Personal Injury Attorneys Helping Victims Obtain Higher Settlement Amounts in Chicago
An accident case is inherently stressful and confusing. Victims have compounding medical bills, emotional and physical suffering, and anxiety associated with their injury. Worse, there is no sure answer on how long the claim may take. All the unknown factors combined with the pain and emotional suffering a victim goes through can cause anyone to make mistakes.
While errors are normal, in a personal injury lawsuit, even small mistakes can significantly lower your settlement or eliminate your ability to seek compensation altogether. Therefore, it is important that you understand these mistakes and avoid them at all costs.
Common Mistakes that Affect Your Settlement
- Lying about your case. You must be honest about all details about your case. You cannot lie, omit, or exaggerate any detail. Doing so lessens your trustworthiness. When a plaintiff is not trusted by the jury or even the insurer, it is unlikely that he or she will receive full settlement value on the case.
- Ignoring instructions by the court or on insurance forms. If you are completing insurance forms, be sure to follow all directions and complete them in their entirety. If you are instructed by the court to do something, you must follow the directions.
- Speaking to others about your pending case. You should not talk to anyone except your attorney about your pending lawsuit. If you are contacted by an insurance claims adjuster to give an official statement, direct them to your lawyer. Also, do not discuss details with friends or family, and avoid social media at all costs.
- Accepting a settlement without consulting an attorney. If you have not yet consulted an attorney, do not accept any settlement given to you by an insurance company. Insurers often give less compensation than is warranted, because they know that you do not have an attorney looking out for your best interests.
- Ignoring the need for medical attention. You must seek medical attention immediately after your accident. Furthermore, you must follow all physician instructions, attend follow-up appointments, and continue with care as given by your physician. Failure to do so could be misconstrued as admitting your injuries are not as severe as you claim.
- Not reporting prior injuries. Prior injuries do not eliminate your opportunity for settlement, but failing to disclose them will. You must be honest about past injuries, and be honest if they were aggravated by the accident.
The Biggest Mistake: Not Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney to Represent You
While you may think your case is clear and that there is no need to call a professional, an attorney can help you avoid making these costly errors that eliminate your settlement.