Making These Common Personal Injury Mistakes Can Cost You Big

personal injury mistakesIf a person is in an accident involving serious injury, it is imperative they get a lawyer. Acting on their own, without legal counsel, many personal injury victims ruin their chances of receiving fair settlements by making several common mistakes and the amount of money received in the personal injury settlement will decrease precipitously. Contact your lawyer early and begin collecting data and investigating the scene. For small accidents, there is more time, but it is still recommended that legal counsel be present for the client.

Typical Mistakes During Personal Injury Cases

Providing a Recorded Statement

The insurance company will ask you for a recorded statement. It is important to understand that it is their goal to use what you say to help their bottom line. These statements will typically be used against you during the cross-examination section of the trial. It isn’t legally required of a person to give a recorded statement — working with a personal injury lawyer will help to ensure that your statement doesn’t work against you and create a controlled environment, ideal for your message.

Assuming the Legal System is On Your Side

Another mistake that is often made is people assume the system is set up to help them. This, sadly, is not always the case. The threat of legal action is often the biggest leverage a client can have on an insurance company. Without that pressure, there is often little that will move the institution to deliver a fair payment. Most victims take the first offer and lose unknown amounts of money that they are truly owed.

Looking For A Quick Payout

If you are seriously injured, do not look for a quick or easy settlement. You will end up receiving less money than is typically given to serious accident victims. Gather all the documentation available. Make sure a doctor is involved and knows the full scope of the damage to your person. Comments from a doctor, combined with detailed medical files will make the insurance company move its stance.

Expecting the Negligent Party to Stick to Their Story

People also typically assume the negligent party or company’s admission of liability is locked in stone. This is not always the case. Often, things change, especially as the financial ramifications start to set in. One minute they are agreeing that the accident was their fault, the next they are doing interviews with people that cast doubt on your side of the story. It is important to keep facts straight. Questions from the beginning of the case may be asked again, with different answers. Any error or change in the story could become a grey area in the investigation.

Not Demanding Appropriate Settlement Amounts

The most common mistake clients make is to demand too much or too little in financial settlements. Demanding too little will clearly get you a lower offer. Demanding too much money causes the claimant to look out of his or her depth. If the offer is in excess of any precedents, insurance companies and opposing counsel will assume the person does not know how the system works or be more likely to dismiss the case. This opens up your suit to lesser offers. Having experienced personal injury legal counsel will help you avoid these mistakes by helping you to understand the true value of your claim and keep your goals in mind.

Villani & DeLuca hopes that these tips will help you navigate accident claims. They are just the start. The most costly mistake personal injury victims make is to not secure proper legal counsel from the start. If you have been injured, you deserve the full amount of settlement entitled to you. Contact the personal injury lawyers at Villani & DeLuca to begin your case and get the justice you deserve.