In 2019, U.S. drivers reported more than 6.5 million automobile accidents to the police. According to Driving-Tests, more than 1.9 million of these accidents resulted in injuries, and more than 33,000 involved a death.
Many people fail to seek the compensation they are entitled to after a car accident because of false beliefs about the compensation process. They believe claiming compensation will be costly, time-consuming, and complex. Or they believe they are already guaranteed compensation or can count on insurance to meet their needs. Some think lawyers are extraneous, whereas others avoid filing because they fear they will cause another person financial ruin.
The most common myths about compensation for accident victims lead to lost opportunities for people who have been injured by another party’s negligence — opportunities that could mean the difference between them being able to pay their medical bills and a mountain of debt.
Many lawyers will work at little cost to you, often representing clients on a contingency basis, meaning they don’t charge a fee unless their clients receive compensation. Also, some insurance policies include a “legal defense clause” that provides money for you to hire a lawyer outside your insurance company. Filing a claim may involve court hearings, but generally, claims settle without your having to appear in court.
No law guarantees that you’ll receive compensation. Often the party at fault will dispute the claim. And compensation isn’t guaranteed even if you were not at fault. The driver who caused the accident might be uninsured or underinsured. Even when the driver has adequate insurance, their insurance company will deny responsibility by blaming you or downplaying your injuries.
The truth is that insurance companies are businesses that must make a profit to satisfy investors. They have every incentive to offer a low settlement or avoid settling entirely. A lawyer specializing in personal injury cases can help you fight against this low-balling and receive fair compensation.
In reality, insurance companies often offer low settlements, sometimes much less than the amount required to treat injuries properly and recover lost wages. Despite the promises they make in their commercials, their main goal is to make a profit, not to help you.
Some people mistakenly believe that the driver at fault will have to pay any financial settlement out of their pocket. They avoid filing for the compensation they need because they don’t want to hurt someone else, especially if the at-fault driver is a friend or family member. In truth, however, the person’s insurance company will pay the settlement in most cases.
Obtaining money to cover your medical expenses, property damage, and lost wages isn’t greedy. Medical bills can add up quickly. Injured people need these expenses covered so that they and their families don’t suffer a financial hardship on top of the injury. Also, holding a negligent person responsible for their actions may encourage them to be more careful in the future.
The truth is that passengers in the cars of those who cause an accident can file to have medical expenses and lost wages covered. Some passengers may be reluctant to seek compensation if a friend or family member is driving, but they should know that the insurance company, and not their friend, generally will pay the settlement.
Taking specific steps after a car accident can protect your eligibility for compensation. Here are steps to take at the scene:
Before leaving the scene of the accident, you should do the following:
Contacting an experienced car accident lawyer when you have a claim will help you achieve the best outcome. Personal injury attorneys advocate for clients with insurance companies every day. They have the knowledge and experience to analyze your claim and fight for what you need to be made whole again after an accident. They can significantly bolster your chances of receiving fair compensation.
The Ward Law Group has represented hundreds of Floridians who have suffered from physical, mental, or emotional issues resulting from car accidents. We fight hard for our clients, ensuring that their settlements provide them with the maximum compensation possible. We provide a free consultation and charge no fee unless you recover compensation. We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and specialize in serving the Hispanic community in South and Central Florida. Contact us today.
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