Injuries

How To Keep An Auto Accident From Derailing Your Life

Auto accidents will leave you with lifetime pains, missed work, mental suffering, and exorbitant medical bills. All these challenges may decrease your quality of life. Lives are even derailed among paralyzed people, those who lose a limb, and those who sustain severe head traumas. Imagine engaging in an accident that will make you unable to do simple yet vital day-to-day activities.

Even though auto accidents can cause immense harm to your body organs, the steps you take after the crash can act as a crucial game-changer. Just because other people remained paralyzed after suffering from car accidents doesn’t mean that you must go down the same path. Here is how to keep an auto accident from derailing your life. See more about hiring an auto accident lawyer.

Seek Medical Attention Immediately After the Auto Accident

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You must be aware that some of the injuries sustained in an auto accident will not be visible. In fact, the pains and injuries with lifetime effects like spine damage, whiplashes, and concussions may take days or even weeks to manifest.

The faster you seek medical care, the lower the risks that the injuries will worsen. It is also important to note that you may increase your recovery period if you do not seek medical care immediately after the auto accident. Internal bleeding and concussions could cause permanent brain damages if left untreated.

Get the help of an Auto Injury Physician

Even though your primary care physician (PCP) may come in handy after the accident, he may not provide adequate services. Your PCP is trained to give remedies for external injuries and may lack the skills needed to locate, diagnose and treat life-threatening injuries like fractures, soft tissue injuries, whiplashes, and concussions.

It is advisable to seek the services of a specialist with experience in treating auto accident patients. Look for a specialist in pain management and orthopedic services to manage any spine, bone, and muscle challenges you may have sustained in the auto accident.

Legal Services and an Auto Accident Lawyer

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You can also ensure to seek the services of an auto accident lawyer who can provide strong support in these types of matters.

They are well versed in these matters and ensure to provide their experience, knowledge, and ears to hear your problems.

These professionals act as strong and valuable partners in these trying times and provide you with the best support possible in more ways than one.

Strive to Win the Mental Battle

Did you know that even though many people will recover from extreme auto accidents, 30% of the victims will always have adverse issues dealing with detrimental psychological responses? This data explains why you must strive to win the mental battle in the wake of the auto accident.

Remember, it is an event that may affect your emotional state for the rest of your life. Always remember that it is not the severity of the physical injuries sustained in an accident that counts. On the contrary, it is how you perceive it that will haunt you if you let it.

  • Here is how to overcome the mental battles associated with auto accidents:
  • Focus on physical recovery first
  • Open up to tell your doctor that you’re feeling depressed or anxious
  • Talk to people about the accident
  • Take time
  • Take time to heal the difficult time
  • Treat anxiety as a regular thing for everyone
  • Be patient with yourself
  • Ensure that you spend time with people who’ll give you the necessary mental support
  • Try to re-engage with the social scene
  • Try as much as possible to go back to your pre-accident lifestyle

Embrace your Treatment Plan

The prescribed treatment plan could be sluggish and time-consuming. However, it is a matter of personal commitment to returning to normalcy after engaging in a severe auto accident.

The most effective way to follow up with the treatment program is to ensure that it takes the shortest time possible. That’ll only be attained if you follow your doctor’s instructions. Some of the things to follow closely may include:

  • Setting and meeting the follow-up schedules with your doctor
  • Taking a few hours/days off work
  • Minimizing your physical activities to give your body the time it needs to heal
  • Engaging in therapist-recommended physical exercises at home
  • Taking your physical therapy schedules seriously

Also, remember to be an active part of your recovery plan. Take time to discuss with your physician any time you realize that the recommended treatment plans aren’t effective. Develop a collaborative framework with your doctor and arrange for alternative treatment plans that will meet your needs.

Exercise

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The accident should not mark the end of your life. You need to exercise and stretch regularly if you want to regain your original states of motion, endurance, balance, and flexibility. Similarly, regular exercises will help you reduce the chances of experiencing muscular stiffness, joint weaknesses, pains, and inflammations attributed to the injuries.

However, be keen to follow your physician’s recommendations on the type and amount of physical activity that will be safe for your specific condition. There are times where you may feel that you have the energy to do more. Nonetheless, always remember that pushing too hard could only worsen your current state and prolong the recovery period.

Be patient

Patience could be the greatest virtue you will need after sustaining an auto accident. In essence, you may take longer than you think to recover from the pains and injuries you got in the accident. Apart from the prolonged and frustrating healing process, setbacks could come your way. However, always embrace the sentiment that you will be patient with yourself, and you will keep taking care of your body.

