There are thousands of accidents in the U.S. every year. Thankfully, most of these accidents are relatively minor. The accidents and passengers walk away with just a few bumps and bruises. There may be property damage, but their auto insurance will take care of that. Not many people think they will have to file an accident claim. They figure they can just exchange insurance information with the other driver and go about their day. They don’t call the cops. They don’t go to the hospital. And then they wonder, months later, why they can’t get compensation for their injuries.
Louisiana accident lawyers see this all the time. They have clients call their office months after their car accident asking to schedule a free consultation. When they come in, the explain that their insurance claim was denied and they don’t know what to do. They can’t afford to pay their medical bills or get their car fixed.
One of the reasons for this is that they didn’t take the accident seriously enough when it happened. They thought that, because they only had a few broken bones, it wasn’t worth hiring a lawyer. Now they find themselves with no money and no answers. This is why it’s so important to contact an experienced car accident lawyer in Lake Charles right away.
Don’t Underestimate Your Medical Bills
If you’ve ever been to the emergency room, you should know how expensive it can be. Even if you have insurance, you’ll have to deal with co-pays and deductibles. Depending on your insurance plan, your deductible for a hospital visit can be hundreds or thousands of dollars.
If you suffer broken bones, lacerations or other injuries, you may need surgery. You may have to get long-term physical therapy. Minutes after the accident, there’s no way to know how serious your injuries are. You may think you’re fine when, in reality, you’ve suffered some pretty serious injuries.
Often times, people think that broken bones are just minor injuries. However, if you’ve broken a bone before, you know what they involve. You’ll need surgery and physical therapy. You may be out of work for weeks or months. You may never fully recover from your injuries.
All of this medical care costs money. If you don’t file a legal claim, you’ll have to pay all of these bills out of pocket. You need an experienced car accident lawyer to help you file an accident claim. They’ll handle your lawsuit if that’s what they need to do. This way, at least the defendant or their insurance company will be liable for your damages.
You May Find Out Your Injuries are Worse Down the Road
If you don’t file a legal claim right away, you will lose your right to do it later. Even though the statute of limitations in Louisiana is one (1) year, that doesn’t mean you have a year to file your accident claim.
Insurance companies require that you file your accident claim within a “reasonable time.” Most of the time, they expect to have their claim within a few days of your accident. If you miss your window, your claim will be denied.
If you assume that your claim isn’t big enough to warrant legal action, you’re asking for trouble. Once the statute of limitations period is up, you are forever barred from filing a lawsuit. Your Lake Charles accident lawyer won’t be able to help you. You’re much better off meeting with an experienced auto accident attorney and having them evaluate your case.
If you don’t do this, you could run into serious problems down the road. Let’s consider the following scenario:
You get into an accident on January 1. You don’t think your injuries are that serious. You don’t file an insurance claim. Nor do you file a lawsuit. A year goes by. On January 15 of the next year, you start to have memory problems. You also start to experience intense back pain and stiffness. You go to the doctor and they say that it looks like you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury. They estimate that it happened a year prior.
Because you waited more than a year to get checked out, there’s nothing you can do. It’s too late to file an accident claim. And, your claim is barred by the Louisiana statute of limitations.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer in Lake Charles Today
If you’ve been involved in an accident – even a minor one – you need to call an experienced car accident lawyer in Lake Charles right away. They can review your case and let you know whether you have a valid claim.
Call Veron, Bice, Palermo, & Wilson, LLC and schedule your free initial consultation today.