A car accident often causes several types of monetary damage. Medical bills, car repairs, rental car costs, and lost wages are a few examples. That’s why the injured party has the right to claim compensation from the at-fault party or, in most cases, their insurance provider. Unfortunately, it’s common for the settlement amount to not cover all your expenses.
When that happens, you may have to take money out of your own pocket for an accident you didn’t cause. The good news is there are much better ways your claim can end.
In particular, if you play your cards right, you can receive compensation that covers all the monetary damages you’ve suffered and more. Find out how in this article.
1. Seek The Help Of An Injury Lawyer
Seeking the help of professionals like those in the Yegendorf Law Firm is one of the most common tips you’ll receive from people who’ve been in your situation before. And here’s why:
- You’re not in the best shape to win the case, much less participate in it, if you’re injured. A lawyer acts as your representative in transactions you cannot attend.
- If you cannot come to a settlement agreement, you may have to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. If the defendant has a professional on their side, it’s no longer a matter of getting the most money out of the claim. Rather, it becomes a matter of whether you’ll receive any form of compensation at all.
- Every car accident is different and may vary in several aspects. One such aspect is the maximum settlement amount the victim can get from the at-fault party. A person who has yet to engage in a car accident claim will naturally struggle to understand how much is reasonable in their specific case. A lawyer is particularly useful in this regard.
2. Take All Kinds Of Medical Examinations
The settlement amount often depends on the damages you’ve suffered, be it physically, financially, or emotionally. Physical injuries are almost always accounted for as long as you receive medical treatment and present your medical records as proof. What most people forget is that emotional injury can also add to the settlement amount.
With that said, you should take medical examinations concerning your emotional state. If there’s any change in your emotional nature, that can lead to the conclusion that you received damage in that regard as well. And it deserves appropriate compensation.
3. Collect Evidence That You’re Not At Fault
Oftentimes, the injured party is too caught up trying to increase the settlement amount they can receive. However, one must remember that the amount can also decrease.
In many countries, there is what they call a partial fault. The idea is: just because one party is clearly the main cause of the accident doesn’t mean other parties have no fault. If you’re found to be partially at fault for the accident, the amount you’ll receive may decrease substantially.
All of a sudden, you go from making the most money out of the accident to getting just enough for your expenses. Of course, you’d want to avoid that scenario, and here’s how you can do it:
- Contact the witnesses in the location of the car accident and ask for their testimony. That’s why lawyers would often advise you to get the contact information of witnesses at the scene once you’re out of danger.
- Ask for videotapes taken by security cameras from the local authorities. It doesn’t have to be a camera directly on top of the scene. As long as it’s in the vicinity, it can provide useful information regarding the accident.
- Look for the officers who arrived at the scene after the accident. They should have also made a report regarding the accident. Ask for a copy of that police report.
If your goal is to receive compensation, it doesn’t matter who’s at fault. What matters is that it’s not you, and these tips should guarantee that the court will know the truth. A lawyer can also help in this regard as they can investigate the incident on your behalf.
4. Show Your Evidence As Soon As You Submit A Claim
When the at-fault party’s insurance provider hears that you’re filing a claim against them, they will immediately decide on an initial settlement amount. It’s the amount they’re willing to offer from the start of the negotiation. It generally depends on how confident they are to negotiate.
If they know you have nothing to prove, they would naturally offer a small amount. On the other hand, if they think you have clear evidence, they’ll offer a high amount right from the get-go.
That’s what you must aim for, so try to show your evidence as soon as you submit a claim, though it’s still best to save some for later. Again, a lawyer would know how to handle it best.
Even with all these tips, you must understand that getting the most money from a car accident takes time. The speed and amount of a settlement are almost always inversely proportional. If the insurance provider offers an amount immediately after you submit a claim, chances are that’s the lowest you can get. So, you may not notice the effects of these tips right away, but that doesn’t mean they won’t contribute and possibly get you a larger settlement amount in the end.