The days immediately after an accident are often filled with extreme pain, phone calls, and the stress of raising money to pay the bills while you are unable to work. Unfortunately, it is during this period of confusion that many individuals say or do something that hurts their personal injury claim or prevents them from getting additional compensation in the future.
Common Mistakes People Make When Filing a Personal Injury Claim
The biggest mistake people make after an injury is failing to get a lawyer’s opinion on their case as soon as possible. A lawyer’s perspective is important for two reasons. First, an attorney can properly value your case to ensure that your settlement is enough to cover the full extent of your injuries. Second, he or she can prevent you from making many of the other avoidable mistakes that occur after an injury, including:
- Delaying medical treatment. It is best to see a doctor right away after an injury occurs. Not only does prompt medical treatment protect your health, but it also creates a record of your physical condition immediately after the injury. If you wait several days before seeing a doctor, the insurance company may claim that the delay in treatment is proof that your injuries are not related to the accident.
- Posting on social media. Anything you post about your personal injury claim on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or other online platforms can be taken out of context or used as evidence.
- Ignoring your doctor’s advice. If you cancel appointments or do not follow physical restrictions set by your doctor, the insurer may argue that your injuries are not serious.
- Giving recorded statements. Insurance agents may contact you for a “routine” statement that they will record for their own purposes. You should deny this request, and only provide basic information that is needed to process the claim (such as your name, address, and the date of the accident).
- Representing yourself. Many victims believe that they have to fight for compensation without hiring a lawyer in order to avoid taking on an additional financial burden. This is simply not true. A reputable personal injury attorney will not collect any fees until the case is won, and even then the cost is paid with settlement funds. In a contingency fee arrangement, the client will not be liable for any lawyer’s fees unless the case is successful—making the hiring of an attorney a low-risk, high-reward move for injury claimants.
Our Arkansas personal injury law firm offers free initial consultations to injury victims, and we do not charge for our services until your case is resolved. Contact us today via our online form to have your questions answered by a personal injury lawyer.