4 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Car Accident Case
If your injuries were the result of someone else’s negligence (careless or irresponsible actions) in a car accident, then you have the right to sue that person and request damages to cover the financial losses you suffered because of their actions. It is important to work with a lawyer, though, so that you don’t end up making mistakes that could disqualify your lawsuit or reduce the amount of money that you can get. You don’t have to have a flawless driving record to win a car accident lawsuit, and you don’t have to be an expert in the law, but the earlier in the process you contact a South Carolina car accident lawyer, the better your chances of getting compensation.
Giving a Recorded Statement to the Other Driver’s Insurance Company
The best time to contact a car accident lawyer is within the first few days after the accident. The first thing you should do is get your injuries evaluated and treated, but contacting a lawyer should come soon after. Sometime in the weeks following your accident, the other driver’s insurance company will call you and ask to take a recorded statement. You should not give one, because the insurance company will use everything you say to find reasons to offer you less money. You should ask the insurance company to call your lawyer instead.
Signing the First Offer Letter You Receive from the Other Driver’s Insurance Company
The other driver’s insurance company will send you a settlement offer letter, offering the amount of money it thinks it should pay you. If you are seriously injured, then the amount will probably not be enough to cover your medical bills and lost income. If you sign the letter, you cannot later file a lawsuit. Instead, you should bring the unsigned letter to a lawyer and discuss your options for getting a better settlement.
Waiting Too Long to File a Lawsuit
The deadline for filing a car accident lawsuit is three years after the date of the accident. Don’t wait that long before contacting a lawyer. The best time to contact a lawyer is as soon as you find out that accident-related expenses are a serious financial burden to you.
Holding Out for a Settlement or Judgment That Will Make You Rich
Most car accident cases do not go to trial; in fact, jury trials are a last resort in car accident lawsuits. Your lawyer will first try to negotiate with the other driver’s car insurance company and with other parties who could be held liable for your losses. If you file a lawsuit, there is a long period of discovery, in which the parties collect and exchange evidence. Many cases settle during the discovery phase, once the defendant becomes convinced that you would win if the case went to trial. You have probably seen news stories about injured plaintiffs who won multimillion-dollar settlements in car accident lawsuits, but you do not want to be them. Those plaintiffs suffered permanent disability because of their car accident injuries, and they had to fight for years to get the damages award. A settlement without a trial doesn’t mean that you lose; it means your lawyer was able to convince the defendant to pay you a fair price.
Contact Us Today for Help
Whether you contact a Columbia car accident lawyer immediately after the accident or only after months of trying to keep up with the medical bills on your own, the attorneys at The Stanley Law Group can help. Contact The Stanley Law Group for a consultation on your case.