If you’ve recently been in an accident that was caused by the negligence or actions of another person, you have the right to seek compensation. But how much can you actually get? Every case is different, so it’s impossible to apply a general number. There are, however, some things that you should know. Here’s how you and your personal injury lawyer can ensure that you get fair compensation.
Ask a Personal Injury Lawyer: What Should I Do When Seeking a Settlement?
Work with a Qualified Lawyer
When you’re making any kind of legal claim, having a qualified lawyer on your side is important. Your lawyer will know all the ins and outs of the law and ensure that you get fair compensation for what you’ve been through.
Your lawyer will also take a look at your case and let you know what you can expect from your settlement. If you are offered an initial settlement from an insurance company and you don’t think it’s fair, your lawyer will also help you negotiate for something higher.
To get the most out of your settlement, you will first need to prove that you suffered an injury or damages. Further, you’ll also need to prove that these injuries or damages were caused by the accident you were in and that this accident was in turn caused by the negligence or actions of the other party.
As the plaintiff, the burden of proof falls upon you. Your Houston car wreck attorney can help you understand what kinds of evidence you may need, and they can help you gather this evidence, too. Things like photos of the scene as well as things like police and accident reports will help you support your case.
Seek Medical Treatment Right Away
If you have not already, you need to get medical treatment for your injuries. Even if you don’t believe that you have been hurt in your accident, there could be hidden injuries that might become bigger problems later.
As you are getting treatment for your injuries, keep track of all your doctor’s notes and medical bills. You and your lawyer will be able to use these documents to determine how much money you should get from your settlement, and they’ll be crucial to have when it comes time to negotiate.
Consider Your Mental Health
You’re likely to suffer more than just physical injuries when you get hurt in an accident. It’s very common for a person’s mental health to be affected if they have recently been in an accident, and that’s something you should take into account.
If you are feeling depressed or anxious or you are having flashbacks about your accident, you may be suffering from issues like PTSD. You deserve to be compensated for these emotional damages along with your physical ones. Seek the help of a mental health professional and keep all documents pertaining to your mental health to get fair compensation.
Don’t Speak to Insurance Companies
After your accident, the other party’s insurance company may get in touch with you. You need to remember that these companies do not have your best interests in mind. Their goal is to have to pay you as little as possible.
If you are looking for a fair settlement from your case, you need to avoid speaking to the representatives of these insurance companies. If they reach out to you, direct them to speak with your lawyer instead.
Be Prepared to Go to Court
In most cases, settlements can be reached without needing to go in front of a judge or jury. This is ideal since taking a case to court can make an already stressful experience a longer and more expensive one.
But there are some situations where it’s inevitable. If you end up needing to go to court, you can trust your lawyer to be there for you every step of the way. They will make sure that your rights are respected, and that you get the compensation you deserve.
Follow Your Lawyer’s Advice
Throughout the entire legal process, your lawyer will offer you important guidance. You should make sure to follow their instructions. For instance, they’ll tell you what you should be doing to support your case, like keeping a pain journal to document your injury.
They’ll also tell you things you should avoid throughout your case. Some examples include not posting online or making any kind of public statement. You should also avoid becoming angry, as difficult as that can be, as this can make you seem more emotional and less reliable or objective about your case.
If you have been injured, you should be fairly compensated for what you’ve been through. While every case is different, working with a qualified lawyer will ensure that you get a fair settlement for your case. You can count on your lawyer to provide you with important support during this time.
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