.
2 Discounting or Delaying Medical Treatment
Some auto accident victims just want to get on with their lives. They tell the medics they are fine at the accident scene and don’t see a doctor. Often the symptoms of a car accident linked injury won’t set in for a day or two. It is prudent to get checked out by your doctor. Not only will this avoid complications, but it will not give the other side’s insurance company the opportunity to downplay your injuries in a future lawsuit.
3 Taking on the Insurance Company Alone
The insurance adjuster for the other side is not your friend. He or she may tell you, you don’t need a personal injury lawyer. The adjuster may seem polite and helpful. However, the first duty of the adjuster is to the insurance company’s bottom line. He will try to settle a case fast and for as little money as possible. The adjuster wants to avoid the filing of a lawsuit.
Hiring a Virginia personal injury lawyer can result in an insurance company taking your case more seriously. An attorney will advise you when an insurance company is offering you less than your case deserves. The differential between what an insurer is willing to offer and what your case is worth is typically higher when injuries are more serious. In these cases, you should always hire an injury lawyer.
Recently, Lawyers.com reported people with legal representation average of $77,600 in compensation, compared to $17,600 for people who take on the insurance company alone.
4 Failing to Document Facts
From the moment you are injured, you should document everything. Try to get statements at the accident scene. Get pictures and videos on your cell phone. Keep all medical notes and bills and keep a record of every conversation you have with insurance companies. Make sure you have an accurate note of relevant dates. Even if you do not hire an attorney initially, you may hire one later. Accurate notes will be helpful to your case.
If you fail to document, lose paperwork and miss out important facts, you may be seen as unreliable and lose important information that supports your case.
5 Running Out of Time to File a Lawsuit
Under Virginia law, you have two years to bring a personal injury claim. This seems like a long time, but it goes quickly. If the statute of limitations period is exhausted, you will lose the opportunity to win compensation for your injuries. You should avoid waiting too long to file a lawsuit because it can be more difficult to find witnesses and their recollections of the accident are less clear.
Don’t let common Virginia car crash mistakes ruin your case against the driver who injured you. If you or a loved one has been hurt on the roads of Virginia Beach or another city or county in the Commonwealth of Virginia, you have rights. Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers is a fast-growing personal injury law firm based in Hampton Roads. We can advise you of all aspects of your case at a free consultation. Call us today at (757) 455-0077.