What Should You Not Do In A Personal Injury Case?

Personal Injury Case

What Should You Not Do In A Personal Injury Case?

Personal injury law can appear straightforward to the uninitiated. You get injured in a motor vehicle, construction, or slip-and-fall accident, you sue the at-fault party for loss of income, pain, and suffering, you collect your compensation cheque! All in short order. If only it was that simple.

Personal injury cases can take a long time to settle. In the meantime, you are likely not earning and have to foot the bill for your treatment. Whatever happens with your personal injury claim, you don’t want to be the reason you don’t get the compensation you deserve.

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    Mistakes To Avoid In A Personal Injury Case

    Insurance companies have no motivation to pay full, fair, and swift compensation in personal injury cases. In many cases, though, it is the actions you take or neglect immediately after the accident or injury that hurt your chances of fair compensation. What are these actions?

    1. Failing to document evidence

    Success with personal injury claims hinges on one thing; evidence. Personal injury law seeks to make you whole again, oftentimes through financial compensation. So you need to document your losses.

    The amount of monetary damages you can be awarded depends on how well you can prove the extent to which the injury affected your life. And to prove anything, you need evidence. This evidence usually takes the form of expert testimony by a medical doctor or eyewitness accounts.

    The evidence you collect at the scene of the accident or soon after can boost your case immensely. It could be physical evidence or documentary evidence like police reports, photographs or video recordings of the injury event, or recorded calls placed with police or emergency services in the aftermath of the accident. You must collect this evidence early before it gets contaminated or tampered with.

    Other important forms of evidence you should document include leave of absence requests you made at work after the injury, medical bills for therapy and treatment received, correspondence with your insurance company, and any records of the event that you can get from the fire department.

    2. Lying or exaggerating your injuries

    It may seem that exaggerating the extent of your injuries or the pain and suffering caused by an accident can help your argument for a hefty compensation. On the contrary, it can hamper your chances.

    Stick to the truth when filing claims and giving evidence in court and resist the temptation to exaggerate the extent of your injuries. Injury claims aren’t an opportunity for financial gain. They are an instrument for just compensation.

    Judges don’t take kindly to dishonest plaintiffs. Neither do insurance companies tolerate falsified or exaggerated claims. In fact, you could be charged for insurance fraud and have your claim voided. 

    How do they prove you aren’t as injured as you claim? Through those jovial pictures you post on your Facebook when you are supposed to be writhing in pain somewhere. So, avoid social media, too.

    3. Taking too long to file your case

    This is one of the easiest ways to weaken your personal injury case. If you take too long to file your case, it can get difficult to locate witnesses. Some may not even recall all the details of the event and may no longer be as keen to give evidence. Documents may also get lost or buried by the passage of time.

    Consult a personal injury lawyer immediately after the accident for the best guidance on your available options. A lawyer will also ensure you get the necessary support you need through your treatment and therapy.

    4. Not seeking medical care and ignoring medical advice

    Personal injury law in Ontario penalizes what it calls contributory negligence. These are inactions that can harm your chances of a speedy recovery from an accident or which might prolong your pain and suffering. 

    The law places a duty on you to take the necessary steps to mitigate the financial impact of the accident, which in this case can be through prompt treatment to avert complications or any prolonged pain and suffering. If established, contributory negligence can reduce the amount you get in monetary damages.

    5. Signing anything without consulting your lawyer

    Before taking any action regarding your personal injury claim, make sure you talk to a competent lawyer first. Most importantly, don’t sign any settlement with the insurance company before first seeking the advice of your lawyer.

    Insurance companies want to pay as little compensation as possible and will often dangle a settlement early to turn your head. Often the settlement they offer is well below what a lawyer can get you. 

    Don’t listen when they say involving a lawyer will only complicate things. In the same vein, fight back if they try to impose their own choice of lawyer on you. Only engage a lawyer if you believe they are right for you.

    In fact, the fact the insurance company is quick to settle is an admission that your chances of a large settlement are good. You will most likely settle out of court anyway, but let a lawyer handle the negotiation. So never settle without a lawyer and until you have had a thorough examination of your physical and psychological injuries.

    Choose A Competent Personal Injury Lawyer

    Personal Injury cases can be incredibly complicated and have the potential to drag on for a long time. You need a resilient and experienced lawyer who will stay the course. We, personal injury lawyers, aren’t equally skilled and experienced. Some are novices with barely any experience.

    Give yourself the best chance at fair and full compensation by seeking legal advice early. De Da personal injury lawyers have distinguished themselves through the settlements we have achieved for our clients. We will answer all your questions and will be by your side all the way. Talk to a personal injury lawyer here.

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