A Support System

You may build your patience by surrounding yourself with a robust support system. A sound support system like family could lift your mood and keep you motivated towards meeting your treatment plan. Your family will be there to hold your hand until you stabilize.

You may also think about getting additional support from your spiritual leader or a professional counselor.

It is usual for the auto accident to cause anxieties and depression that may take a toll on your patience.

A member of the clergy and a professional counselor will be the most significant support institutions to look for any time you are drained with unresolved emotional and mental challenges connected to the accident. Your doctor could recommend the best person to turn to if you do not have an option.

Auto accidents are life-changing events. Any miscalculation could make detrimental changes to the victim’s quality of life. Taking the right steps could increase the auto accident victim’s quality of life over the long-term.

Car Accident Lawsuit: How You Can Protect Yourself

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Immediately after a car accident, you probably aren’t really thinking about the possible legal battle that lies ahead. Instead, you are most likely focused on other things. The damage to your vehicle and any injuries you may have sustained probably occupy much of your thoughts. However, it is important to consider the legal ramifications immediately, as well, because you should already be taking steps to ensure the best possible legal outcome.

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At the Scene

Immediately following a car accident, there are several steps that you should take both for your legal case as well as for your physical well-being.

Stop Your Car

The first thing to do after a car accident is to pull your vehicle off of the roadway. You need to come to a complete stop and shut off your engine.

Check for Injuries

Once you are safely out of the road, you should check to see if you are injured. The adrenaline from the accident will likely mask any pain you might be feeling, so it is necessary to do a physical and visual check of your body. After examining yourself, you should check on any passengers in your vehicle.

If you have no passengers, or if everyone is fine, carefully exit your car. Make your way over to check on anyone else who was involved in the accident. If anyone is hurt, call 911 and follow the instructions of the 911 operator.

Call the Police

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If you already called 911, then the police should be heading to the scene. Otherwise, you will want to call the police now because you will need to file an accident report.

Talk to Any Other Drivers Involved

You will need to talk to anyone else involved in the accident to exchange insurance information. While doing so, be careful about what you say. Never admit fault. Avoid talking about the accident in general. You might both be nice, honest people not looking for a legal battle. However, when it comes time to file insurance claims and pay medical bills and repair costs, things can quickly grow contentious.

Gather Information From the Scene

Take pictures of everything and write down information about the cars involved, weather conditions, and anything else that could have played a role in the accident. If there is missing road signage, then the city could be liable for the accident rather than either driver. The more information you can gather, the easier time your lawyer will have when building your case.

File an Accident Report

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Talk to the police when they arrive on the scene and file an accident report about what happened. Do not lie in the report, but also don’t incriminate yourself.

After Leaving the Scene

Your job in protecting yourself does not end at the scene of the accident.

Seek Medical Attention

Even if you feel like you are uninjured, it is imperative to receive a thorough medical examination after a car accident. Many injuries are hard to immediately detect. Skipping an examination only to discover a problem days later can damage any claim for compensation you might make. The delay provides for reasonable doubt about whether the accident was the cause of the injury or not.

You should let paramedics at the scene check on you, and whether they feel you need to go to the hospital or not, you should still go in to get a more thorough exam. Beyond the legal implications that can arise from delaying medical attention, there can be severe consequences for your health.

Talk to a Lawyer

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Contacting a car accident lawyer in Los Angeles is essential to your protection after a crash. A lawyer can immediately begin to advise you. They will help ensure that you don’t do or say anything that could hurt your insurance claim or your legal case should you go to court. If you were clearly not at fault for the accident, the other driver’s insurance company may try to contact you within hours of the incident. Click here to get in touch with a car accident lawyer in LA.

Insurance companies hate to pay out claims and have a whole bag of tricks to get claimants to undervalue their claims or make it so that they can deny them entirely. When you hire a lawyer, they will immediately take over all discussions with the insurance company. That way, you don’t have to worry about messing things up yourself.

Talking to a lawyer early also helps them to begin their investigation into the accident while the evidence is all still fresh.

Contact Your Insurance Company

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Whether you were at fault or not, you need to contact your insurance agency after a crash. You don’t have to go into specifics. You just need to report that you were in an accident.

Stay Off Social Media

Do not share anything about your accident on social media. Even if you think your post is harmless, it could end up coming back to bite you. When investigating an accident, social media has become a favorite tool for insurance companies and lawyers looking for material they can use. Even if your settings are private, there is no guarantee that the things you post on your account cannot be used against you in court.

Avoiding social media altogether following an accident is the best course of action. Even a post that you feel is unrelated could be used against you. For instance, if you are making a claim about an injury and pain and suffering, but you put up a post saying, “Feeling great!” a week after the accident, it will cast doubt.

