5 Tips to a More Successful Injury Claim
It’s commonly known that insurance companies will take every measure possible to avoid paying compensation after you have an accident. An insurance company is in business to make money, so payouts to accident victims cut into their profits.
Denying claims and shortchanging people isn’t right, but these unscrupulous practices are just one more thing that you’ll have to deal with after an accident. If you’ve been injured through no fault of your own, you have the right to recover compensation for your losses. Here are five things that you can do to increase your chances of a successful injury claim.
- Locate Witnesses
One of the things that can make an injury case irrefutable is the testimony of independent witnesses. These are people who can describe in clear terms:
- What happened leading up to the accident,
- How an accident occurred,
- Who was involved in the accident,
- The conditions at the scene, and
- What took place immediately following the accident.
A witness is someone who is not only going to support your version of the event, but they also may add information that could help your case by proving fault. Immediately after an accident, either you or a trusted representative should gather as much information from witnesses as possible. This includes their name, phone number, and what they saw.
- Seek Medical Attention
If you suffered injuries in an accident, you should seek medical treatment immediately. Even if you aren’t sure whether or not you’ve been injured, it’s better to err on the side of caution and go to the emergency room. Not only do you want to document your injuries with an official visit to the hospital or your physician, but you can also do so with images.
A picture is worth a thousand words, so have a loved one take pictures of your lacerations, bruises, and other visible injuries for your file. If your hospital visit results in a cast, stitches, or other treatment, make sure to take photos of that as well.
- Document Everything
Having photos and witnesses is a good start, but there is more that you can do to help your chances of a successful injury claim. If your injury resulted from a car accident, you should call 911 even if the accident seemed minor. Getting a police report makes the accident official and will allow you to document all of the information from the other party involved. Police reports and other incident reports can be used as evidence to prove a personal injury claim.
You should also carefully document all of the expenses and other negative effects of the injury. For example, you should begin keeping a special folder and diary that lists all of your medical expenses, lost wages, and property damages resulting from the accident and injury. If you have receipts for out of pocket payments, keep copies in this folder. If your injuries are preventing you from certain activities or impacting close relationships, start keeping some notes so that you can detail these losses for your claim.
- Exercise Extreme Caution
When you’ve been injured in an accident, it’s a sad fact that many of the people you encounter won’t have your best interests in mind. While still at the accident scene, it is important that you are careful about what you say as someone may try to get you to admit fault. While it’s perfectly acceptable to report the accident to your own insurance company, you are strongly advised against speaking with, giving statements to, or discussing settlement with an insurance company without first seeking the advice of an experienced Alabama personal injury attorney.
- Speak with a Qualified Injury Attorney
If you or a loved one has been injured due to the careless or wrongful acts of another party, it’s essential that you speak with a qualified Alabama personal injury attorney that can help you seek justice. Finding the right personal injury attorney could be essential to the success of your claim. An experienced injury attorney will not only advocate for your rights, but they will also pursue just compensation for your damages. Contact the Dothan, Alabama personal injury attorneys at Smith & McGhee now at 334-702-1744 or online to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.