Your first priority after a crash is likely to get your life back to normal as quickly as possible. When dealing with insurance companies, the odds are stacked against you. They are far more experienced at dictating the outcome of a case than you are.
The good news is, when you speak to an experienced car accident lawyer, you gain a significant advantage over the insurance companies. That's because a lawyer can help you make critical decisions in the days following your crash. Before agreeing to speak to the other driver's insurance company, here's what you should know.
Recorded statements can hurt your claim
One of the first things the other driver's insurance company will look for is a recorded statement from you. They want you to inadvertently admit fault so they can reduce or deny your compensation. Be aware that providing a recorded statement can hurt your claim. The questions insurance companies ask may seem harmless and innocuous at first. But these are trick questions designed to later be used against you.
For instance, let's say the insurance company asks you what injuries you sustained in the crash. You tell them that you feel fine. It later turns out that you developed whiplash or a concussion and need extensive medical care. The insurance company will likely use your original statement to argue that you're lying about your injury. This is common with whiplash and concussions because these injuries often don't produce symptoms for several days after a crash.
Some crash victims are under the impression that they have to give a recorded statement to the other driver's insurance company. This is a myth. Before speaking to the other driver's insurance company, be sure to consult with a car accident lawyer. An experienced lawyer will advise you of your legal rights and act as a buffer between you and the insurance company.
Insurance companies don't want you to speak to an attorney
The last thing the other driver's insurance company wants you to do is to speak to an attorney. They know that if you try to handle your claim on your own, they can easily take advantage of you. Without the help of an experienced car accident lawyer, you likely won't get compensated for the full value of your claim. For example, let's say you accrued a total of $20,000 from medical expenses, lost wages and property damage. You already accepted a lowball settlement for $8,000, and therefore, can't pursue additional damages. The insurance company will not factor in any future losses, such as future medical costs or wage loss. Their goal is to close your case out quickly so they can pay you as little as possible.
When you consult with an experienced attorney at Vaughan & Vaughan, you can rest assured that your case is in good hands. We will factor in every dollar in damages, including non-economic damages (pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, etc.). Moreover, our attorneys will never settle for anything less than the compensation you deserve. Fortunately, the majority of car accident cases are resolved through a financial settlement. If the insurance company refuses to do the right thing, we'll be prepared to take them to trial. We'll never stop fighting for you.
It's critical to see a doctor and speak to a lawyer
If you haven't already seen your doctor, it's vitally important that you promptly do so. Even if you don't feel any pain immediately after your crash, a medical evaluation could reveal that you sustained an injury. Make sure you get documentation of your diagnosis and any treatment or recommendations provided by your doctor. Also, be sure to follow up with your doctor if you experience any delayed injury symptoms. Some symptoms can appear several days after a crash.
After seeing a doctor, make sure you consult with the attorneys at Vaughan & Vaughan. Our law firm has fought for the rights of injured people in Indiana for more than a century. We'll gather the facts needed to build a strong case and fight to maximize your compensation. To schedule your free and confidential case evaluation, simply contact us online or call our Lafayette law office.