How Your Actions After a Car Accident Can Affect Your Compensation Claim

car accident claim

American citizens are no strangers to accidents. So many accidents happen on US streets that many are not fazed by the scary numbers. To get a better perspective on things, the US recorded 35,766 fatal car accidents in 2020. There were over 1.5 million crashes that caused some kind of injury and 3.6 million crashes that resulted in property damage.

These are not small numbers. Figures like this should be taken seriously, as it is only a matter of time before you too become a victim of one.

Here’s another bad thing to top off what we’ve said earlier: Even if you are a safe driver, odds are someone is going to ram their vehicle into you. In such situations, the only one you can rely on is a lawyer. They will help you in all aspects of a car accident claim, right from filing the claim and taking advantage of evidence to negotiating with the at-fault party.

Fortunately, in the case of a car collision, an experienced lawyer at Dolman Law Group has extensive experience handling car collision cases. They will help the car accident victim get justice and compensation. Legal assistance aside, there are some things that you shouldn’t do. Things that will hurt your car accident claim if you’re too careless. This article talks about such things.

The Actions that Have an Impact on Your Compensation Claim

Like everything, car accidents have a set of do’s and don’ts that all victims are expected to follow. Mistakes during car accident claims will hurt the victim deeply, financially, physically, and emotionally. The sections below discuss some aspects of a car accident and how they impact your compensation claim.

1. Handling the Claim Alone

The chances of a successful car accident claim are low if you plan on handling it alone.

You will need the assistance of a legal professional. Without an experienced car accident lawyer by your side, you’re vulnerable to

  • Accepting a lower settlement offer
  • Falling prey to the tactics of the insurance adjuster
  • Not taking all damages and losses into account
  • Not have an expert witness to support your claim
  • Missing the statute of limitations
  • Commit mistakes in paperwork

These reasons make a car accident lawyer a crucial part of a compensation claim.

2. Leaving the Accident Scene

In some states, it is punishable by law to leave the accident scene.

Regardless of your role in the accident, you must stay on the spot until the police arrive. A failure to stay at the accident scene may lead to a hit-and-run charge.

3. Apologizing to the At-Fault Party

A car accident scene is one of the very few locations in the world where empathy will get you into trouble.

Apologizing for the accident or expressing regret is considered an admission of guilt. The at-fault party’s insurance company will cling on to the fact that you apologized and will use it against you.

Your odds of receiving lower compensation or none at all are extremely high if you apologize after an accident.

First aid in ambulance

4. Not Seeking Medical Attention

Immediate medical attention after an accident is essential for three reasons. They are:

  • It treats your injuries
  • It helps diagnose hidden injuries
  • It helps insurance companies understand the seriousness of your injuries

The first two are essential for your health. Timely medical intervention negates the impact of the injuries sustained.

The last one is related to your car accident claim. Insurance companies treat skipping a hospital visit as a sign of a minor accident. This means that you have not suffered any injuries. This is valid grounds for denying a claim.

5. Not Collecting Evidence

Evidence is important in any case. Immediately after an accident, you’re expected to take pictures of all relevant elements. This includes

  • Your injuries
  • The damaged vehicles
  • The at-fault party’s license plate number
  • The environment (like tire marks and broken signs)
  • Witness statement and contact information

These pieces of evidence are vital for a successful car accident claim.

If you’re too hurt to collect evidence, ask a passerby to do it for you.

Not Contacting Your Insurance Company

Your insurance company must be notified about the accident as soon as possible. Almost all insurance policies have something related to this in their terms and conditions.

Failure to report the accident can lead to complications if the at-fault party doesn’t have sufficient insurance. It might even lead to the denial of future claims.

Wrapping Up

A car accident claim requires teamwork to be successful. Although a car accident lawyer does the majority of the fighting, the victim’s actions have consequences as well.

Therefore, it’s best to stay informed about the mistakes that could ruin a car accident claim.