5 Steps to Filing a Personal Injuries Claim
Even a seemingly minor injury can cause serious damage to your life. You might be eligible to file a claim for compensation if you were not at fault for the circumstance that caused your injury. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as signing paperwork and having a settlement sent to your bank account.
- Get Medical Treatment
No matter if you are pursuing a personal injury claim or not, it is important to seek medical attention immediately after an accident. Even if your injuries are minor, it is important to have them checked out.
If you plan on claiming compensation, it is even more important to seek medical treatment. Otherwise you might receive less compensation or no compensation at all.
- Collect Evidence
Once you have been examined by a doctor, the next step is to gather evidence supporting your claim. It is advisable to capture photos or videos of the aftermath, such as vehicles involved in an accident, any hazards you tripped on, or the slippery surface you slipped on.
Be sure to document your injuries and the steps taken. A written record of the events, who was involved, what you feel, and what your doctor told you can be helpful in proving your case.
- Do Not Contact the Insurance Company
Although they will likely claim to be on your side, insurance companies want to know the minimum amount that you are willing to settle for in order to resolve the claim quickly, inexpensively, and without going to court. An insurance adjuster will look for flaws in your story and arguments to reduce your compensation.
- Hire an Attorney
Some accident victims prefer to pursue a personal injury claim on their own to avoid having to pay attorney fees. However, this comes with several disadvantages.
If cost is a concern, many personal injury law firms work on a contingency basis. You will only ever have to pay your lawyer if your case is successful.
Personal injury lawyers have the ability to negotiate with insurance companies and get results. It can be difficult to even speak with an insurance company by yourself. According to Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, it may be possible to delay the payment of medical treatment until you have a successful claim.
- Watch the Clock
The most important thing when filing a personal injuries claim is to act quickly. You might not be eligible for compensation if you don’t act quickly enough. Although the statute of limitations is what limits how long you can claim compensation, it can vary from one state to another. There are exceptions to the general statute of limitations, so it is always a good idea to speak with a lawyer.
If you do not file your claim, physical evidence could also disappear. This could make your case much weaker and put to opposing party in a better position to reduce the value of your settlement.