When you are involved in an auto accident, it is normal to feel shock and disorientation, especially if you are injured. Below are five of the most common mistakes people make:
1. Failure to Timely File Your Claim
It is common for insurance companies to have strict deadlines for filing your claim after an auto accident. Failing to file your claim before the deadline can result in you losing the ability to recover compensation through insurance for your injuries and other damages incurred. You may still have the ability to file a personal injury lawsuit if the statute of limitations has not expired.
2. Admitting Fault
This may seem like something you would obviously avoid doing, but it is surprising how many people admit fault without meaning to do it. Most people do not say “it was my fault,” but they apologize or say other seemingly innocent things that can be taken as an admission of fault. Thus, it is imperative to be very careful when you speak to the other driver, any witnesses to the accident, the driver’s insurance agent, or any other party. Avoid saying anything that could be considered an admission of fault.
3. Social Media Posts
While it is very tempting to post pictures and commentary regarding your car accident on social media, you should avoid doing so. In fact, you should take a hiatus from social media completely while your personal injury claim is pending. You can rest assured that the insurance company and opposing counsel will diligently research your social media accounts in search of something to use against you. For example, a picture of you playing tennis while you are claiming a back injury from the auto accident could severely damage your claim. Thus, the best practice is to take a vacation from all social media until your claim has been resolved.
4. Failing to be Forthcoming About the Accident
Many accident victims are reluctant to be completely forthcoming about their injuries. They want to claim they are “okay,” instead of admitting the pain they feel. On the flip side, you should also avoid being dishonest about the accident or your injuries. You should not exaggerate or lie about your injuries. Additionally, if you are asked a question regarding how the accident occurred and you are not sure of the answer, simply say that you don’t know.
5. Releasing Medical Records
Never sign a medical release form without having your personal injury attorney review it. It is common for insurance agents to ask you to sign a release for access to your medical records and represent it as a normal part of settling your claim. You do not want to give access to information that could be used against you, so it is wise to involve your lawyer before you sign anything.
Contact the personal injury attorneys at the Law Office of Alex Cha & Associates for the help you need. We can walk you through the steps you need to take to obtain the full and fair compensation you deserve for your injuries and damages.