In 2022, according to statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation, there were 555,229 total crashes statewide. Getting hurt in a traffic accident can be an emotional and overwhelming experience. However, what you do – or do not do – after the incident can have a significant impact on the outcome of your claims. Therefore, if you were involved in a car accident, knowing what to avoid doing can help ensure that you do not hurt your case unintentionally.
Here at my firm, I’m ready and poised to support, guide, and represent clients in their car accident cases. At K.E. Bradley Attorney & Counselor at Law, I can help you through the next steps after an accident and advise you of common mistakes to avoid. Also, I can help file your injury claims and attempt to pursue the maximum possible financial compensation for your damages. My firm proudly represents clients across Missouri City, Katy, Friendswood, Fresno, and Pearland, Texas.
Common Mistakes to Avoid After a Car Accident
As mentioned earlier, the steps you take or fail to take after a car accident can affect your ability to seek damages and the amount of compensation you can receive. Here are some of the common mistakes to avoid after an auto accident and a brief explanation:
Not Seeking Medical Help Right Away
Getting prompt medical attention after a car accident is imperative for your safety, health, proper documentation, and other legal reasons. Even if you only sustained minor injuries or you feel fine after the crash, you should still get adequate medical treatment. A qualified physician can examine your current health situation, detect any hidden injuries and symptoms, offer suitable treatment, or refer you to a specialist.
Not Calling the Police to the Scene of the Accident
Under Texas law, a driver involved in a car accident that results in an injury, death of a person, or property damages of over $1,000 must call law enforcement to the accident scene or file a report with the nearest police department. Failure to report may result in legal consequences. Also, you may lose your police report and other crucial evidence you may need in your claims or lawsuit.
Also, do not apologize or admit guilt after a car accident. Saying you’re sorry may infer that you take responsibility and admit guilt for the incident. The insurer may use this as evidence that you caused the crash to deny or undervalue your claims. Likewise, the other driver may file a lawsuit against you. Essentially, you only need to give a detailed description and other information about that incident to the police.
Not Taking the Time to Gather Evidence/Pictures
Furthermore, in order to prove fault and establish liability in your claims, you will need as much evidence as possible. It is vital to start collecting valuable evidence immediately after the crash. You need to collect and document accident scene photos, witness testimonies, and police reports. In addition, document your medical reports and personal account of the accident as soon as you can.
Waiting Too Long to File a Claim/Lawsuit
It is advisable not to wait too long to file an injury claim or lawsuit. The statute of limitations (time limit) for filing an accident claim in Texas is two years from the date of the incident. Time passes by quickly, and you need to file as soon as possible. In addition, as your continue to delay, you may misplace vital documentation or forget relevant information about your accident case.
Giving a Recorded Statement to the Insurance Company
Also, never give a recorded statement to the claims adjuster or insurance company. They’re in business to make money and can’t protect your best interests. Moreover, the insurance adjuster can ask inconsistent questions to create contradictions, take your words out of context, or misinterpret your statements. Thus, they can use these against you in court or to undervalue your claims.
Not Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney
Finally, do not file your insurance claims or navigate the personal injury claims process all on your own. Rather, you should retain a skilled car accident attorney to investigate all of the facts of your case, evaluate the extent of your injuries, and estimate case value. In addition, your legal counsel can help file your claims, seek to prove negligence, negotiate a fair settlement with the insurer, or take additional legal action if necessary.
Make Informed Decisions With an Attorney’s Guidance
Having experienced legal representation in your car accident claims is crucial to protect your rights and improve your prospects of a favorable outcome. I have devoted my career to offering outstanding legal services and handling personal injury cases. Using my broad knowledge, I can walk you through the often-complicated Texas claims process. Above all, I will advocate for your best interests, hold the negligent party liable, and help you seek the financial justice you deserve.
Call me at K.E. Bradley, Attorney & Counselor at Law, today to schedule a simple case evaluation with an experienced car accident lawyer. I can offer you the highly-personalized legal counsel and compassionate representation you need in your auto accident case. My firm is proud to serve clients across Missouri City, Katy, Sugar Land, Friendswood, Fresno, and Pearland, Texas.