Building The Strongest Possible Injury Claim
The steps you take after a motor vehicle accident matter. Insurance companies will attempt to challenge every possible aspect of an injury claim, and so it is crucial to follow the proper procedures — both official and unofficial — in your efforts to receive compensation.
With offices in Winchester and Prince William County, and serving throughout northern Virginia, the attorneys at Parthemos & Curran, PLLC, have provided guidance to injury victims for several decades. We understand the law; we understand how insurers approach injury matters; we know what it takes to help our clients avoid mistakes and maximize their claims.
5 Steps To Follow
Drawing from more than 75 years of combined experience, our attorneys have identified several steps that individuals should take immediately after an auto accident. They include:
- Take pictures of the scene — If you have been in a car collision, it is unlikely that your first thought concerns gathering evidence. Yet documenting the scene is crucial to building a successful claim, and smartphones and similar devices have proved invaluable to this end. If you are able, take pictures of your injuries, the damage to your car, the license plates and insurance cards of everyone involved, and any unusual road markings or damage to surrounding property.
- Don’t admit fault — Never admit fault after an auto accident. Taking responsibility for a collision will deprive you greatly of your ability to collect an injury claim. Moreover, it is often unclear who, exactly, is at fault in a car accident. In many cases, individuals who believe themselves responsible turn out to have been complete victims, after all.
- Obtain a police statement — Statements from law enforcement officers provide an objective and official account of an accident’s occurrence. As such, these statements can be invaluable in negotiations and in court. In seemingly minor accidents, officers may be reluctant to issue statements. Yet it is important to obtain as a means of bolstering your claim.
- Seek medical help immediately — Many individuals attempt to ‘walk off’ their injuries. This is understandable — medical costs are exorbitant, and it is common to do anything possible to avoid paying them. Yet the failure to obtain medical help directly after an accident will jeopardize one’s ability to file a successful injury claim later on; insurers equate a lack of treatment with a lack of injury. Oftentimes, victims are not immediately aware of the damage they have suffered, and so it is critical to find professional help.
- Continue your medical regimen — Likewise, it is important to follow your doctors’ advice thoroughly. If you fail to follow a physical therapy or prescription drug schedule, insurers will try to prove this means you are not severely hurt.