Overall Advice

Anytime you are facing the possibility of any sort of legal dispute, the best thing you can do is to keep your mouth shut. The first thing your lawyer will tell you will be not to talk to anyone. Beyond social media, you shouldn’t talk to friends about the accident beyond the basics. You can tell them that you were in an accident and that you are going to live.

Obviously, your spouse needs to know more details, but most people don’t. You can fill others in on all the details once the case has settled.

Lawyers and your Injury – Basics of your Personal Injury Claim

Get to grips with your personal injury claim and learn what a lawyer does for you.

When you are injured through an accident that was not your fault, things can quickly become overwhelming. From medical bills to expenses garnered travelling back and forward to appointments: you are entitled to compensation for all of it.

However, when you do choose to pursue that personal injury lawsuit, it can be so confusing that you do not know where to turn. In this tough time, you need to buckle down and get the best possible team in your corner. This means hiring a personal injury lawyer for you, exactly when you need it.

What are the other basics of a personal injury claim? We found out in advance…

The Basics of Personal Injury

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Let us run through each of the small points of personal injury claims and why each step is important.

Hiring an Attorney

You can find any number of lawyers capable of representing your personal injury lawsuit – but how do you find one that you trust? DDRB Lawyers have an excellent reputation in this department – but why do you need a lawyer in the first place? Can you represent yourself in a personal injury claim? The answer is a resounding no.

Hiring an attorney is not really an optional thing. If you research, go to court, and try and defend yourself, you will end up with nothing. This is not about politics or how much you know, it is about a lawyer’s business. Think about it. They represent people just like you, every day of the week. This makes them ideally placed to administer better representation than you can get for yourself.

Besides anything else, we hire an attorney during personal injury claims because sometimes, you are injured beyond being able to represent yourself. If you are in a coma, or otherwise incapacitated, your personal injury lawyer acts as your voice to ensure nobody takes advantage of you.

Sure, you might be able to represent yourself… but why would you invite that kind of stress into your life when you are already suffering?

Getting to the Doctor

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Apart from getting an attorney, you need to start getting a case together. To make this happen, you need to visit a doctor for a record of our injuries. This is especially important if your personal injury happened as the result of an accident. A trip to the ER will place a time and date of your injuries and allow a point from which you can get treatment. That initial visit is helpful in proving what happened to you and when it first occurred. Without it, your case will be flimsy at best.

Reporting the Incident

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When you are injured severely and it is not your fault, this is because someone has been negligent. If you are on a construction site and something falls on you, you need to visit the ER and report the building site to your local government office. If you are hit by a car, the police need to be involved. If you are in a fire, the fire brigade, and so on.

The point is that you need to report your incident to have the best chance at a successful personal injury claim. Not reporting the accident means there is no legal record of it happening. You cannot prove that you were injured if there is no record of the accident… So, make sure the authorities are involved.

Gathering Evidence

Now that we have covered why the attorney should be the first step, we can move on to gathering the evidence that will help your case. Providing you did not skip step one; this step should be easy. Your attorney will help you in evidence gathering and in advising you on what documentation you should need.

Some common evidence gathering steps are as follows:

Source:1800lawguys.com
  • Taking photographs of the area where the accident happened. You should carefully note where any items of furniture or debris are, as well as photographing any scuff marks on the floor and the position of the accident.
  • Keep a journal of your injuries and recovery, this is an evidence gathering tool which ensures you do not forget to report any of your symptoms to your medical professionals. Your personal injury attorney can also use it to keep track of your injuries.
  • Take witness statements wherever you can. If possible, retrieve phone numbers and statements from all those who saw what happened. Look for stores which would have been open when the accident happened and ask staff members if they saw you that day.
  • Write out your own memories of what happened that day. Writing it down will help you stick to the same story if you are cross-examined.

Why Gather Evidence?

Why do we bother doing all of this? To give ourselves a stronger case. The opposition in any given personal injury lawsuit, is there on behalf of your insurance company. The whole aim of them being present is to try and prove that you are lying. They will try to defame you, so try to avoid the following things…

  • Do not talk to anyone (who is not your attorney) about your case.
  • This means no posting about your injuries on social media.
  • It means staying off work for as long as it takes to make a complete recovery.
  • Do not lie – if you say you are wheelchair bound, they will be watching you.
  • Stay home if you are too sick to go out. You may be followed by a Private Investigator to ensure you are as sick as you say you are.

Once the pitfalls of personal injury lawsuits have been avoided, you will be free to leave the matter in your lawyer’s hands until the date is set to go before the judge.

