At Charles J. Argento, our Houston car accident lawyer knows there are countless mistakes Texas injury victims can make to harm their chances of filing a successful insurance claim against a liable driver.
We also know that it is impossible to know what those mistakes might be if you have never been injured because of another person, party, or entity’s negligence.
Avoiding mistakes is essential to protect your chances of receiving rightful compensation after an accident with injuries. Here, we provide tips on maintaining your claim’s integrity.
Mistake #1: Allowing the Other Driver to Talk You Out of Calling the Police
It happens all the time. An accident will occur, and the at-fault driver takes complete responsibility at the scene. They are “so sorry” and willingly provide all their insurance details, leading you to believe getting the police involved is not necessary. This is untrue.
What typically happens next is the person denies the crash ever happened, and all you have is their word against yours. This can mean paying for your damages out of pocket.
Contacting 911 to report a crash involving injuries achieves several crucial objectives:
- It allows law enforcement to review the crash scene and determine, in their independent and professional opinion, how the crash occurred and who was at fault.
- It documents the names, contact information, insurance, licenses, and registrations of the drivers involved, as well as any eyewitness accounts of the crash.
- It provides legitimate crash documentation to help support your personal injury claim.
Immediately call the police when a car crash occurs in Texas, no matter what the other driver says.
Mistake #2: Admitting Fault or Minimizing the Result of the Crash
It is certainly common for people who have been in vehicle collisions to say things like, “I’m so sorry! Are you okay?” and for the other to respond, “I’m okay,” while reviewing the crash damage.
Don’t. Anything you say from the time of the crash can be used to minimize your damages or, worse, place the blame for the crash on you.
Do not talk about the accident with anyone at the scene other than police and paramedics, but even then, do not admit fault or comment about the nature or extent of your injuries.
Mistake #3: Not Going to the Hospital Immediately After the Crash
The adrenaline from the crash can mask any injuries you may have until it wears off. Do not let your body trick you into believing you are okay. Seeking medical care allows professional healthcare providers to examine you, document any injuries, outline a treatment plan, and follow up on your condition to ensure you get the care you need to fully recover.
Never assume you are okay. Seek medical care right away so you are confident your injuries have been diagnosed and to lay the groundwork for your personal injury claim.
Mistake #4: Speaking with the Insurance Company Without an Attorney
An insurance adjuster or investigator for the liability insurance company of one or more of the other drivers may contact you and ask for a written or recorded statement about the accident.
Please do not speak to them or state without consulting with a personal injury attorney.
Insurance companies are only interested in protecting their bottom lines – not paying you the compensation you deserve for your injuries. They are not on your side, so anything you tell them may become evidence the insurer uses to avoid paying your claim for damages.
Mistake #5: Accepting a Settlement Offer Without Speaking with an Attorney
An insurance company for another motorist may contact you shortly after a car accident and offer to settle the case. This is especially true if they know your claim is going to be substantial.
A quick settlement before you have partnered with an experienced Houston personal injury attorney means you may take a settlement significantly less than your claim’s actual value.
When you accept an offer, you sign a release giving up your right to additional compensation you may need because of permanent disability or future medical expenses. Waiting, while not as attractive an option as immediate payment, can make a difference in the overall amount of compensation you receive and what you must pay out of pocket in the future.
Contact Our Experienced Houston Car Accident and Injury Attorneys Today
If you have been injured in a vehicle collision caused by negligence in Texas, contact our experienced auto accident lawyer in Houston today to schedule a free consultation by calling (713)-225-5050 or contacting us online so that together, we can pursue justice by holding the negligent person or combination of parties liable for your full financial recovery.