Insurance companies don’t like paying out fair settlements after accidents where people get hurt, which makes it extremely difficult to get fair compensation without a lawyer on your side. However, that doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do on your end to improve your chances of getting compensation.
It’s your lawyer’s job to compile evidence, calculate your damages, and build a convincing claim that ensures you get every dollar you’re owed. However, it can make your lawyer’s job easier, and make your case close much faster (which means getting that check in your hands faster!), if he or she doesn’t have to start from scratch.
There are five simple things you can do to help your lawyer win your personal injury claim.
Don’t Wait to File
The statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits in Louisiana is just one year. You may think that’s a lot of time, but in the legal world, it’s not much time at all. You could lose valuable months before your injuries are even properly diagnosed or while you’re stuck in negotiations with the insurance company.
Immediately after the accident (if you are able), and in the days following, collect the following information:
- Contact information for any witnesses
- The contact information of the potentially negligent party
- Photos of the accident scene and your injuries – the time stamps will help prove when the injuries occurred
- The police report number and badge number of the responding officer
- Receipts for your medical costs
- Receipts for repair or replacement costs for personal property damaged in the accident
- Notes on when you visited the doctor and what was discussed
- Journal entries documenting your pain level and how your injury has impacted your life
- Anything and everything related to your accident!
Some of these your lawyer will be able to request from other sources, but it saves time if you can provide it to your attorney at the start.
Don’t stretch the truth or make guesses about the circumstances of your accident, such as how fast the other driver was going before they hit you, if you were injured in a car crash. Conflicting details will cast doubt on the rest of your claim, even if you didn’t deliberately omit or misstate anything.
Attend All Medical Appointments
Your medical appointments are valuable evidence of the origin and seriousness of your injuries! If you miss appointments, the insurer will assume your injuries are not as debilitating or painful as stated, and this could reduce your settlement.
It’s in the best interests of your case, not to mention your health, to follow all doctors’ instructions until they decide you are completely recovered. This includes attending all appointments, including physical therapy sessions, and completing any course of prescribed medication.
Stay Off of Social Media
The insurance company doesn’t want to pay your claim, so it will find every reason to shift the blame for your accident onto you to justify a smaller payout or deny your claim altogether. If your social posts suggest you feel guilty about the accident (which could be twisted to imply fault), or your photos suggest you aren’t as injured as you really are, this will be used against you.
For All the Rest, Leave It to Dudley DeBosier
Following these five tips can significantly improve your chances of success when filing a personal injury claim. At Dudley DeBosier Injury Lawyers, we aren’t afraid to go to trial when the initial settlement offer isn’t enough to cover our clients’ accident-related expenses. And our Baton Rouge personal injury lawyers will work with you every step of the way so your needs are met.
Have questions about a potential injury claim? Call us today for a free case review.
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