Negligence, which is a lack of care, causes about 90 percent of the car crashes in Tarrant County. So, most vehicle collisions are not unavoidable “accidents.” In these cases, victims may be entitled to substantial compensation. This reimbursement usually includes money for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering.
A partnership with a Fort Worth personal injury attorney significantly increases the compensation in these cases. But victims can also help themselves. In the moments after a crash, you can do a lot to help, or hurt, your claim.
DO Go to the Doctor
Many victims do not feel injured after a collision. But serious medical conditions, like whiplash, may be lurking just below the surface. Without prompt treatment, these conditions typically get worse. Moreover, if victims do not see doctors within twenty-four hours, insurance companies later claim the victim’s injuries must not have been very bad. That argument often resonates with Tarrant County jurors.
DON’T Talk to the Other Insurance Company
Insurance company telephone adjusters are not like the friendly, smiling actors who are on TV. These highly-trained professionals know how to make victims say damaging things. These statements are usually admissible in court. So, let your attorney handle this call. The insurance company can wait a few days to close its file.
DO Collect Evidence
The victim/plaintiff has the burden of proof in negligence cases. So, the victim/plaintiff needs evidence. Do not assume first responders will collect evidence for you. That’s not their job. So, take pictures of damage, take note of any security cameras in the area, and get the name and contact information of as many witnesses as possible.
DON’T Say “I’m Sorry”
In social circles, an apology often expresses sympathy as opposed to fault. If my daughter does poorly on a test, I might tell her “I’m sorry,” even though I know she did badly because she didn’t do her homework. But in legal circles, an apology is an admission of fault and not an expression of sympathy. At least, that’s how jurors could interpret such a statement. So, instead of saying “I’m sorry,” express sympathy in a more specific way. Say something like “How can I help you?”
DO Call an Attorney
Many victims are unable to do these things because their injuries are too serious. Fortunately, if you call an attorney straightaway, your lawyer can take care of all these things. An attorney can also connect you with excellent medical treatment and start building your claim for damages.
Car crash victims are in a good position to help themselves. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Fort Worth, contact Herreth Law. Home and hospital visits are available.