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Further things to Remember about Personal Injury Claims

Remember to account all your damages and keep all receipts. You will not have to go before a jury, but you will have your case heard by a judge. Most importantly, listen to your lawyer and do exactly as they tell you. They may be the best chance you have at getting compensation.

Injured By a Big Rig: What Happens Next?

No matter what state you live in, you’re likely to be driving next to a big rig at some point during your day. Big rigs are an important part of the economy and thus difficult to avoid. However, as important as they are, they can also be a dangerous vehicle to be driving around.

Unfortunately, rates of automotive accidents involving a big rig are pretty high throughout the country. Since most big rigs are owned by a company, being involved in an accident with them and filing a lawsuit is a little more different than your standard vehicle accident. Thus the following includes a list of things that will happen after you’ve been involved with a big rig on the road.

Medical Assistance

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Being involved in any type of accident provides drivers with an almost instant shot of adrenaline to their system. Adrenaline can often decrease a person’s pain, and so it is important first to determine if you and the other driver are safe. If anyone is injured, then it is important to contact 911 rather than the police department. In fact, showing empathy for the other driver may increase your chances of having a favorable end-result.

Calling the Police

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If everyone involved is safe, you need to call a police officer to help you deal with the situation. In some cases, a big rig driver may attempt to pay you off to avoid getting in trouble with their employer. Never take these deals and always have an officer document everything. The fact is that you never know the underlying issues that may pop up later on.

Liability is a vital component in such cases, meaning that accepting a non-official proposition can highly affect the events that may come up in the close future. A big rig driver can insinuate that fault lays with you, rather than his actions, pushing you into accepting an offer that is nowhere close to reality. When involved in an accident, immediate injuries may not show the underlying effects of the crash. Therefore, by accepting an offer, you risk being surprised with massive medical bills and a recovery period that will not match the payment you have accepted previously.

Proper Documentation of the Scene

While you wait for the police offer to arrive, you may take this time to begin documenting the scene. You can do this by taking pictures of the accident scene. Make sure to take pictures of both vehicles, the street you’re on, the condition of the road, and any cuts or bruises.

Witnesses are a key point towards building a strong case after being involved in a road accident. You may speak to and gather statements from onlookers who may have seen the accident occur. Moreover, it is important to find a way to keep in touch with these people so that you will be able to contact them later if necessary. Exchange contact information and ask whether they would be willing to provide further information in the close future. Your lawyer will highly benefit from being able to contact these witnesses and build a strategy surrounding the external information obtained.

Medical Documentation

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If you need to be taken to the hospital for any type of injury, it is important to obtain as much documentation as possible. This is because the courts will request that you prove your injuries’ seriousness before granting you any type of compensation.

You should keep track of all documents involving the medical implications generated from being involved in a car accident. You can keep a record of doctor’s appointments, medical bills and expenses, or any special medical treatment that was necessary for your recovery.

Choose Your Words Wisely

When asked to give a statement, you should always tell the truth. If you do this, there is really nothing to worry about, especially if the incident was well documented from the beginning. What is actually important to avoid is denying or admitting liability. If you’ve been injured by a big rig but the fault stands in your actions, you should never actually say that in a statement. This is an aspect that should be handled by an attorney, especially because of the high importance of the wording of such statements.

Nevertheless, lying will never be an option. Even if liability is partial, offering a statement shortly after being involved in an accident is never a good idea. By refraining from offering more information than necessary, a specialized lawyer is left with bigger chances of reducing your liability or increase credibility.

Dealing with a Big Rig Company Attorney

Unfortunately, communicating with a big rig company is where most of the mistakes are made. In some cases, the company’s attorney may reach out to you for additional information. The fact is that they are simply looking for statements that may discredit you in court.

It is recommended to never speak with a trucking company’s attorney. Record the conversation and allow your lawyer to speak on your behalf. If you need legal help, you can click here to speak with the truck accident lawyer who represented comedian and actor Tracy Morgan in his truck accident case.

Lawsuits

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In many cases, drivers will seek to be compensated for their injuries and damages. According to many state laws, the employer is responsible for the actions of an employee. Your attorney may need to prove that the driver was on the job at the time the accident occurred, but this should not be too much of a hurdle. If the incident was documented properly from the very beginning, proving that liability stands with the other driver entirely should not be problematic at all. Nevertheless, the advice is to seek legal help from a specialized attorney, given that big rig accidents will sometimes involve specifics that don’t usually come up in other types of car accidents.

