Q:

Do you have a case?

A:

Generally, if you were injured because someone was careless, you do. This applies to injuries that are caused by a reckless driver, a dangerous product, an employer that disables a guard and a store that has a dangerous sidewalk. If someone else is at fault and injures you, then you probably have a case.

Q:

How do you preserve evidence showing that the car wreck was the other driver's fault?

A:

  • Photograph the accident scene.
  • Measure the length of any skid marks or gouge marks in the roadway.
  • Photograph the interiors and exteriors of all vehicles involved in the accident. (If you believe the injuries to you or your passengers were caused by a defect in your vehicle, such as the failure of an air bag to deploy or the collapse of your seat back, it is crucial that your vehicle not be repaired or destroyed until an automotive design expert has inspected it.)
  • Get the name, address and phone number of anyone who witnessed the accident or who arrived at the scene shortly after.

Q:

How do you preserve evidence of how badly you were hurt?

A:

  • Photograph all areas of visible injury as soon as possible and take additional photographs during the recovery process to show the stages of recovery.
  • See your doctor as soon as possible after the accident and describe every area where you are experiencing pain or having other problems. This is extremely important! For example, if you fractured your leg in the accident, you may feel the most pain in your leg, but also notice your back hurts. It's very important that you tell your doctors about your back pain as well. It's possible that your back is injured and may continue to be a problem long after you recover from your broken leg. If you don't have your doctor document your back pain, the insurance company will try to claim that your back injury is not a result of the accident.
  • Keep receipts for all of your out-of-pocket expenses resulting from the accident. For example, gas spent traveling to and from the hospital and doctor's office, hotel and meal expenses, any medical supplies, bandages, rental of hospital beds, etc.
  • Track all the time your family or friends spent helping you, so that they can be reimbursed at the successful conclusion of your claim. For example, a family member takes time off work to drive you to the doctor, or if they help you with your household chores.

Q:

What are my rights?

A:

  • You have a right to receive money damages from the at-fault person's insurance company. The harms that you have suffered must be made up for by money damages.
  • Money damages pay for your medical bills and medical supplies.
  • Money damages pay you for the paychecks you lose while you are off work.
  • Money damages pay you to replace your loss of enjoyment of your life

Q:

Can I trust the other driver's insurance company?

A:

Because you are here looking for more information, you already suspect the answer to this question.

The insurance adjuster is probably being rude, abusive or may be ignoring your phone calls. That tells you something about his priorities. Consider who makes money if the insurance company gets away with paying you less than your case is worth. Why would the insurance company offer you anything even close to a fair amount if it can get away with paying you less? How will you know if the amount the insurance company offers is fair?

Q:

Is my own insurance company on my side?

A:

Your insurance company may act like it is concerned about you. But it is important to remember that your insurance company's concern is its own bottom line. Your insurance company will be looking to find a way to be sure that someone else pays. As long as someone else pays, your insurance company is not going to concern itself with whether you are treated fairly by the other driver's insurance company.

You know better than anyone that the worst part of having been hurt is that the pain keeps you from doing the things you like to do. The amount of money you should get depends on how badly you are hurt. If any of your injuries are permanent or long lasting, your award must be even higher.