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The Most Common Mistakes to Avoid In a Personal Injury Claim

The Most Common Mistakes to Avoid In a Personal Injury Claim

Accidents resulting in personal injuries can be life-changing and emotionally burdensome. It is crucial to avoid common mistakes in personal injury cases to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Unfortunately, individuals often make several personal injury claim mistakes following an accident, all of which can jeopardize their potential settlement. In this blog post, Cheves Briceno will highlight some of the most common mistakes to avoid in a personal injury claim and provide practical advice on how to steer clear of them.

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Delaying Medical Treatment

One of the most common mistakes in a personal injury case is delaying medical treatment. It is crucial to seek medical attention immediately after an accident, even if you do not feel any pain or discomfort. Delaying medical treatment will worsen your injuries and make it difficult to prove that your injuries were caused by the accident. Insurance companies often use delays in medical treatment to argue that your injuries were not severe or were caused by something other than the accident.

In the state of Georgia, it is particularly important to seek medical attention immediately after an accident. Georgia follows a modified comparative negligence rule regarding medical attention, meaning that your compensation may be reduced if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident. The insurance company can use delayed medical treatment to argue that you were partially at fault for your injuries.

Admitting Fault Prematurely

Another common mistake is admitting fault prematurely. It is natural to want to apologize or take responsibility for an accident, especially if someone is injured. However, admitting fault prematurely can severely impact your ability to receive compensation. It is important to remember that multiple factors and parties may be involved in an accident, and who is at fault is not always clear. It is best to consult with an experienced Cheves Briceno personal injury attorney before making any statements about fault.

As mentioned above, the modified comparative negligence rule applies in Georgia. You can still receive compensation for your claim, even if you are partially at fault for the accident. However, your compensation will be reduced by the percentage of fault attributed to you. Admitting fault prematurely can lead to a higher percentage of fault being attributed to you, which will reduce your compensation.

Giving Recorded Statements to Insurance Companies

Insurance companies often request recorded statements from individuals involved in an accident. It is essential to be cautious when giving recorded statements to insurance companies as they may use your words against you. One of the biggest personal injury claim mistakes is providing a recorded statement without consulting an attorney. An experienced Cheves Briceno personal injury attorney can help you prepare for giving a recorded statement and ensure that your rights are protected.

It is particularly important to be cautious in Georgia when giving recorded statements, as Georgia is a “fault” state for car accidents. This means that the at-fault party’s insurance company is responsible for paying for the damages resulting from the accident. Insurance companies often use recorded statements to shift the blame and reduce liability.

Accepting an Initial Settlement Offer Without Proper Evaluation

Insurance companies often make an initial settlement offer shortly after an accident. It may be tempting to accept this offer to resolve the matter and move on with your life quickly. However, accepting an initial settlement offer without proper evaluation is one of the most critical mistakes to avoid in a personal injury claim. The initial offer from the insurance company is often much lower than the compensation you deserve. It is important to consult with an experienced Cheves Briceno personal injury attorney to properly evaluate any settlement offers and ensure that you receive fair compensation.

It is particularly important to properly evaluate any settlement offers in Georgia as Georgia follows the “made whole” doctrine. This means you are entitled to be “made whole” or fully compensated for your damages before any subrogation claims are paid. Insurance companies often make initial settlement offers that only partially compensate you for your damages, which can lead to difficulties in resolving subrogation claims.

Not Gathering Enough Evidence

Another one of the common personal injury claim mistakes is not gathering enough evidence. It is vital to collect as much evidence as possible after an accident to support your claim. This includes taking photos of the accident scene, collecting witness statements, and recording your medical treatment and expenses. Failing to gather enough evidence can make it challenging to prove your case and receive the compensation you deserve.

In Georgia, it is particularly important to gather enough evidence as Georgia follows the modified comparative negligence rule. Having enough evidence to prove your case and establish the other party’s fault is crucial to receiving total compensation.

Not Hiring an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney

One of the most critical mistakes to avoid in a personal injury claim is not hiring an experienced personal injury attorney. Many people believe that they can handle their personal injury claims on their own and do not need an attorney. However, personal injury claims can be complex and involve multiple parties, insurance companies, and legal issues. An experienced Cheves Briceno personal injury attorney can help you navigate the legal process, negotiate with insurance companies, and protect your rights.

Not Keeping a Record of Expenses

Another common mistake in personal injury cases is not keeping a record of expenses. It is important to keep a record of all expenses related to the accident, including medical bills, transportation costs, and lost wages. Failing to record expenses can make it challenging to prove your damages and receive the compensation you deserve.

In Georgia, it is particularly important to keep a record of expenses as Georgia follows the “made whole” doctrine. This means you are entitled to be “made whole” or fully compensated for your damages before any subrogation claims are paid. Keeping a record of expenses is crucial to establishing your damages and ensuring you are fully compensated.

Not Following Medical Advice

Out of the common mistakes in personal injury cases listed above, not following medical advice is one of the worst mistakes to make. It is important to follow the medical advice of your healthcare providers and attend all follow-up appointments. Failing to follow medical advice can worsen your injuries and make it challenging to prove your damages and receive the compensation you deserve.

In Georgia, it is particularly important to follow medical advice as Georgia follows the modified comparative negligence rule. Insurance companies will meticulously comb through medical records to find any reason to compensate you less than you deserve. Following medical advice is key to establishing your damages and ensuring that you receive full compensation.

Lean on Cheves Briceno for Your Personal Injury Needs

It is crucial to avoid common mistakes in personal injury cases to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve. Delaying medical treatment and ignoring doctors’ orders, admitting fault prematurely, giving recorded statements to insurance companies, accepting initial settlement offers, not gathering enough evidence, not hiring an experienced personal injury attorney, and not keeping a record of expenses are some of the most common personal injury claim mistakes that our firm has seen. 

It is essential to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to avoid these mistakes and ensure that your rights are protected. If you or a loved one has experienced a severe accident, contact Cheves Briceno for a consultation today. Our team will be ready to assist you, and we will work to get your claim settled in the way you deserve.

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