You might be the most defensive driver in the State of Washington, but it’s nearly inevitable that you’ll cross paths with somebody who is careless and negligent and become the victim of a personal injury accident. You could be stopped at a red light when a dump truck crashes into you. With insurance deductibles, out-of-pocket expenses, and lost time from work, your expenses from that crash could be overwhelming. That’s why you need to know how to preserve and protect your rights after being injured in an accident. Here are a few things that you need to do and not do.
Report the Accident to 911
Ask the 911 operator to send both police and paramedics to the scene. The police will investigate the accident, and the paramedics can stabilize you and transport you to a nearby emergency room. Police, paramedics, and emergency room personnel will all make reports that will be pivotal in establishing your personal injury claim.
See Your Doctor
If you’re lucky and not hospitalized, emergency room personnel will provide you with a discharge summary instructing you to see your own doctor, a neurologist or orthopedist within a few days. Follow those instructions. If you elect to see your own doctor, and he or she refers you for physical therapy or a neurological or orthopedic exam, follow those instructions. Be sure to attend every diagnostic or therapy appointment that you have. Insurance companies look for missed appointments. Then, they can argue that you weren’t hurt to the extent that you claim.
Notify Your Insurance Company
As soon as you can, notify your insurance company of your accident. You’ll want to preserve your rights with your insurer in the event that you need to make a claim with it from your accident. Don’t worry about your premiums increasing. That’s highly unlikely. Then, call us for a free consultation and case review.
Don’t Give a Statement to the Opposing Insurer
The insurer of the person who caused your accident and injuries will probably contact you “just to see how you’re doing now.” There’s no truth to that. It wants a recorded statement from you. Politely refuse to give any kind of a statement. Washington law doesn’t require you to give one. The insurer only wants to use your own words against you in the future to try and attack your credibility and devalue your claim. Don’t be threatened or intimidated. If you’re told that your claim will be closed without a statement, let them close it. After you retain us to represent you, we can easily have it opened again.
Don’t Mention Your Accident on Social Media
Periodic searches will be made by the opposing insurer for you on social media. Don’t mention your accident, injuries or treatment online for the entire world to see. It’s none of their business, and whatever you say might be used against you to attack your credibility for a second time.
After being injured in an accident, preserve and protect your rights to the maximum compensation that you deserve by contacting us right away for a free consultation and case review. No initial retainer is even required for us to get started on your case.
If you’ve been involved in a car accident in the Spokane area, you may learn more on our page about car accidents.