Car accidents, can leave you with a damaged car that needs repair or replacement, medical and rehabilitation expenses, bodily injuries, loss of wages and future earnings, and temporary or permanent disability. A car accident can, indeed, leave piles of debris behind, both literally and figuratively. You have the legal right to be compensated for the damages and injuries caused by a car accident that wasn’t your fault. Insurance companies will persuade you to accept an offer, which might not represent a fair amount of compensation.
Here is a guide on what you should do to get what you are rightfully entitled to in a car accident. These tips will help you to be prepared whether you make a claim to the insurance company by yourself or hire an auto accident lawyer.
1. Document everything. Take photographs of the scene and the damages to your car and your body. Write down the details of what happened while they are still fresh in your mind, for example: the traffic, the visibility, road conditions, time of day, the on coming traffic. Get the contact details and insurance information of the other party, as well as the contact details of any witnesses. Documentation will help you build your claim.
2. Calculate the real expenses and losses. This will include medical bills, lost wages and the cost of your vehicle’s repair. Insurance companies will provide you with an estimated cost but you need to check with different sources in order to get a fair quote based on the market standards.
3. Compute your potential losses and expenses. These losses include rehabilitative therapy, future wage losses and other losses on potential earnings from other sources.
4. Always take into consideration your non-financial or non-economic loss. It includes all physical, mental and emotional pain and suffering. It is the most difficult to estimate because it is subjective and may not be visible.
5. In certain cases, you may also be entitled to punitive damages in order to deter the other party from a similar type of negligence in the future. Punitive damages are meant to punish the driver for their actions.
6. It is always wise to consult with a lawyer who specializes in this area of law. Through a lawyer, your interests will be better served. You won’t have to go through the pain of dealing with the other party or the insurance company by yourself.