If you’ve been in an accident, it is important to consult with a personal injury attorney as soon as you can. Doing so may place you in a better position to obtain proper compensation. It will also help you get your case filed before the statute of limitations is up.

Medical Malpractice: Why Things Go Wrong

Medical malpractice is a broad term that can encompass a lot of different things going wrong under the care of a doctor or nurse. If you have suffered an injury or other harm as a result of medical malpractice, you have the opportunity to bring your case to court and potentially receive substantial compensation.

What Qualifies as Medical Malpractice?

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Any situation that involves a patient being injured by a health professional due to their carer’s negligence or failure to do something that they should have known to do is medical malpractice. This can range from a relatively minor infection that develops as a result of a poorly thought out a prescription to catastrophic injury or death from a botched surgery.

Common examples of medical malpractice include:

  • An incorrect diagnosis – when a serious matter, giving a wrong diagnosis can have serious consequences, from the side effects of unnecessary medication to the implications of letting a grave disease run its course untreated;
  • Surgical error – as you could guess, this may be the gravest form of malpractice, as a lot can go wrong under the knife. Unsteady hands have no business in the operating room, and mistakes can come from carelessness, working under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or other preventable factors.
  • Anesthesia miscalculations – many types of operations require the patient to be under general anesthesia. This can be the case from something as simple as a hernia repair to triple bypass heart surgery. Anesthesiologists are specially trained to know exactly what dosage of anesthesia to administer based on such factors as the patient’s mass, gender, medical history, medications, and the type of operation involved. Calculation errors can easily put a patient to sleep permanently, which is why it takes more than eight years to become a licensed anesthesiologist in the US!
  • Medication errors – This can take multiple forms, from an error in prescribing the medication on the part of a doctor, or an error in administering medication, such as giving improper dosages, by an attending nurse.
  • Delivery problems – Sometimes, complications during pregnancy will lead a doctor to opt to perform an emergency c section. In fact, there are certain conditions that require a doctor to do this, and failure to do so can constitute malpractice. Cerebral palsy is one such debilitating condition that is a direct result of problems during delivery

Here you can learn more about common medical malpractice instances.

Remembering the Four D’s of Medical Malpractice

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When it comes to addressing any of these examples of malpractice in a court of law, there are four D’s that your case needs to meet the threshold of in order to move forward in court.

Duty – This refers to the doctor, nurse, or other health professional’s responsibility to you, the patient. Attorneys demonstrate this first D from the individual’s title and their job description.

Deviation from duty – A more nuanced assessment, deviation from duty involves demonstrating that the health professional messed up. This is not always so easy to demonstrate, as one must prove that they should have known better because of their training and that other doctors or nurses in the same position would have acted differently.

Damages – In this case, damages are the injuries you received as a result of the medical malpractice, but also the complications that may have arisen from those injuries. This can include monetary loss, such as lost wages or lost opportunity. It can also include harder-to-monetize items such as pain and suffering.

Direct cause – This is the hardest of the four D’s to nail down. Your attorney really has to show that the doctor’s negligent actions or omission were the direct and immediate cause of the injury you received or the long term damages sustained.

What you Need for Your Case

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Expert witnesses are often needed to provide testimony in medical malpractice cases, either in court or through a sworn deposition. Expert witnesses in medical malpractice cases are often specialists in the field who sometimes have the same job as the doctor who you are suing.

Some cases, however, need not require an expert witness, which can be helpful as expert witnesses will often charge several thousand dollars for case preparation and testimony. Such cases generally involve so-called “never events”, which are situations in which the health professional does something that they should never do under any circumstance.

For example, if a doctor performing a kidney transplant is drunk and takes out the wrong kidney, it’s quite possible that a judge or jury is going to order enormous damages in your favor without needing to hear from an expert witness. After all, it doesn’t take an expert to know that performing organ transplants under the influence is a pretty bad idea.

Any type of personal injury lawsuit relies on evidence, so your attorney is going to need all documentation pertaining to your medical treatment. They may need to interview all of the health professionals who attended the operation that went wrong, or who were in any way involved in your treatment.

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Final Tips

Always speak to an attorney before pursuing any type of legal case. A qualified attorney can first review your case and medical documentation to let you know right away if you have a good chance of success or not.

Medical malpractice is actually a leading cause of death in the US, following close behind cancer and heart disease. While this represents a tragic trend of flaws in the medical industry, the silver lining is that medical malpractice suits often yield enormous payouts.

For serious injuries or death, no amount of money might ever truly compensate for the serious losses involved, not to mention the pain and suffering experienced as a result, or the complications resulting from its long recovery and aftermath.

