Were you hurt in a wreck and you’re trying to figure out how to get paid after a car accident? Read this article to find out more.
Did you know that motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of post-traumatic stress disorder?
PTSD is not the only thing car accident victims have to deal with, though, because they are often left with hefty medical bills, lost wages, and a lot more. If you’re going through this harrowing experience, it’s only right that you get full compensation, and soon, so that you can take care of all these matters.
If someone else caused your injuries, it’s important to know how to get paid after a car accident, and how long it’ll take to get the payment. The choices you make in the minutes, days, and weeks following the car accident will determine the value of your claim.
In this guide, we’ll help you understand how to get paid after a car accident and how to go about it.
Remain at the Scene of the Accident
It’s vital for you to remain at the scene of the accident and call the police for assistance. Wait for the police to arrive and only leave once they are done conducting their investigation and telling you it’s okay to go. You need to provide your registration and contact information to the other involved parties and to the police. If you were injured, they’ll help you get to a hospital for assistance.
Gather Information at the Scene
If possible, gathering information at the scene will go a long way into helping you get compensation. Do this without getting in the way of the first responders and get information about the other parties involved as well. It’s essential for you to note down this information as soon as possible because if they leave the scene, you may not get compensated.
Write down their contact information, address, insurance information, and vehicle information. During this process, avoid talking about who was at fault or how you contributed to the accident because even innocent statements could reduce the value of your claim. If you’re in a position to do so, take photos and video of the accident scene from every possible vantage, so you have proof of exactly what it looks like.
Obtain witness information as well as they may have seen how the accident unfolded and could have valuable information. If you can collect their contact information, even better because you and your attorney can follow up on them. Obtain any video evidence possible, either from witnesses of security cameras before they get deleted as they could be of great help.
Seek Medical Treatment
If you or your loved one suffered severe injuries, you’ll need to go to the nearest emergency room for treatment. For minor car accident injury, the paramedics will give you first aid.
If you remain conscious and feel like you’re okay, don’t forego medical treatment because to get compensation, you’ll need proof of injury suffered.
Medical documentation of all your injuries is one of the most vital pieces of evidence. Besides, even if you have minor scratches and bruises, you may have other symptoms that appear days after the accident. You need to get a medical examination right away to protect both your health and rights.
Report the Accident to Your Insurance
Even if you were not the one at fault, you need to report the accident to your insurance carrier and inform them about your injuries and damages to your car. Keep in mind that most insurance companies, even your carrier, will look for ways to avoid paying your benefits, so be careful what you say about the accident and who was at fault. In this case, having a professional lawyer will be a big help because they’ll advise you about what to say and what to leave out.
Keep All Bills
If you want to know how to get paid after an accident, then keeping bills is a good way to help the case. Keep all bills related to your medical treatment and car repair because the more proof you have, the higher the chances of getting the compensation you deserve. If the injuries keep you from working either temporarily or permanently, keep your payroll information.
Document any changes you make in your life due to the accident, such as hiring a caretaker or installing wheelchair ramps in your home. Keep a journal and document all your injuries and recovery process to increase the amount you might get. Beyond that, don’t miss any doctor appointments so you can have a consistent record.
Don’t Accept a Settlement Without a Lawyer
Getting paid after a car accident means that you could settle out of court. It’s important that you never accept a settlement offer without consulting with an attorney first.
Insurance companies and defense attorneys rarely play fair. Once they discover you don’t have legal representation they try to convince you that you were at fault, and the low settlement they are giving you is a favor.
Their major goal is to get off the hook and pay as little money as possible. It’s tempting to take the money, especially when you start to feel the financial pressure of paying your medical bills and everything else, but hire a lawyer and ensure the other party is not trying to take advantage of you.
Avoid Talking About Your Accident
Avoid talking to other people about the accident or even posting it on social media. Even if you’re dealing with investigators, ensure you have a legal representative with you so they can advise you accordingly. One innocent statement could reduce the value of your claim or ruin everything for you.
Factors That Determine How Long It Takes to Get Compensation
Getting paid after a car accident is not that straightforward because a lot of factors come into play when determining how long it’ll take to get the compensation. If you agree on a settlement instead of going to court, the process will be shorter, but if you go to court, it’ll take longer. If liability is clear and it’s evident who was at fault, the process may be quicker, but not so much if it’s not.
Beyond that, the insurance company involved and the defense attorney could play a major role in this. Some insurance companies drag out the process as long as possible, hoping that the victim will give up and accept the settlement on offer. If a government official is involved, it may take even longer, and if Medicare or Medicaid is involved, it may take longer since you’ll need to settle the lien.
How to Get Paid After a Car Accident: Hire a Professional Car Accident Attorney
Now you know how to get paid after a car accident. One of the best steps you could take after a car accident is hiring a professional car accident attorney. They know how to navigate car accident cases and how to deal with stubborn insurance companies, which will speed up the process. This means you’ll get the compensation you deserve much faster.
For more informative posts, please explore our website further.