You've been in a car accident. Your vehicle is totaled, you have injuries, and the at-fault driver's insurance company is giving you the runaround. Now you're left wondering - what are your rights in this situation? Can you make an injury claim? What steps should you take to protect yourself?
If this sounds familiar, you're not alone. Many accident victims are unclear about the claims process and hold common misconceptions about injury laws. Here are some of the biggest myths about car accident claims.
One of the most common car accident myths is that you must have a police report to make an injury claim.
Here are the key facts you should know:
Another common myth car injury lawyers hear is that accident victims must go to the emergency room or visit their doctor immediately after the crash if they want to file an injury claim. Many worry that waiting even a few days will ruin their chances of compensation.
Here's what you need to know:
The key is making sure you get evaluated by a doctor within a reasonable timeframe - most reputable car injury lawyers recommend within 2 days. This allows adrenaline to subside while still linking symptoms to the collision. Just explain any treatment delays to your attorney.
With proper medical records and evidence, moderate gaps before you seek a doctor will not ruin your injury claim. Working with an attorney ensures you take the right steps to protect your right to compensation.
One of the most damaging car accident myths car injury lawyers regularly encounter is that you should take the initial settlement offer made by the insurance company after a crash.
Adjusters are smart - they know accident victims are often in vulnerable positions financially and emotionally following a collision. By making a quick, low-ball offer, they take advantage of victims in order to save the insurance company money.
Here are some tactics adjusters use:
Our advice? Never accept a settlement offer without first consulting with an attorney. An experienced car accident lawyer knows how to properly value injury claims and will almost always substantially increase the settlement. While quick cash may be tempting, you'll ultimately end up with far more compensation by hiring a lawyer.
Contributory negligence is one of the biggest areas of confusion car injury lawyers see. This legal principle dictates that accident victims who share any percentage of fault cannot recover any damages from the primary at-fault party.
Many clients wrongly believe this is the law everywhere. In reality, only five states - Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, Virginia, and Washington D.C. - still follow the traditional contributory negligence doctrine.
Most states follow comparative negligence rules, under which victims who share partial fault can still recover compensation. Their damages are simply reduced by their percentage of responsibility.
For example, if you were found 30% at fault for an accident, you could still potentially recover 70% of damages from the primarily negligent driver.
An experienced attorney will work to minimize your fault percentage while maximizing the other driver's responsibility. Even if you partially contributed to the accident, you are still entitled to substantial compensation in most states.
Don't wrongly assume you can't recover anything just because you share some degree of fault. Our legal team knows how to navigate comparative negligence laws to protect your rights. A free case evaluation with us will assess your options.
Another common myth accident victims believe is that they will need to go to court before a judge and jury to settle their injury claims. This leads many people to avoid pursuing compensation entirely out of fear of court proceedings.
Here is the reality - over 90% of personal injury claims settle out of court prior to trial. An experienced attorney starts by seeking to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company through demand letters, evidence retention, expert analysis, and other leverage strategies.
Only if the insurer refuses to make a satisfactory offer would a lawsuit potentially be filed. Even then, the majority of cases are resolved via settlement before ever stepping foot in a courtroom.
While trials happen on occasion when insurers won't be reasonable, they are a small minority of car accident claims. Don't let fear of legal proceedings prevent you from seeking fair compensation. With an attorney negotiating aggressively on your behalf, most claims are resolved quickly and smoothly outside court.
Many people wrongly believe that injury claims must be settled within a certain timeframe after an accident - usually 1-2 years. They feel pressured to resolve their case quickly based on this myth.
In reality, every claim is unique and there are no standard time limits to reach a fair out-of-court legal settlement. Some factors that impact the timeline include:
The bottom line? Rushing to settle prematurely often results in accident victims leaving compensation on the table. Experienced car injury lawyers take the necessary time to thoroughly investigate liability, fully quantify long-term damages, and fight for maximum compensation through assertive negotiation tactics.
Don't feel pressured by mythic time limits. Your car injury lawyers will provide reasonable updates on case progress while working as quickly as circumstances permit. Focus on recovery and let your attorneys handle the legal process.
One of the most pervasive myths car injury lawyers hear from car crash victims is that submitting an injury claim will cause their own insurance rates to spike significantly. Many choose not to pursue rightful compensation out of fear of increased premiums.
Here are the facts:
The bottom line? Don't let myths about insurance rate hikes stop you from seeking fair compensation after a crash. The ultimate payout is well worth the unlikely scenario of a minor premium increase. Your attorney can provide specific guidance based on your policy.
Here is another significant misunderstanding car injury lawyers often encounter - that car accident victims can or must directly sue the at-fault driver personally after a crash.
In reality, this is not how injury claims work in most cases.
The attorney's job is to deal directly with insurance companies, not personally sue individual drivers. Car injury lawyers send demand letters, negotiate claim settlements, and file suit against insurers as necessary. Don't hesitate to pursue rightful compensation over misconceptions about how the underlying liabilities work.
Perhaps the biggest myth of all that car injury lawyers hear from car crash victims is that hiring an attorney will be prohibitively expensive. Many choose not to seek counsel out of misconceptions about legal fees and expenses.
In reality, retaining an experienced car accident lawyer is not financially risky thanks to standard contingency fee agreements. Here's how they work to protect clients:
Don't let myths about expensive attorneys prevent you from seeking experienced legal help after an accident. Our firm provides strong financial incentives to maximize compensation for clients. With us in your corner, you ultimately end up with the largest possible recovery in your pocket.
Unlike insurance companies, car injury lawyers like Husain Law + Associates — Accident Attorneys, P.C.fully protect the interests of injured victims. With extensive knowledge of injury laws, legal processes, and court proceedings, they level the playing field against big insurers.
Here are some of the key benefits car injury lawyers provide:
Having car injury lawyers fully handle your injury claim removes the stress of dealing with insurers, calculating losses, negotiating settlements, and navigating the court system if needed.