After a serious injury, most people are a bit dazed and unable to fully process all of the information they are facing. From hospital bills and medical diagnoses, to insurance adjusters calling and being absent from work, it can be a scary time for an accident victim. This is especially true if the injured person is also the primary income earner for a family. Something as common as a broken leg can put someone out of work for weeks or even months. This is particularly true of blue collar workers and those who perform physical labor for a living.
Given the amount of things injured people must deal with in the days and weeks following a serious injury, it is no wonder that insurance companies are often able to take advantage of people and deny claims. The attorneys of Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC want you to know your rights so you can avoid these costly mistakes after an injury. Remember, if you are injured by someone else’s negligent or careless behavior, you have a right to demand that they make it right. We may be able to help. Call us today for a free consultation with an attorney.
Here are five things you should never do after a serious injury:
Do Not Speak With the Insurance Company Directly
First and foremost, never speak with the opposing party’s insurance carrier directly. Do not give a recorded statement. Do not answer questions about your injuries. Do not answer questions about how the injury happened. Think of it this way: The insurance company is collecting information in order to figure out if they have any legal way of denying the claim and avoiding paying for your injuries. Why help them? If they lie and tell you that you have to speak with them, just remember that a jury, not the insurance company, has the ultimate authority to decide the value of your claim. If you can resolve it with the insurance company, great, but it is best to let an attorney do that for you.
Do Not Admit Fault to Anyone
Never admit fault at the scene, to police, or to anyone. Despite what insurance companies may tell you, you are entitled to compensation even if you are partly to blame for your injuries. In most states, your compensation can be reduced, but you may still have a right to be paid for your injury. Talk to a lawyer before accepting fault for anything.
Do Not Sign paperwork You do Not Understand
Never sign anything without talking to a lawyer. Some injured people have received paperwork within days of a car accident or other injury. The insurance company may claim that they are going to pay your medical bills and that they just need you to sign a release, letting them get your bills. This is not the real reason for wanting you to sign a healthcare records release.
The real reason is that they are looking for evidence that you may have been under the influence of drugs or alcohol or evidence of prior injuries or conditions that may demonstrate that your injuries were pre-existing. They need your authorization in order to search through your past for such evidence. In some cases, insurance companies have used these tactics to pull medical records from decades before an injury in order to deny a claim.
Do Not Settle Your Case Without a Lawyer
If you inadvertently settle a claim with the insurance company, you may later discover that they did not actually pay all your medical bills or that they left liens unpaid. This could mean you actually end up owing money, even after a settlement.
Do Not Go on Social Media
Perhaps the worst thing you can do after an injury is go on social media and discuss it or post pictures about it. Insurance companies use clever surveillance experts to search for things like photos, comments, or posts that could reveal the nature or severity of the injury
If you are suffering after a serious motor vehicle crash, a medical mistake, or some other form of injury, there is no harm in calling a personal injury lawyer from Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC. We take the time to learn about your injury and offer you practical advice for how to resolve your situation. There is no risk and no pressure. If there is nothing we can do, we will let you know upfront. If we can help, we will let you know that, too. This way you can obtain representation right away, and you will owe us nothing unless we can recover money on your behalf. So give our team a call today.