Accidents happen all the time, but despite the fact that they are common occurrences does not lessen the impact of them. The aftermath of a motor vehicle accident can be overwhelming, traumatic, and even chaotic, leading to various types of mistakes that often compromise one’s chances of obtaining proper compensation. While it might be easier said than done, it is critical to try to remain calm and keep a level head to avoid making any costly errors.
Read on to learn about some of the most common mistakes every driver should remember to avoid in the event of an accident:
- Failing to call the police: Even if an accident is relatively minor, calling the police is an important and necessary step that provides critical information to insurance companies. When law enforcement arrives at the scene, they can collect evidence and file a police report, which can help build your personal injury case. Failing to call the police is a major mistake and the insurance company of the at-fault party will question why you did not ask for a police investigation and question the validity of your claim. You might think it is less of a hassle to involve the police, but you are actually doing yourself a disservice, so always remember to dial 9-1-1 after an accident.
- Admitting guilt: Apologies are almost a natural and impulsive reaction when something terrible occurs, but before you start to say, “I’m sorry,” remember that this is akin to admitting guilt, which is the last thing you want to do when you are not at fault for it. It might seem like a nice gesture, but it will come back to haunt you. An apology might not cost you all of your compensation, but it might be enough to hold you partially responsible for the accident, which can reduce the amount you receive.
- Failing to go visit your doctor: Going to the doctor immediately after an accident is not only important for your health and general wellbeing, but for your personal injury case as well. Just because you feel fine after an accident, does not mean you were not injured. In fact, many injuries take time before symptoms begin to manifest and, if you wait for your injuries to cause discomfort before you seek medical treatment, this can severely handicap your case. An insurance adjuster might argue that your ailments were caused by something other than the accident since you did not visit a doctor afterward. Start a medical paper trail early on and see your doctor as soon as possible.
- Failing to gather evidence: The police can do a lot for you, but you should not entirely rely on them to gather all of the evidence you need. If you are able to, you should take pictures of the scene and any pertinent details, write down names and contact information of witnesses, and exchange information with all drivers involved, including insurance information, license plate numbers, and driver’s licenses. The more information you are able to gather, the better.
- Settling too quickly: An initial settlement offer is almost always unreasonably low and will not begin to cover the expenses of an accident. As such, it is unwise to settle too quickly, despite the fact that it might be tempting to receive much-needed cash to pay for medical expenses or damaged property. In the long run, however, you will likely find that it is not enough. Once you accept an offer, you cannot reopen your case to pursue more compensation, which means you will end up having to bear the burden of any other costs the settlement did not cover. Try to be patient and take the time to build your case so you can receive the fair compensation you deserve.
Las Vegas Personal Injury
If you were recently injured in a motor vehicle accident caused by the negligent and reckless actions of another party, you have a right to pursue compensation for your injuries and other damages associated with the accident. At Shook & Stone, we have recovered over half a billion dollars on half of our clients and would be honored to be your legal advocate in or out of court. Backed by over 85 years of combined legal experience, you can be confident in our ability to effectively represent you.
Contact our office today at (702) 385-2220 to schedule a free case review.