If someone else’s negligence leaves you injured in an accident, you’ll file your accident claim with the insurance company of the at-fault party, but the path forward toward just compensation is likely far less straightforward than you realize. The insurance company is looking for any reason to deny or devalue your accident claim, and a potential reason is inconsistent statements (that render your claim less credible in the eyes of the insurance company). If you have an accident claim, one of the most important steps that you can take to help protect it is working closely with a Austin personal injury lawyer throughout the claims process.
What’s In This Guide
- Consistency with Insurers
- Personal Injury Claims
- To Be Fair
- Your Losses
- The Insurance Company Is Watching
- Protecting Your Insurance Claim
Consistency with Insurers
Consistency with insurers is key, and your accident claim is intended to represent the losses (or legal damages) that you’ve endured. If other aspects of your claim, the statements you make to the insurance company, your behavior generally, or even your social media posts don’t jibe with the losses you claim, the insurance company is going to take notice – and will continue to pay careful attention.
Even if the inconsistencies cited by the insurance company are innocent errors or misinterpretations, they can lead to an overall diminishment of your claim’s value, which is clearly less than ideal. You’ve been injured, and there is no reason to embellish or exaggerate this fact – you are seeking fair compensation that covers the losses you’ve actually suffered (in their entirety), and this requires putting together your strongest claim and supporting that claim consistently with your actions, words, documents, and communication with the insurance company.
Personal Injury Claims
Regardless of the kind of personal injury claim you file, consistency with insurers is paramount. While personal injury claims come in nearly limitless forms, some of the most common include:
- Traffic accidents like car, truck, pedestrian, motorcycle, and bike accidents
- Premises liability claims, such as slip and fall accidents and dog bites
- Accidents that cause catastrophic injuries
There are other kinds of claims that are very similar to personal injury claims, including wrongful death claims in which the victim succumbs to the injuries sustained in the accident.
To Be Fair
The insurance company will be getting in touch with you after the accident in question and will be looking for you to slip up down the line – by failing to support your original statements, it’s important to remember that being injured by someone else’s negligence can leave you dazed and confused – with an adrenaline rush that may be coupled with naturally occurring dread and anxiety. In other words, you’re not at your best, and you may not have a clear understanding of how serious your injuries are (adrenaline can actually mask very serious pain and can temporarily make your injuries seem less severe). Just because your account of your injuries evolves with time, however, does not mean that you are not being truthful and is not an indictment of your credibility. An important point to make here is that leaving communications with the insurance company in the capable hands of your personal injury attorney is generally in your best interest.
Those losses that you can seek compensation for in your accident claim include all the following categories:
- Your associated medical expenses (both current and ongoing)
- Your lost wages (both current and ongoing)
- Your physical and emotional pain and suffering
While you want your damages to be well represented in your accident claim, any exaggeration or error in reporting will be viewed as an inconsistency that the insurance company will redflag. Looking to your personal injury attorney to handle this aspect of your claim is the best policy.
The Insurance Company Is Watching
You’ve made a claim that outlines your injuries and attendant losses, and the insurance company will be watching to ensure that all the other pieces in the puzzle align with this assessment of your injuries. In other words, if you claim to have a serious back injury but spend the majority of your free time perfecting your professional level skateboard tricks, the insurance company is going to have something to say about it. The fact is that you need to be entirely honest about the severity of your injuries and you need to do what it takes to help ensure that you recover to the fullest degree possible – in support of your health and in support of your personal injury claim.
Protecting Your Insurance Claim
In order to help ensure that you maintain your focus on consistency with insurers, there are several important points to keep in mind throughout the claims process.
Communicating with the Insurance Company
The best strategy for ensuring consistency with insurers is allowing your dedicated personal injury attorney to deal with the insurance company on your behalf. Your attorney can provide the company with any information that it needs, and this approach diminishes the risk of inconsistencies in your claim.
Following Your Doctor’s Instructions
When you make it your policy to carefully follow your doctor’s instructions and advice, you do what’s best for your health and well-being, but you also demonstrate to the insurance company that your actions are consistent with your claim and that your injuries are as serious as you say they are.
Staying Off Social Media
The insurance company handling your claim wants to know what you are up to post-accident, and it recognizes that the best way to gauge your activity is by giving your social media accounts a careful look. The bottom line is that the insurance company is on the lookout for anything it can find that might be inconsistent with your claim, and you can count on it being extremely skilled at this practice. While your social media activity is likely innocent enough, there is simply no reason to provide the insurance company with information that it can manipulate for its own purposes.
Don’t Wait to Consult with an Experienced Austin Personal Injury Attorney
The accomplished Austin personal injury attorneys at The Patel Firm are well prepared and well positioned to skillfully advocate for your claim’s best possible resolution. To learn more, please don’t hesitate to contact or call us at 361-400-2036 today.