It is natural to feel distressed and distraught in the wake of an Atlanta crash, and mistakes will happen. This is particularly so when the crash involves injuries. However, it is important not to make certain mistakes at this crucial time. These are the mistakes that can jeopardize your chances of recovering compensatory damages from the at-fault driver. An Atlanta car accident lawyer can best guide you on how to proceed after the crash.
Here is a look at some of the most common mistakes that you should avoid following a car crash. Avoiding these mistakes will help you significantly improve your odds of receiving damages.
Leaving the Crash Scene
As a crash victim, you may want to leave the crash scene for a variety of reasons. Perhaps the damage from the crash seems negligible, or the other driver has offered you quick cash to resolve the matter. In either case, it is never a good idea to leave the scene of the accident. It is always recommended that you report the crash to the authorities and then wait for the law enforcement officers to arrive.
Under Georgia Code 40-6-273, you are legally required to report an accident involving injury, death, or property damage of at least $500. Even if another driver caused the crash but you failed to report it, you may be held legally responsible alongside the other party. You can also report the wreck by visiting the nearest police station.
Refusing Medical Treatment
When the paramedics arrive on the scene of an accident, you must always receive medical treatment as a victim. If there are no visible injuries, you may be tempted to brush away the offer for medical attention. However, the problem is that many internal injuries transpire hours, days, or even weeks later. So even if you have no apparent injuries right after the accident, you may come to know that you have internal injuries later.
If you refuse medical treatment on the spot, the insurance company can later use it as an excuse to show that you had no injuries at all. Even if you had internal injuries which became known later, the insurer can argue that the injuries you noted later were not related to the accident. This can make it harder for you to recover compensatory damages.
Not Following the Doctor’s Advice
Once you have been injured in a car crash, it is imperative that you follow the directions of your treating doctor. This means taking the prescribed medication, undergoing physical therapy, making sure you put in at the designated dates, and otherwise ensuring that you follow the doctor’s advice on your path to healing and recovery.
If you don’t follow the doctor’s advice, this can delay your healing process and worsen your injuries. At the same time, the insurer of the at-fault driver can argue that your injuries were not as severe but that your negligence had made them so. This argument can be used to lower the amount of compensatory damages.
Talking to the Insurance Company
The insurance company is typically represented by an insurance adjuster when your car crash claim is being processed. The adjuster is tasked with trying to lower your settlement amount as much as possible. So the adjuster can use any information you share or remarks you make to raise unfair objections about your claim.
This is why it is never a good idea to share any more than the most essential details with the adjuster. Better still, make sure you have a lawyer by your side when you speak to the adjuster.
Not Getting Any Legal Help
Once you decide to file a car crash claim, you must first create a demand letter and send it to the insurer. The insurance company then initiates a round of negotiations before deciding whether to pay you and what amount to pay you. Without legal help, you may be at a disadvantage as the insurer typically has an entire legal team at its disposal.
With a lawyer by your side, you are able to negotiate a fair amount of damages and counter any unfair objections raised by the company. A lawyer’s presence also prevents the insurance company from acting in bad faith.
Why Hire an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer?
If you have suffered crash-related losses such as vehicle damage or injuries in an Atlanta wreck, we can help you. Here at Ted Greve & Associates, our lawyers negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf. We also advise you throughout the claims process to ensure you don’t make any mistakes. Our ultimate aim is to secure the best possible amount of compensation for your crash-related losses. Connect with us today to discuss your Atlanta crash claim with our lawyers.