A severe car accident can throw your life into a whirlwind of chaos, and it’s easy to make mistakes that could harm your personal injury case in the following days and weeks. However, it’s crucial to minimize mistakes as best you can, as you only have one chance to recover compensation for your injuries.
The Clinton Township car accident attorneys at Mihelich & Kavanaugh, PLC have decades of experience protecting the rights of Michigan residents. We’ve seen it all and know what errors can doom a car accident claim. Below is a list of five common mistakes to avoid after a Michigan car accident.
Mistake #1: Not Hiring a Capable Attorney
An experienced car accident attorney brings several critical advantages to the table. For starters, they understand the intricacies of personal injury law that can make or break a case. A lawyer can assess the full extent of your losses – including medical bills, lost wages, car repairs, and emotional distress – to help you recover a fair settlement.
In addition, an attorney can shoulder the burden of managing your claim so you can focus on your recovery. This includes gathering evidence, negotiating with insurance adjusters, and even representing you in court if necessary. Finally, an attorney can act as your advocate, standing up for your rights and interests in an often complex and adversarial process.
Mistake #2: Not Letting Your Attorney Talk to the Insurance Companies
While insurance companies may seem friendly and eager to help, it’s essential to remember that their primary goal is to protect their bottom line. They are, after all, businesses looking to minimize payouts and maximize profits. That’s where your lawyer comes in.
Lawyers have the knowledge and training to maneuver through the often-complex language and tactics insurance companies use. For example, insurance adjusters may ask misleading questions to get you to say something that could hurt your claim. An experienced attorney knows how to respond to these questions effectively and professionally to ensure your rights and potential compensation are not jeopardized.
Mistake #3: Talking About Your Case on Social Media
When it comes to car accidents, broadcasting crash details or your thoughts on social media platforms can lead to significant complications in your personal injury claim. Insurance companies may use your posts as evidence against your claim. Seemingly innocent statements about the accident can be misconstrued or taken out of context to undermine your case.
Discussing the accident online could inadvertently lead you to admit fault or liability. Even a simple “I didn’t see the other car coming” could be used against you, as it might suggest that you weren’t paying attention to the road. Given these risks, it’s best to avoid the potential pitfalls by refraining from discussing your accident online.
Mistake #4: Not Following Your Treatment Plan
Following your prescribed treatments after a car accident is crucial for several reasons. From a health perspective, your doctor provides treatment plans to help you recover as effectively and safely as possible. Ignoring or neglecting these instructions can delay your recovery or even lead to more severe health complications.
From a legal standpoint, not following your doctor’s advice can negatively impact your personal injury claim. When assessing your claim, insurance adjusters and courts look at your medical records to determine the severity of your injuries and their impact on your life. If you fail to follow prescribed treatments, they might argue that your injuries are not as serious as you claim or that you’re not doing your part to recover.
Mistake #5: Waiting Too Long to Hire a Lawyer
The legal process has certain time limits dictated by Michigan’s statute of limitations. You typically have three years from the accident date to file a personal injury lawsuit. If you miss this window, you might lose your right to seek compensation entirely.
Evidence that can strengthen your case may disappear or become less reliable over time. This includes physical evidence from the accident scene, vehicle damage, and witness memories. An attorney can help preserve and gather this evidence, but the sooner they start, the better.
The Clinton Township car accident attorneys at Mihelich & Kavanaugh, PLC can help you avoid mistakes and recover the money you need after a crash. Call 586-465-3701 or complete our online contact form for a free consultation.