(December 8, 2020)--In any given year, over three million Americans will suffer some form of injury as a result of a motor vehicle crash. Filing a lawsuit allows for financial compensation and makes it easier to get on with your life.
If you are filing a vehicle-related lawsuit, make sure to avoid these common mistakes:
- Failing to take pictures at the scene
- Failing to meet all necessary deadlines
- Speaking out about your case
- Failing to fill out all forms or filling out forms incorrectly
- Signing things without speaking with legal counsel first
Not Taking Pictures
Documentation is a crucial part of your case. Lots of pictures with many details will build the claim in your favor. Whip out your phone as soon as you've been in a car accident. Take many photos at the scene of the accident. Get lots of close-ups of your car including the areas of impact and any surrounding areas damaged in any way.
Take pictures of everything that might be related to your case. This includes photographs of the other person's vehicle. If you have an injury, photograph it before you receive medical attention. Do the same for all the passengers in the car.
Failing to Meet Deadlines
Deadlines are hugely important when making a case for eligibility for compensation in a car accident claim. State laws governing vehicle accidents vary greatly from state to state. Avoid assuming you have plenty of time to file all the paperwork related to your claim. You might have as little as a few weeks to get everything in place. Now is the time to stay organized.
Find out what paperwork needs filing and when it must be done. Many states allow only a year to file. It might take months to recover from a vehicle-related accident.
In the aftermath of an accident, it may be tempting to tell the whole world about what happened and why. Friends and relatives often have detailed questions about what took place and exactly how it happened. Do not tell anyone anything about the accident unless they need to know.
Your spouse will need to know what happened and exactly what's going on with you and the car. Your best friend only needs to know that you're okay or that you're recovering. Keep in mind others might speak about the accident to their own friends and relatives. Do all you can to control the flow of information.
Filling Out Forms Incorrectly
If you've been in an accident, chances are you'll be filling out forms. You'll need to spend time writing in great detail about your car, what you were doing at the time of the accident, who was there with you, and what you saw as it happened.
Take your time. There's no need to rush. You want to make sure all the details are in order. Rushing leads to mistakes. These mistakes can be used against you. If you don't remember your daughter's social security number offhand, allow time to look it up.
Signing Things Without Speaking to an Attorney
In the immediate aftermath of the accident, you might be asked to sign many kinds of forms as you're on the way to the hospital. As the case continues, you'll encounter lots of documents relating to the accident. Don't sign them. A release often has fine print, freeing parties from any form of financial liability.
Contact a lawyer as soon as possible after an accident. They will look over any paperwork you're being handed. They'll make sure you're not signing away your right to appropriate compensation.