Even minor car accidents can cause bills to pile up—for a visit to the emergency room, to repair damage to your car, and even for taking time off work to get these things done. If you were injured in an accident, you may have the right to compensation. Many times, this will come in the form of a settlement.
It is important to note that just because you are entitled to compensation doesn’t mean the insurance company will hand it over easily.
Here are a few ways to make sure you get the most out of your car accident settlement.
Don’t Admit Fault
Florida’s no-fault car insurance rules allow anyone involved in an accident to recover compensation. That means you may be compensated regardless of whether you caused the accident or were the victim. However, you will not be able to file a personal injury case unless you were less responsible for the crash than the other party (such as if you were only 40% at fault, and they were 60% at fault).
You may find that your damages are more than what your no-fault insurance covers—if so, your best option for recovering your full compensation will likely be through a personal injury lawsuit. Admitting fault can wreck your chances of suing.
When at the scene of the accident, do your best to take as many pictures as possible. Take pictures of any damage done to your car, of the other person’s damaged or undamaged car, of your injuries, etc. You can use these pictures to back up your injury claim, as well as to debunk any false statements made by the other person.
Stay Off Social Media
Ranting on social media can be therapeutic. It is, however, best to avoid posting anything about your accident on a social media account. If you take legal action, an insurance defense attorney will easily find your account, even a burner account, and use anything you posted in regards to the accident against you.
Remember, their goal is to pay you as little as possible. Don’t give them free ammo to shoot down your case.
Seek Medical Help as Soon as Possible
If your injuries did not require emergency medical help, it is still a good idea to go to the doctor. Sadly, you may have sustained internal injuries without realizing it. The last thing you want is for a minor injury to progress into a serious one.
This can also strengthen your chances of getting a settlement by providing documentation of your accident-related injuries. The smaller the gap of time between the accident and the first doctor’s visit, the stronger the case.
Keep Track of Your Bills
To ensure you are compensated for all your financial damages, keep a record of all your bills related to the accident. They will serve as proof for your claim. What’s more, simply adding up your bills can give you a good idea of how much compensation you are owed. This will prevent you from taking a low settlement offer.
(Please note that this is just a baseline, however. Most accident victims are entitled to more compensation than they realize. For example, your bills will not show your lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.)
Many people find it helpful to have one folder for all their bills. You don’t need to be an expert at organizing. Simply, put all your bills in one place; an attorney can take care of the rest.
Hire an Experienced Attorney
This is one of the best ways to get the most out of your car accident settlement. An attorney can assess your damages and make sure you are asking for the maximum amount of compensation. They can also negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf, boosting your chances of getting a favorable settlement.
Insurance companies may want to avoid having to pay, but they also want to avoid going to court. Litigation is expensive, after all. Thus, a great attorney will know to prepare a trial-ready claim. If insurance fails to comply, no time will be wasted in taking them to court. Note that a settlement can be reached at any time up until a verdict is read.
At Schlesinger Law Offices, P.A., we have helped countless clients get the most out of their car accident settlements. In fact, we have a history of securing multimillion-dollar settlements and verdicts for those injured in Fort Lauderdale. If you have been injured, we want to help you too.
Learn more in a free consultation. Call our Fort Lauderdale accident lawyers at (954) 467-8800 or reach out to us online.