After getting into an accident, you should file a personal injury claim and lawsuit right away. Many people do not realize that there is a set time limit for when you have to do so, and if you cross that threshold, you will not be able to file a lawsuit. To protect yourself and get the best chance of recovering financial damages, you should get the ball rolling and file your claim as quickly as possible.
Filing Your Injury Claim With Help From a Personal Injury Lawyer
After your car accident, you can file a claim with your own insurance company. To do so, you will need your personal information and your insurance identification card with your policy number. There should be an 800 number on the back for the claims processing department. When you call, they will ask questions about your accident. Feel free to provide them with basic details only, avoid elaborating, and do not guess on anything or provide unnecessary information. They will be recording the call and may use what you say against you later on. Through this process, you will be given a claims number that can be used at the doctor’s office or at the auto body repair shop – just make sure you go to approved locations.
The Process of Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit Can Be Fairly Complicated
In theory, dealing with your accident should be as easy as calling your insurance company and opening a claim. In reality, it can be incredibly complicated and time-consuming. If you are unfamiliar with the process, you may find yourself overwhelmed and pressed for time. The amount of questions and paperwork the insurance company requires can become tedious quickly. In addition, if you do decide to file a lawsuit, there are legal forms and paperwork that must be correctly filled out, filed with the court, and served on the other party. Doing so without any legal training can be beyond difficult. So much so, it is rare for someone to not have problems based on technicalities, even if the substance of the claim is accurate and worthy. This is why it pays to work with a lawyer.
When you hire a personal injury lawyer, you have someone on your side who will negotiate with the insurance company for you. If they make a fair settlement offer, you may not need to go to court. If you do, however, you should be prepared to:
- Complete interrogatories (written questions)
- Give a deposition (recorded interview)
- Tell your story (before and during trial)
An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you prepare for this, so you can feel confident in your ability to state what happened and answer questions in a calm fashion. This is particularly beneficial if you have to give a deposition or take the stand during a trial.