Some people think that, if they’re in a car accident, they’re guaranteed a legal settlement. They figure, as long as they hire an attorney, they’ll get hundreds of thousands of dollars. It doesn’t work this way in the real world.
Getting into a car accident doesn’t entitle you to money. Several things have to happen before you can even think about filing a car accident lawsuit. In a nutshell, these things include:
- Someone else has to be responsible for your car accident
- You have to be injured
- You have to suffer actual damages
- You have to be less than 50% at fault to recover
- You need to be able to prove all of the above
- You need an experienced car wreck lawyer in Lake Charles
If you can’t prove these things, you’re not going to get any money. That’s why it’s so important that you do certain things immediately following your car accident. If you don’t do these things, you could cost yourself any compensation you otherwise would’ve been entitled to.
Some of the things you absolutely must do after your Louisiana car accident include:
- You must call the police. The cops will come to the scene and conduct an investigation. The information in the police report is what will help your Lake Charles accident lawyer prove the other driver was at fault.
- You need to seek medical treatment immediately after your accident. You need to be able to prove you were injured. You also have to prove that your injuries were caused by the accident. Your attorney will need to rely on your medical records to prove these things.
- You should contact an experienced car accident lawyer in Lake Charles. While there is no law that says you need a lawyer to file a car accident lawsuit, it does help to have one. Your lawyer understands the law. They also have experience dealing with insurance adjusters.
If you do these things, you increase your chances of recovery. If you don’t do these things, however, you risk losing your right to compensation.
Common Mistakes That Can Cost You a Settlement
Even if you eventually hire a car accident lawyer in Lake Charles, that doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed a settlement. There are certain mistakes you can make immediately after your crash that can ruin your chances of recovery later on.
Some of the most common mistakes people make in the hours after their car accident include:
- They refuse medical treatment – If you don’t go to the hospital, there’s no way for your lawyer to prove you were hurt.
- They don’t go to the hospital until days or weeks after the crash – If you wait too long to go the hospital, the defendant will claim you were hurt some other way. It gets harder to prove that this isn’t true the longer you wait.
- You agree not to call the cops – You need the police to come to the scene to do their investigation. They’ll prepare a police report that has all the information your lawyer needs to prove who was at fault.
- They admit fault at the scene – Never tell the other driver or the cops that you were at fault. Some people say this even if it isn’t true. They hate confrontation so they say whatever they think will ease the tension.
- They tell the officer they aren’t hurt – If you do this, it can be used against you later on. Even if you’re not sure whether you’re injured or not, never admit that you weren’t hurt. This will go into the police report. The defendant’s lawyer will argue that you were not hurt and will use your statement as evidence.
- They talk about their accident on social media – You have to be careful about what you post on social media. If you post jokes or sarcastic remarks about the accident, the insurance company and the defendant’s lawyer will use them against you.
- They lie to their attorney – Make sure you are honest with your Lake Charles car wreck lawyer. They can’t prepare your case if they don’t know the truth.
Contact an Experienced Car Wreck Lawyer in Lake Charles
If you get into a car accident in Louisiana, you need to follow the advice outlined above. Part of that involves calling an experienced car wreck lawyer in Lake Charles. Do this early on so they can be by your side throughout the entire process.
Call Veron, Bice, Palermo, & Wilson today and schedule your free initial consultation. And remember – you pay nothing until you settle your case.