Ways to Improve the Value of Your Injury Case
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident or suffered a personal injury in Texas, the first step should always be to seek medical treatment for your injuries. Unfortunately, getting proper medical treatment is easier said than done. There are many obstacles to obtaining medical care.
You might be asking yourself the following questions:
- How will my medical bills get paid?
- How will I get the money I’ve lost from being out of work?
- How will I be reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses?
- How will my car get fixed? / Who will pay for a replacement?
- How will I be compensated for mental anguish, pain and suffering?
Today’s insurance companies are bigger and more powerful than ever before. To obtain a fair settlement, you need ways to improve the value of your personal injury case… to level the playing field, which is where we come in. The Carabin & Shaw Law Firm can help you negotiate with even the toughest insurance companies.
Sadly, insurance companies frequently resort to underhanded tactics in order to avoid paying fair settlements. For example, an insurance company might initially claim that an accident was not their insured party’s fault. If that does not work, then they might say that the victim’s injuries were pre-existing. Our Texas personal injury attorneys work to make sure that insurance companies don’t unfairly manipulate victims.
At Carabin & Shaw, we understand how crucial it is to help victims understand the various factors that influence the value of your injury claim. Here, we’ve compiled a list of general advice to help you increase the value of your injury claim.Ways to Improve the Value of Your Personal Injury Case
1. Choose the Right Law Firm
Not all lawyers are created equal. If you were hurt in an auto accident, you need to hire an experienced personal injury lawyer. Like doctors, lawyers have specialties. You wouldn’t get a tooth pulled at the chiropractor, so don’t expect a general practice lawyer or family lawyer to know how to handle your personal injury case.
Unlike general lawyers, personal injury lawyers have years of experience in fighting insurance companies – both in and out of the courthouse. We also have the financial ability to stand up against even the most difficult defendants.
You also need to choose a law firm with litigation experience. While most cases settle without the necessity of filing a lawsuit, some proceed into litigation. In the last five years alone, our attorneys have filed and prosecuted over 500 injury and death cases, making us one of the most experienced personal injury law firms in Texas.
2. Choose the Right Doctors
Just as it’s crucial to choose the right lawyer, it’s also essential to make sure your doctor has experience treating accident victims. Popping into the urgent care is fine for a sore throat but not for a severe injury resulting from a car wreck.
3. Secure All Evidence
For personal injury cases, this is often the most crucial step. Immediately following the wreck, document the crash as thoroughly as possible. If you are able to do so safely, take photos of all involved vehicles and passengers from multiple angles, photograph street signs and weather conditions, mark tire positions with chalk, and record the names and numbers of witnesses.
4. Document Injuries
When you’re collecting evidence in the aftermath of your wreck, make sure to also secure evidence of your physical injuries. Documenting your injuries is just as important as documenting the vehicles; take photos of any bruises, scars, or scrapes you endured in the accident as soon as possible. This evidence can greatly improve the value of a case.
Keep all information given to you from your doctor regarding your injuries and diagnoses, and keep your own notes as well detailing symptoms and medications. The more detailed your record is, the stronger your case will be.
5. Be Mindful of Malicious Tactics
Some insurance companies may attempt to damage or destroy your case. Do not sign anything at the site of the accident (except police reports) without speaking to an attorney, and know about the strategies that insurance companies might try to use to hurt your case:
- Encouraging Delayed Treatment: Some insurers may encourage the victim to postpone seeking medical attention or treatment. This in turn can negatively affect the value of a case or cause medical issues for the victim.
- “Running the Clock” on the Statute of Limitations: A claimant only has a limited period to file an injury case in Texas, usually only two years from the date to loss. Some insurance adjusters will attempt to delay and/or postpone resolving a case in hopes of outbarring the claim.
6. Tell your Doctor About Everything that Hurts
Don’t hold back. Your doctor needs to know about all of your injuries. Your medical records should include your specific medical complaints, the doctor’s findings, details of your injuries, and the treatment that you have received. The insurance company will base its offer partially on this documentation, and most insurance companies will not compensate a victim for undocumented injuries. 7. Follow Your Doctor’s Orders!
Follow your treating doctor’s advice. If the doctor tells you to come in for treatment three days a week, but you only go once a week, you might be risking your health and the value of your case.
How so? Well, if you’ve skipped appointments or treatments, the insurance company evaluating your claim may contend that if you were truly injured, you would have followed your doctor’s recommendations. 8. Keep a Journal
Logging your symptoms each day can be one of the most effective pieces of evidence of your pain and suffering claim. A daily diary can help document and provide an accurate account of one’s injuries and pain. For more information about tracking your symptoms and other ways to improve the value of your personal injury case, call our firm for a free consultation.
9. Watch What You Say
After a wreck, it’s tempting to comfort the other driver by saying, “I’m all right” or “I’m OK.” But any statement made in the aftermath of a wreck can be used against you. (Something like “I don’t believe I need medical attention at this time” is a much safer bet). Your best course of action is to avoid speaking to anyone about the accident – especially the insurance companies – until you’ve contacted your Texas attorney.
10. DO NOT DISCUSS YOUR CASE
The only people you should ever speak to about your claim are:
- Your lawyer and their staff
- Your doctor and their staff
At Carabin & Shaw, we believe you deserve to be fairly compensated for lost wages, medical expenses, and any suffering you’ve endured due to your accident. Let us help you get the fair settlement you deserve by calling us any time at 1.800.862.1260.