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Posted in Uncategorized on February 27, 2016   |  by Gary Burger

6 Common Mistakes When Settling Your Personal Injury Claim

Although the at-fault insurance driver's company may seem pleasant and reasonable, always remember that they are paid to delay, limit and defeat you claim for compensation. The adjusters have their own team of legal experts advising their every move. You should always remember that you have the legal right to be financially restored to the position you occupied prior to the accident.

Follow these 6 tips to insure that you don't settle for anything less than fair and full compensation.

  1. Don't delay your care. Any delay in medical treatment can sink or swim your injury claim with the insurance company. Their team of legal experts will argue that any delay in treatment is evidence that your claim isn't serious. Instead, you should seek immediate medical attention following the accident. Because the shock and adrenaline of being involved in an accident can mask the pain for days, it is important to seek attention right away even if you aren't sure that you hurt badly.
  2. Don't give a recorded statement. The first thing that the insurance company will do is to try and get a recorded statement from the drivers. Many people are simply unaware that they have the right to refuse. The adjuster taking the statement will be an expert at getting you to sign away your claim when you give the recorded statement, so make sure to simply not give one.
  3. Don't sign a medical release. The at-fault driver's insurance company will do everything in their power to get you to sign a release that allows the company to collect your medical records. Often, they are attempting to look for past injuries and past care that can weaken your claim for compensation. If you are speaking with the insurance company, they will make you believe that this is standard procedure. In reality, you have no legal obligation to do so and shouldn't.
  4. Don't wait for the at-fault driver's insurance company to accept liability before you seek additional care. Often, people will wait to seek the treatment that they need until after the defendant's insurance company has accepted liability. This is a mistake that plays right into the hands of the insurance company, which is expert at using delay tactics to limit recovery. Use your own health insurance to seek care. It is more important to your claim that you receive care at all than who provides it. If you don't have insurance, you should contact Burger Law so we can negotiate your treatment on a lien basis.
  5. Don't accept money from the insurance company before you have finished treatment. Once your claim has been settled, you cannot do anything to get more money. If you accept money and sign a release, that bars you from any further recovery. Even if your injury doesn't manifest until well down the line, once you have signed the release, there can be no means of getting it paid for after the claim has been released. If the insurance company sends you a check for settlement and you have not asked for it, do not cash it.
  6. Don't discuss the accident on social media. Even if it feels harmless to update family and friends on the status of your claim, the insurance company will often use whatever you post against you. If you share anything that can be taken out of context to harm your claim, rest assured the insurance company will try to do so.