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What You Should Know about Car Crashes
Car accidents injure thousands of people each year, and victims are often left with substantial economic and non-economic damages. Fortunately, people who are injured in accidents caused by the negligence of others can typically recover compensation for their losses. Because the car accident claim process can be hard to navigate, and insurance companies are out to save money whenever possible, it's advisable for anyone involved in an accident to retain the representation of an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
Car Accidents & Car Accident Compensation for Victims
Car crashes can happen anytime and anywhere. In most cases, they happen when you least expect it, and they can turn your life upside down in an instant. Whether you have been injured in a T-bone crash, a head-on collision, a drunk driving accident, an accident involving distracted driving, or rear-ended at a stoplight or stop sign, if your accident was the result of someone else’s negligence, you are likely entitled to compensation. Some of the damages you may be able to pursue after a car accident include:
- Medical expenses
- Lost income
- Lost quality of life
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Property damage
Importantly, you only get one chance to settle your case, so it's critical that you work with an auto accident attorney when negotiating with the insurance company. Failing to do so could result in significant uncompensated losses.
Steps to Take Immediately After a Car Accident
There are certain things that you should do after you are involved in a car crash to protect both your health and your ability to recover the compensation you are owed.
Seek Medical Attention
It’s critical to seek medical attention after an accident, both for your health and for the viability of your car accident claim. For many injuries, early intervention is connected with a better outcome, and seeing a doctor right away can often prevent serious complications from arising. In addition, it’s vital to have an official medical record detailing your injuries when you make an insurance claim or go to court in order to prove your damages. In fact, failing to seek medical attention may even give the other side an opportunity to argue that you failed to mitigate your damages, further damaging your claim.
Document Your Accident
If you can, take pictures of the scene of the accident and your injuries, paying special attention to anything that you believe may have caused the accident. In addition, collect information about the other drivers involved, including their names, addresses, and insurance information. If there are witnesses, ask them for their contact information in case your attorney wants to reach out to them later.
Contact Your Insurance Company as Soon as Possible.
You should also report the incident to your insurer as soon as you can. Many insurance policies have requirements to report accidents within a certain amount of time, and failing to do so could result in a denial of coverage you need.
Retain a Car Accident Attorney Immediately
Finally, you should retain an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as you can after the crash. A lawyer will be able to determine whether you have a claim, evaluate your losses, and protect your rights from the insurance company. Importantly, do not give the other driver’s insurance company a statement until you have had a chance to speak to a lawyer. Once you have an attorney, the insurance company will need to communicate with him or her directly, protecting you from saying something that could hurt your claim.
Common Car Accident Injuries
Car crashes often leave victims with severe injuries. The forces involved in a collision are no match for the human body, and victims can easily sustain a wide variety of injuries that have the potential to change their lives. Some of the most common injuries people sustain in car crashes include:
- Broken bones
- Severe soft tissues injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries
Why Should I Hire a Car Accident Lawyer?
You may be curious as to why you need to hire a car accident lawyer, especially if it's clear that the other driver was at fault and your case is going to settle out of court. It's important to keep in mind that insurance companies invariably want to settle cases for as little as possible and will deny your claim entirely if they can find a way to do so. Car accident lawyers know insurance companies’ tricks, so they can protect your rights and ensure that you get the compensation you deserve.