The ripple effects of your car accident can be more impactful than you expect. The financial consequences associated with missed work and medical treatment can rock your financial stability, and the emotional and psychological impact can leave you with the need for ongoing mental health treatment. Figuring out how to deal with these losses can be overwhelmingly stressful, but there are steps that you can take to try to find relief.
One of the biggest and most important is to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the driver responsible for your wreck. But even if the evidence seems straightforward here, your claim isn’t going to be automatic. In fact, there are several missteps that you can make along the way, any one of which could jeopardize even the most straightforward case.
Mistakes to avoid in your personal injury lawsuit
There are a lot of mistakes that can be made in a personal injury lawsuit. Fortunately, many of them are avoidable. Let’s look at some of the biggest mistakes that you’ll want to avoid:
- Not seeking treatment: Too many car accident victims try to tough out their injuries, and thereby forego medical treatment. But this prevents you from creating the medical record and evidence you need to support your request for damages. So, make sure you seek out medical treatment in a timely fashion.
- Not following doctor recommendations: Even if you seek out immediate medical treatment, your failure to follow your doctor’s recommendations can still cut you short when you seek compensation for your ongoing treatment needs. That’s why you’ll want to do exactly what your doctor says you need to do.
- Talking to insurance companies: Although you won’t be able to totally avoid talking to insurance companies during the personal injury lawsuit process, you’ll want to control when and how you communicate with them. The insurance company might try to get you to give a recorded statement, which you should avoid.
Also, when talking to them, you should be careful that you don’t make any statements that could be indicative of assuming fault, as that could trigger contributory negligence arguments. Just stick to the facts and consider letting your attorney do the talking for you.
- Not talking to witnesses: You need to prepare as if your case is going to trial. This means that you’ll want to talk to witnesses who both help and hurt your case. Only then are you going to know how to develop your claim in a persuasive fashion.
- Posting on social media: Social media can be a great place to connect with others and vent your emotions. But the defense in your case might scour your social media to see if they can find evidence showing that your accident injuries aren’t as severe as you claim them to be. Even if you think there’s nothing like that on your social media pages, your posts and pictures can be taken out of context. So, think about staying off social media until your case is over.
- Settling too quickly: Most personal injury cases settle before they’re fully litigated in court. But if you’re offered a settlement, be sure to fully vet it so that you’re not accepting something that’s worth far less than the extent of your damages.
Don’t be your own worst enemy in your car accident case
Although there are a lot of mistakes that can be made in your personal injury case, you can work to avoid them and build the compelling claim that you need to be successful. But it’s going to take a lot of preparation and knowledge of the law. By starting to build your claim now, you can tackle those issues and increase your chances of imposing liability and recovering the compensation you deserve.