But as a victim of medical malpractice, you are owed the opportunity to see your case brought before a court of law. And with the right representation, strong evidence, and a good argument, you have a good chance of gaining a windfall in monetary damages.

6 Dumb Insurance Mistakes Even Smart People Make after a Crash

A car accident is never something for which you make a plan. Everyone is well aware that there is a good chance they will be involved in at least one accident at some point in their life. The hope is always that when that day comes, you only suffer minor damages. Some people may do some research, but nobody is ever really prepared. After an accident, you will likely be disoriented, which makes it quite easy to make one of these six common mistakes.

When going up against an insurance company after an accident, you are at a disadvantage on many different levels. You are quite possibly injured and not in your best frame of mind. There is a good chance this is your first accident, while the insurance adjuster does their role every day. The insurance adjuster also has specific training in trying to trick you into making a mistake that devalues your claim.

Here we present you with six of the most common mistakes that people make when dealing with an insurance adjuster after an accident and how best to avoid them.

1.  Filing an Insurance Claim Too Quickly

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When involved in an accident, you are going to want to exchange insurance information with any other drivers involved in the crash. Learn more about the documents you should always have on you when driving, which are your driver’s license, car registration, and proof of vehicle insurance. After the crash, if the other driver was at fault for the accident, you are going to want to file a claim with their insurance.

A problem that many drivers face is that they file the claim too quickly. There is a statute of limitations on filing a claim, so you can’t wait forever. However, that time period is typically years, not days. When drivers file a claim too quickly, it often comes back to bite them. They later realize that the claim didn’t come anywhere near covering all of the costs that they accrued from the accident.

Many serious injuries are not immediately diagnosed after an accident. It can take a few weeks before all of the damage that has been done, is fully uncovered. Those who filed too quickly may find that they have missed the chance to get these other injuries covered.

Insurance adjusters are aware of all of these things. That is why, if they know their client is at fault, they may contact you on the day of the accident, before you get in touch with them.

2.  Accepting a Settlement Offer Too Soon

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Often an insurance adjuster will offer you a settlement the first time they speak to you. Never accept that first offer and do not engage in discussions about counteroffers. The initial offer is typically far below what you can get if you aren’t overhasty. You have no way of knowing the full worth of your claim so early in the process.

In addition to medical expenses that have not presented themselves yet, there may be many secondary costs like lost wages or pain and suffering costs.

3.  Giving a Recorded Statement

An insurance agent is likely to push you for a recorded statement of the incident. They will claim that the purpose of this is to help in determining liability. However, the true intent of the statement is to trick you into saying something that you shouldn’t. They will ask leading questions and try to get you to say things that they can use against you to devalue your claim.

Don’t ever give an insurance adjuster a recorded statement. Politely decline and end the conversation. The less you talk to an insurance adjuster in general, the better your position.

4.  Posting on Social Media

Social media has become a huge part of the world in which we live. Many people post all about their lives on one platform or another, so, of course, they would post about a big car accident in which they were involved. However, a seemingly harmless post can have devastating effects on your insurance claim. Your words and photos can potentially be used to devalue your claim in a variety of ways.

After an accident, avoiding social media altogether is going to be your best course of action. At the very least, you should switch all of your privacy settings to the highest level. There have been cases where private accounts were opened to the court, but those are very rare. To be on the safe side, though, a social media blackout is the way to go.

5.  Giving Authorization for Releasing Medical Records

An insurance adjuster will often request access to your medical records so they can see the files for the damages you are claiming from the crash. This request may seem innocent enough, but it is far from it. They will use your authorization to comb through all of your medical records. Every single item in your medical history, going back to when you were born.

The purpose of this search is to find anything they can use against you. They will look for anything that might suggest a preexisting condition that contributed to your injuries and undervalue your claim in this way. Deny any requests for medical records.

6.  Not Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

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Choosing not to hire an attorney can be an incredibly costly mistake. Many people think that hiring a lawyer will cost too much money, and insurance adjusters will often try to nurture this idea. However, most personal injury lawyers will work on a contingency basis, which means that they don’t get paid unless you do.

Some people still think that the amount of their eventual fee will eat away far too much of the money gained in the settlement. In reality, people who hire an attorney often get several times the amount they would have gotten without one. So, even after their fee, the client has a much higher settlement amount.

Hiring a qualified personal injury attorney helps to level the playing field. It is no longer a professional insurance adjuster against an amateur victim. Instead, it’s two pros giving it their all. Hiring an attorney has the added benefit of giving you the peace of mind of knowing there is someone taking care of things with the insurance company and that you don’t have to. You can just sit back, relax, and focus on your recovery.

