About 10% of the world’s deaths occur due to severe injuries. Even if you survived an accident, injuries could put you out of work. A severe injury might cause a disability or impact your quality of life, too.
If you were recently injured due to someone else’s negligence, don’t hesitate to file a personal injury claim. You can fight for the compensation you deserve.
In the meantime, make sure to avoid these costly mistakes. Making these mistakes when filing a personal injury claim could hurt your lawsuit. You might not receive the compensation you’re due as a result.
Keep reading to discover how to file personal injury claims without making costly mistakes today.
1. Thinking You Can’t Afford a Lawyer
One of the biggest mistakes you can make when filing a personal injury claim is thinking you have to go through it alone. You might think you can’t afford a lawyer. In most cases, however, that’s not the case.
In fact, many lawyers work on a contingency fee basis. In other words, you won’t have to make a payment upfront. In fact, the lawyer will only accept payment if they win your lawsuit.
Then, you’ll only pay them a small percentage of your personal injury claim settlement.
You won’t have to pay a lawyer out of pocket.
If you think you can’t afford a lawyer, schedule a free consultation appointment. Ask them about their fee structure. You might find you can afford their services after all.
Working with a lawyer could increase your chances of a huge personal injury claim settlement.
2. Choosing the Wrong Lawyer
There are over 135,000 personal injury lawyers in the US. Not every lawyer will have the experience and expertise you need, though. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is failing to vet your options.
First, make sure to choose a lawyer who is licensed to practice in the state you’re in. Make sure they have years of experience practicing in the area, too. Some laws and procedures can vary based on your location.
Then, ask each lawyer about their specialty. It’s not enough to find a personal injury lawyer. Instead, consider your specific case.
Personal injury lawyers can handle a mix of personal injury claims, including:
- Automobile accidents (car, truck, Lyft, Uber, bicycle, motorcycle, etc.)
- Slip and falls
- Product liability
- Medical malpractice (birth injuries, failure to diagnosis, misdiagnosis, surgical errors, etc.)
- Assault and battery
- Animal bites
Choose a lawyer who specializes in your type of case. Make sure they’ve handled multiple cases like yours, too.
They can leverage their previous experience and expertise when building your lawsuit.
3. Believing You Have to Go to Court
Don’t worry; most personal injury claims are settled out of a courtroom. If you’re concerned about going to court, take a breath.
However, your lawyer shouldn’t avoid trial altogether. Instead, they should choose a strategy with your best interests in mind.
When choosing your lawyer, make sure they’re not apprehensive about taking your case to court. Otherwise, they might accept a lower personal injury claim settlement to avoid going to court.
Ask your lawyer how many cases they’ve handled in front of a judge and jury. Ask about the outcome of those cases, too.
Take the time to ask the lawyer about their overall track record. You’ll want a winner at your side.
If the lawyer doesn’t have your best interests in mind, scratch them off your list.
4. Not Calculating Your Losses Accurately
Before filing a personal injury claim, talk to your attorney. Bring them your medical bills, property damages, and paystubs. Your lawyer will help calculate your losses, including your pain and suffering.
If you try to handle the claim alone, you might leave money on the table.
Insurance companies want to pay you as little as possible. Instead, speak with a lawyer. They’ll make sure you calculate your losses accurately.
5. Not Filing Within the Time Frame
When filing a personal injury claim, it’s important to remain mindful of the statute of limitations. Some states only give you two years from the date of the injury to file a claim. Make sure to file your personal injury claim as soon as possible.
Otherwise, you might miss your chance to pursue the case.
6. Failing to Investigate
Don’t rush to file a personal injury claim without conducting an investigation. Talk to your lawyer. They might have professionals they can call on to help.
Conducting an investigation can help you gather evidence to support your claim. Your lawyer can determine who was at fault. Then, they can argue the other party’s negligence caused your injuries.
You could win more from your personal injury claim settlement as a result.
7. Not Visiting a Doctor or Following Their Orders
Immediately after the accident, visit a doctor. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is failing to seek medical treatment. Your doctor will make an official record of your injuries.
Don’t leave a gap in your treatment, either. Instead, follow the doctor’s orders. Make sure to attend your follow-up appointments, too.
Otherwise, you might fail to prove the accident caused your injuries. You might struggle to prove the accident caused lasting pain and suffering, too.
8. Giving the Insurance Company a Statement
Don’t speak with an insurance company without having a lawyer present.
Remember, the insurance company will want to pay you as little as possible. They don’t have your best interests in mind.
In fact, they might use anything you say against you.
Instead, talk to your lawyer before giving the insurance company a statement.
9. Posting on Social Media
Don’t sabotage your own claim. Remain wary about what you say to others about the accident. Don’t point the finger at anyone, either.
Avoid mentioning the incident on social media, too. Otherwise, the posts and photos you publish online could hurt your claim.
Filing Your Personal Injury Claim: 9 Mistakes to Avoid Throughout the Process
Don’t make these mistakes when filing a personal injury claim. Instead, take the time to consult a lawyer. They’ll help you maximize your personal injury claim settlement.
With their help, you can receive the compensation you deserve.
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