After understanding the value of your personal injury case, your task is to impress upon the insurance company or a Judge or Jury at a trial, to receive rightful compensation. Insurance companies typically aim to pay as little as possible for insurance claims. They rely on common pitfalls to minimize your claim value, and avoiding these can be the key to a fair settlement.
Prompt Medical Care for Injuries
One of the first steps you should take is receiving medical care promptly after the accident. This is to document that you are indeed experiencing pain due to the accident. While a visit to the emergency room isn’t always necessary, seeking medical care soon after the incident is crucial. Adherence to the treatment plan provided by your doctor is equally important.
Understandably, your pain and suffering might be clear to you, but without proper medical documentation, it’s challenging to convey this to others. If you have a broken wrist, for instance, but fail to report wrist pain to your doctor, you risk receiving no compensation for it. Therefore, every injury or symptom should be properly recorded in your medical chart. Injuries, especially soft tissue ones, are often subjective, and without your input, they remain unidentified. Therefore, inform your doctor about all your symptoms and ask for them to be indicated in your chart.
Honest Reporting of Symptoms
Ensure that your doctor knows every symptom, injury, or pain you’re experiencing, even if you consider them minor. Reporting all issues helps the doctor treat you better and allows you to receive full compensation for your suffering. If your only complaints to the doctor are about your neck and back, while you’re also experiencing pain in your knee, hip, head, shoulder, and foot, you’re inadvertently limiting your treatment options and reducing your claim value.
Don’t omit any previous injuries or accidents either. A common myth is that you can’t be compensated for a prior injury – that’s not true. In Louisiana, the law considers aggravation/exacerbation injuries and applies the eggshell skull doctrine. These laws ensure you’re compensated for an increased level of pain due to an accident, even for a pre-existing condition.
Honesty about your past injuries prevents insurance companies from damaging your credibility, as any discrepancy discovered later can be used against you in your claim process.
Social Media Caution
Insurance companies often peruse your social media accounts, especially in serious accidents and commercial insurance policies. While it’s crucial to continue enjoying life despite your pain, be cautious about posting activities that could be misconstrued as evidence of your wellness. Ensure to update your privacy settings and be wary of unknown follow requests.
Your Role in the Claim Process
Your foremost goal should be regaining health. We, at The Burrell Firm LLC, will strive to prepare your case thoroughly, aiming for maximum value through settlement, mediation, or trial. However, your role in the process is vital and truly the most important.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
Should you find yourself injured in an auto accident, consider having a lawyer represent you. Post-accident, determining the worth of your case isn’t easy. Experienced lawyers from The Burrell Firm LLC can advise you and help determine your case value.
Contact us today for a free initial consultation:
New Orleans: Call us at (504) 475-7578
Ruston: Call us at (504) 475-7578
Monroe/West Monroe: Call us at (504) 475-7578