1. Not Filing a Police Report After An Accident.
If you have been in a car accident you should call the police or state highway patrol so they can fill out a accident report. This document usually will have the names of the people involved in the wreck, their contact information, and their insurance information. If there was any laws violated, it should be included in the police report. Also some officers will take the time to write down the statements of witnesses, take pictures or draw out the scene of the accident. These reports can help your case in a court of law.
2. Not Quickly Getting Medical Attention.
You may have been injured but not know it yet. Whiplash, headaches, and bruising are common symptoms that do not surface until a few days after the accident. If you go to the hospital directly after the accident a medical report will be established, even if they find nothing wrong with you. It is important to document everything.
3. Not Creating A Written Account Of What Happened
Most people would not think to write down what happened during the accident. You should do this, and place a correct date and time on it. If for some reason you do need to go to court over the personal injury, you will have a written account to present to the court. Court dates are set many months after the incident and by that time some of the details may become foggy. A written report will help jog your memory.
4. Not Continuing Your Recommended Medical Treatment
If your doctor recommends physical therapy twice a week for your knee after a car wreck, you need to diligently go to physical therapy twice a week. Not completing treatment or missing multiple appointments will let the defense fight that your wounds were not as severe as what you are claiming them to be.
5. Not Having A Full Understanding Of A Document Before You Sign It
The insurance company of the other driver may want to present you with some release forms for you to sign. Never sign any document or form unless you know exactly what it means. If you are not sure, have your lawyer take a look at the document.
6. Not Giving Your Doctor The Truth About Your Injuries
Never lie to your doctor about your injuries. They need to know what symptoms were associated with the accident and which are not. If you have been suffering head aches prior to the car wreck and now they are worse, your doctor should know about it. If we can prove that your previous injuries were made worse as a result of the accident, your compensation may be increased. A complete medical history is important when proving this.
7. Corresponding With The Insurance Company Of The Other Driver
Use caution when talking to these people. They will want to ask you about the accident, how bad your wounds are, and if you have medical insurance. Do not answer any questions. Take their number and have your attorney call them back. Giving them too much information may hurt the outcome of your claim.
8. Quickly Settling With The Insurance Company Prior To Finishing Medical Treatment
It may seem like a nice gesture from the other insurance company when they try to pay for your claim quickly. Do not accept this until you have finished treatment and received all your medical bills. The last thing you want is to sign a release form only to find out that the bills keep coming in. Don’t forget that different companies will charge you when you go to the emergency room.
9. Not Photographing The Scene Of The Accident Yourself
Although the police are suppose to document the accident and photograph everything, sometimes they mistakenly forget to. That is why you or friend should take pictures of everything. If you have an iPhone or any other camera phone take pictures of both cars, the damage, the street you are one, and the position of the vehicles. Keep a time and date stamp with the pictures filed on your computer or printed out in a folder at your home. Make notes with each picture you take and explain what the picture is about and why it is significant.
10. Not Contacting a Personal Injury Attorney Quickly.
Although there is a two year limit to seeking compensation for a personal injury case, it is best to talk to a lawyer while the car accident is still fresh. Your lawyer needs to know every detail of the wreck before proceeding with a case. In some instances a good lawyer will visit the scene of the accident to obtain a more detailed analysis. If the accident was a year ago, most of the time any evidence will be clean up and gone.