After your car has been towed and you have been to the doctor comes the part of an auto accident that most people hate the most: dealing with insurance. While every car accident is different, there are several common mistakes that people make when they have a car accident claim.
Not Doing Your Own Research
If the insurance company has declared your vehicle a total loss, the value of your car must be determined. The insurance company will almost always attempt to determine the value, but be wary of their estimate. The mistake many people make is to simply accept the insurance company’s value without doing their own research. An offer from the insurance company is just an offer. If you can demonstrate your car was worth more than they are offering, you may be able to get more for your car.
Negotiating a Settlement Yourself
On a basic level, it may not seem like it should be that hard to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company for property damage, your medical costs, and your pain and suffering. After all, you may feel that you have access to all the data, and you were the one in the accident.
In reality, however, you often do not have all of the pertinent information. You may have been in a handful of car accidents in your life, but the adjuster you are dealing with has handled hundreds of auto accidents if not more. Your insurance company also has data from tens of thousands of car accidents that tells them what people are willing to settle for. Additionally, they may also have uncovered facts in their investigation to which you are not privy. It is a mistake to try and negotiate your own settlement. Personal injury law is complex, and the insurance companies understand it much better than you do.
Taking Too Long to Consult With a Lawyer
Sometimes life is too busy and the insurance company is too difficult to deal with to get a case settled. The weeks turn into months, and the months start to turn into years. Illinois has a strict time limit on when car accident claims must be filed to preserve your rights. In most cases, your action must be filed within two years of the date of the accident.
Many people wait too long to get a lawyer involved. This can result in the loss of important evidence, access to witnesses, and, in the worst cases, any chance of collecting compensation for your injuries.
If you or someone you love has been hurt in a car accident, contact an experienced Kane County personal injury attorney right away. You only have so much time to bring a claim. Call the law firm of Kinnally Flaherty Krentz Loran Hodge & Masur, P.C. at 630-907-0909 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation today.