How to Get the Most Money from Your Insurance Claim
The costs of treating an injury after an accident can add up quickly. Medical bills are expensive and lead to significant financial strain for many. Worrying about whether you can afford ongoing treatment or take time off work to recover is normal. You might face massive debt if you don’t have the money to pay upfront for your expenses.
Resolving these issues if you were injured by someone else’s wrongdoing requires pursuing a personal injury case. The at-fault party should be liable for your injury and resulting losses. However, securing an insurance settlement or favorable jury verdict isn’t as simple as you think. You must take immediate action after the accident and provide substantial evidence to prove the value of your case.
Who Is Liable for the Accident?
You must determine who is at fault for the accident and get their insurance coverage information to hold someone liable for your injury. If you establish liability incorrectly, you might file a claim with the wrong insurance company. That can delay a financial recovery as you waste time gathering and submitting evidence to an insurer that can’t process your claim.
If you were injured in a car crash caused by another driver, you could file a claim with their auto liability insurance carrier. In Texas, every motorist must carry liability coverage. Once you establish liability, you can ask for the driver’s insurance information and initiate a claim.
Under other circumstances, the liable party might be a business owner. You could file a claim with the owner’s commercial liability insurer if you slipped on a wet floor or were hurt due to the dangerous conditions on the property.
What Will My Compensation Cover?
The money you receive in an insurance claim can compensate you for initial accident-related expenses, such as:
- Ambulance service
- Emergency room visit
- Diagnostic testing
Compensation might also cover the future cost of medical care if you require ongoing treatment. These expenses can include:
- Surgical procedures
- Chiropractic treatments
- Physical therapy
- Assistive medical devices
- Follow-up doctor’s appointments
- Home healthcare
You can also negotiate a settlement for your lost wages, damage to personal property, and intangible losses, such as pain and suffering and mental anguish. Accounting for the value of these losses is essential. Although some are difficult to calculate, the insurance company should compensate you for the emotional or physical suffering you endure from the accident.
How to Maximize the Value of Your Claim
You should not wait to build a case against the person or company responsible for the incident. Waiting too long might prohibit you from obtaining financial recovery. Although insurance companies don’t typically impose deadlines, the policy might indicate that filing promptly or within a reasonable amount of time is necessary. If you wait a year before filing, the insurer might deny your claim or reduce its value.
There is also a timeframe you must follow to sue someone. In Texas, the statute of limitations allows a two-year timeframe to file a lawsuit. That means you have two years from the accident date to initiate your lawsuit against the at-fault party. You can lose your right to compensation if two years pass before you file.
Start working on your personal injury claim immediately after the accident. If you believe someone else is at fault, taking the necessary steps to prove their misconduct is beneficial. You should follow these steps after an accident to maximize the value of your claim and improve your chance of securing a full and fair settlement:
- Gather evidence at the scene – If your injury isn’t too severe and it’s safe to walk around, obtain evidence at the accident scene. Take pictures, talk to witnesses, and collect any other information that might support your claim.
- Request the accident report – Whether you were injured on someone else’s property or in a car accident, request a copy of the accident/incident report. Initial documentation of the incident can show when it occurred and other relevant information.
- Calculate future expenses – Getting compensation to pay for past expenses is important. However, you must consider future costs you might incur from the accident. If you have a permanent or debilitating injury, months or years of treatment might be necessary. Forgetting to calculate your future expenses into a proposed settlement might require you to pay out of pocket for ongoing care, household assistance, and other costs.
- Seek treatment – Go to the hospital or visit your primary physician for an exam. The doctor can diagnose your injury and recommend any necessary follow-up care. You should continue treating your injury until you heal, or your medical providers release you. Stopping treatment too soon or allowing too much time to pass between appointments can damage your case. The insurer might reduce the value of your claim if the medical evidence shows your injury isn’t that serious.
- Maintain records – Keep track of your symptoms and document them in a pain journal. Describe how each symptom feels, when you experience them, and whether any worsen during specific activities. You should also maintain records, such as hospital reports, physical therapy notes, physician statements, and other documents related to the accident.
- Don’t accept the first offer – The insurance carrier might not dispute liability. However, that doesn’t mean they’ll offer an appropriate amount in settlement. Typically, insurers start low, hoping the accident victim will accept. You should consult an attorney before accepting any settlement.
- Hire a lawyer – Hiring a personal injury lawyer promptly after the accident is vital. They can guide you through the process of pursuing compensation from the insurer and find ways to strengthen the value of your case.
Get Help Maximizing the Value of Your Claim
At Loewy Law Firm, we have a proven track record of success in securing favorable settlements and jury verdicts for injured clients in Texas. When you hire us, we will determine the value of your claim and try to recover the maximum possible settlement we can get for you. You will be our priority and receive legal guidance and support until the end.
If you were injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, call Loewy Law Firm at (512) 957-9858 for a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Austin, TX, today.