Can Airbags Cause Injuries When You are in Car Accident?

Airbags reduce driver and front-seat passenger deaths by 29% and 32% respectively, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). There’s no disputing that they are an important safety feature, and while they can reduce deaths and injuries, they can also cause them.

According to flemingattorneys.com, it’s not uncommon for drivers and passengers to get hurt in a car accident because of airbags.

4 Types of Injuries

Head and Neck

Airbags can help prevent common injuries caused by frontal impact. The head and neck are especially vulnerable due to contact with the steering wheel.

But deployment can cause other problems with the head and neck, including facial trauma, spine fractures and in rare cases, decapitation. Studies show that a person can suffer damage to their eyes, especially if the person is wearing glasses. Orbital fractures are common, but occupants may also experience retinal detachment or lens rupture.

In cases where accidents are not head-on (front corner or offset from center impact), airbags may not be as effective at preventing head injuries because the impact propels the body in different directions.

Shoulder and Arm

In serious car accidents, airbags can prevent painful head impacts, but there is also an increased risk of damaging the shoulder and forearm. Clavicle injuries are especially common.

Fractures and dislocations are the most common types of upper limb damage caused by airbag deployment. Contusions, sprains, and abrasions can also occur.

When deployed, it can propel the forearm into the rearview mirror, center console, or even the windshield. The impact itself can hurt the forearm, wrist, or hand.

Torso

Front airbags prevent occupants from hitting the steering wheel, dashboard or windshield. However, deployment can also cause injury to the abdomen or chest. Drivers and passengers can suffer rib fractures, cardiac rupture and also damage their spine and heart valve.

Research shows that airbags can seriously bruise the chest wall, cause lacerations and burns, and in some cases, these injuries can be significant. Emergency radiographs may not expose these types of problems, so detailed chest imaging may be required.

Defective Products

Airbags can cause injuries even when they deploy and function properly. If Defective they increase the risk of injury or even death.

The Takata airbag recall demonstrates the potential danger of these defective products in vehicles. Many makes and models were recalled because it was discovered that long-term exposure to heat and humidity caused the airbags to explode upon deployment. In these situations, occupants have experienced significant pain and suffering and even death.

About 63 million airbags were recalled in the initial recall. Some vehicles, mainly Honda, Acura, Mazda and Ford vehicles, were at a higher risk of airbag explosion.

In 2019, additional Takata airbags were recalled because of faulty inflators that may explode or fail to inflate properly upon deployment. The cause of the problem is believed to be a faulty inflator seal. Improper sealing can allow moisture into the propellant used to inflate the airbag. This can cause it to inflate more slowly or, on the other hand, more aggressively and even explode. Metal parts become projectiles causing injury or even death to occupants.

Tips for Injury Prevention

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While airbags can cause injuries, the protection they provide often outweighs the risks. There are steps drivers and passengers can take to help prevent the risk of injury in a car accident.

Wear a Seatbelt

Airbags are designed to work in combination with seatbelts. Wearing a seatbelt is crucial not only to prevent airbag-related injuries but also to keep you safe if you are in an accident.

The seatbelt prevents occupant ejection, and the airbag acts as a cushion between the occupant and the dashboard, wheel, windshield, and other surfaces in the vehicle.

Without a seatbelt, the impact of being flung forward towards the steering wheel can seriously hurt you.

Give Yourself Space

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends drivers put at least 10” between the steering wheel and their breastbone. Giving yourself adequate space will help prevent injuries caused by airbag deployment.

The biggest risk of injury is during the first two to three inches of inflation because the force is the strongest in this range. Ten inches will provide enough space between the chest and the airbag.

Talk to a Lawyer About a Product Liability Case

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After sustaining injuries in an accident, you should first seek medical treatment. If it’s possible take pictures of the interior and exterior of your car or have a passenger or friend do so. In any case it’s imperative for you to see a doctor right away, failure to do so will allow the other side, the insurance companies and manufacturers, to claim your injuries were not a result of the accident.

If you feel that your injuries were due to a malfunctioning airbag, one that deployed or DID not deploy, or if subsequent to your injuries the manufacturer issues a recall for the make and model of your car, you may have a product liability case. Even if there is no recall you may have a case. The best thing you can do is contact a lawyer. Product liability lawyers, like many, take cases on contingency and always give a free consultation, so it’s in your best interest to simply search for a lawyer on Google and call their office.

Once a lawyer takes you on as a client, they will typically subpoena records and emails from the manufacturer to begin to build your case. The evidence they are looking for may be related to the design of the product, crash test results, corrective actions made to the design, and most importantly internal communications between employees. In general, if a manufacturer issues a recall, it’s because something isn’t working as designed.

