After being hurt in an accident, filing a personal injury claim may seem overwhelming, as there is a specific process that should be followed to actually file a legitimate claim. However, by avoiding common mistakes that are made when filing, the process should be somewhat painless.
Be avoiding the following mistakes, injured parties have a higher chance of filing a successful personal injury claim.
Mistake #1: Worrying that too much time has passed
Depending on the state of residency, the time frame to file is between 1 to 6 years. These timelines can move fast, but certain situations may require the additional time. Some injuries (such as surgical mistakes) could take years to be realized, and the statute of limitations may even adjust accordingly for those claims.
Mistake #2: Not filing because of shared blame
The contributory negligence clause helps determine a course of action when both parties could be partially responsible, and in some situations, compensation can still be awarded for the injury. This clause allows for both parties to be somewhat at fault, but if one party was found to be 50% at fault or greater, they are not eligible to recoup compensation.
Mistake #3: Believing that hiring representation will be too expensive
Personal injury lawyers typically charge based on contingency, and will only collect payment if a settlement is reached. In fact, the choice to go without knowledgeable and experienced representation could be a costly mistake.
Mistake #4: Assuming that a court appearance will be required
After a fair amount of compensation has been agreed upon, the majority of claims can be settled outside of the courtroom. While a hearing will require additional resources and time, it may not be wise to skip it in order to get the deserved compensation.
Mistake #5: Failing to consider all damages
The short- and long-term impacts of the injury on the injured party’s ability to work, their medical expenses, and their mental well-being must be considered prior to signing any type of agreement. “Injured parties should consult with an attorney to have them review anticipated damages prior to considering any settlement agreements,” explained Marc Anidjar, injury lawyer in West Palm Beach.
Mistake #6: Lack of consideration of additional factors
The cause of the accident should be known in order to file a personal injury claim. If another car hit you, additional considerations must be taken to discover if the weather was an impact, if the other driver was on their phone, and whether or not both vehicles were correctly maintained.
Mistake #7: Failing to consider whether or not there were additional liable parties
Though you may have been rear-ended and it could be due to distracted driving, additional considerations may come into play that could result in a greater settlement. If the vehicle that rear-ended you had faulty brakes, the vehicle manufacturer could be the most liable. In certain cases, several liable parties may exist, and a lawyer can help determine fault.