Which Options Are Available To Those Seeking Compensation From An At-Fault Driver?
From an injury perspective, you have asserted a claim against the at-fault driver. If they have insurance, their insurance company will defend them and indemnify them, which means they’ll protect them up to a certain amount of money, which are the policy limits of that insurance policy. Normally, you will make a claim against the person that caused the wreck and that person’s insurance company will step in and pay for whatever damages they caused, up to that limit, but once you hit that limit, if your damages exceed that limit, that person is what we call underinsured, which means you will then make what’s called an underinsured motorist claim on your own insurance policy.
When people buy insurance, that’s what is meant by full coverage; one component of full coverage is underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage, which is there to protect you when someone hits you and they either have no insurance or an insufficient amount of insurance. In those cases, part of the claim is against the person who hurt you, and another part is against your own insurance. That’s why that insurance is there and why it’s important.
What Are the Steps to Take in Filing an Auto Accident Claim?
The first step is always to consult a lawyer because once the wreck happens, you have to remember several things; for one thing, you were a witness to the accident because you were involved. Someone who pulls up on the scene afterwards won’t necessarily be told the accurate story, so you need to make sure the police officer or whoever it is who may be taking information and investigating the accident knows your side of the story. Obviously, if you’re hurt too badly, you may not be able to give a statement, but people sometimes come to me and tell me they were in this wreck and certain things happened to them and it was not their fault, but they were taken to the hospital and when they got the police report, it indicated that they were at fault. The reason is because there were differing accounts of what happened or whatever the case may be.
That’s why compiling information such as who the witnesses are and getting contact information from them, so you can get in touch with them after the fact is so important; you never know whether the other driver will accurately tell the story of how the wreck happened. First things first; you need to always assume that the way the wreck happened needs to be documented somewhere somehow above and beyond just what you’re willing to say at the time you are deposed in the case later.
The second-most important thing you need to remember is that unless you go to a medical provider immediately, there is a medical record indicating what your issues are, whether it is serious pain, nerve pain, numbness or this, that or the other thing. Without getting medical care, nothing goes into a medical record, which means the insurance company will treat your injuries as if they never happened.
I’m not saying go to a doctor if you don’t need to, but if you’re hurting and you don’t go to a doctor, it will be as if you’re not hurting at all as far as the insurance company is concerned. You need to make sure that you have adequately covered your bases in proving that the wreck was not your fault one way or the other, whether you do that through witnesses or the evidence; you need to make sure your side of the story is known at the appropriate time and then, number two, if you’re having medical issues, you need to seek medical help or it will be as though it didn’t happen.
For more information on Compensation Options In Auto-Accident, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (205) 871-9990 today.
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