In some product liability cases, it’s been proven that the defendants, the manufacturers, had prior knowledge about a problem with their product and were negligent in addressing the problem or did not communicate the issue to the public in a timely manner. A good product liability lawyer can secure the evidence required to win a settlement for you. In fact, they may have settled cases similar to yours before or taken them to trial. Don’t be afraid to speak out, in the long run, it’s in your best interest.

What Information Will You Need For Your Car Accident Lawyer?

Being prepared for an initial consultation with an attorney is extremely important for a variety of reasons, mainly so that you can use your time during this consultation to get the best understanding possible of how you and the lawyer will be able to work together. Finding an attorney to take your case can be a surprisingly complicated process if you do it on your own, and oftentimes, people will need to go through this process on their own.

However, there is are services that can connect you with a car accident lawyer in Tampa without needing to go through all of the additional legwork of finding an attorney that covers your area of need AND who is available to take your case. By using the 1800injured.care referral service to connect with an attorney, you can focus on your personal needs and the work ahead of you.

Take a look below at some of the most important information that you should gather before an initial consultation with your attorney. Remember that once you start working with your lawyer that they will be able to advise you on the additional information you will need to gather, or will be able to gather the information on their own as you focus on your recovery.

A Copy Of Your Police and Accident Report

The accident report that the police will write will be one of the central sources of truth throughout the entire claims process and will give your attorney a good idea of what they are up against. The sooner you are able to get a copy of the police report in front of a lawyer the better since they will be able to identify any information that may be unclear or could be misconstrued so that you can begin to take steps to correct them or work around these blockers.

Contact Information and Statements From Your Passengers

If there were other passengers in the vehicle that were injured in the accident, your lawyer will benefit from knowing about the extent of their injuries, as well as their own perspective and account of the accident. Since they are firsthand eyewitnesses to the accident as well, their testimony and involvement will be helpful even though they will likely be handling their own claim process at the same time.

Medical Records Relating To the Accident

Any medical-related documentation that you can gather will be extremely informative for your attorney and will help them to get a better understanding of the situation than you will be able to do on your own. These medical records, much like the accident report, will be key documents throughout the entire process, so giving your attorney access to all of the related information as soon as possible will be a significant benefit.

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Income and Earnings Statements

Equally important to providing your attorney with a comprehensive understanding of your situation is any relevant income information, such as previous paystubs, employment contracts, or anything else that they can use to understand how much money that you are losing each day that your injuries keep you from work. You will be able to seek compensation for these losses in your claim, as well as your medical costs and any other damages, but the more financial documentation that you can provide, the more clear and compelling of an argument your attorney will be able to make. A single pay stub isn’t going to cut it. Get your tax statements, work contracts, and bank statements together to present a full picture of your financial situation.

Your Insurance Policy

If the other driver caused the accident, then you will likely be going through their insurance to seek compensation for your injuries and financial impacts. However, it is very important for your attorney to understand what sort of insurance you have protecting you regardless, as they will need to interact with your insurance company to some extent regardless of who ultimately pays your damages. Your insurance company will need to know what is going on with your claim from time to time, and your attorney may be able to help you understand what will happen next.

Pictures of the Accident

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Take as many pictures of the accident and your injuries as possible. They will help your attorney to get an idea of the severity of the situation, and they will be very useful as you move forward with settlement negotiations or if you need to go to trial. Bruises fade, scars lighten, but pictures will always show the horror and pain that you had to endure in the early days of your injuries. If you do have to ultimately go to trial, these pictures will help your case by showing the judge or jury the actual injuries that you suffered, since they can seem very abstract months—even years—down the road when it goes to court.

Contact Information or Statements from Eyewitnesses

If you have any contact information for eyewitnesses, or if you already have gathered some eyewitness accounts of the situation, this information will be very helpful for your attorney to have. Every additional piece of context that your attorney can bring into your case will help to strengthen your position and allow for more aggressive negotiations. The more eyewitnesses that you are able to get statements from, the less the conversation becomes about your word versus the other driver’s word, which is important if there are disagreements about fault or the cause of the accident.

A Record of Any Communications That You Have Made Related to the Accident

If you have already filed an insurance claim, contacted your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company, or taken any other steps on your own, then your attorney will need to know about these contacts and ensure that they are able to incorporate those steps into their own process. This is equally important because you may have unknowingly made a statement that could ultimately come back to haunt you, such as an innocuous apology that the other insurance company uses as proof that you admitted fault (although you did not). The more information your lawyer has, the better suited they are to help you.