According to the Tennessee Department of Transport (TDOT), there is an auto accident once every 2 minutes and 37 seconds in the state of Tennessee. If you have been involved in one of these auto accidents, one of the most important things to remember is that anything you say or do at the accident scene could be used in court if you decide to have an auto accident lawyer in Knoxville file a personal injury lawsuit. It is often our second nature to be polite and cooperative. However, if you admit fault or apologize, it could damage a future personal injury claim. It is always a good idea to consult an auto accident lawyer in Knoxville before you make any kind of statement beyond exchanging insurance details.
Here are some of the other common mistakes that could be detrimental to an auto accident injury claim:
1 - Refusing Medical Treatment
As an auto accident lawyer in Knoxville, we often see clients who have refused medical treatment following an auto accident. Sometimes it is simply because they don’t want to bother EMTs or a doctor if it’s just minor injuries. At other times, they may not immediately realize they have an injury. However, it is important to understand that an auto accident injury may not be instantly symptomatic, especially if you are in shock. It is always good to get checked over following an accident to evaluate and document potential injuries. If you refuse medical treatment, insurance providers may cite your medical records or lack thereof as evidence that your injuries were not caused by the accident.
2 - Failure to Follow Up on Treatment
If you go for that initial examination at the hospital following an auto accident, failure to follow up with a doctor regarding treatment can also be a mistake. Any auto accident lawyer in Knoxville will recommend that you continue with the treatment your doctor provides until they are satisfied that you have recovered from your injuries or in the case of more severe injuries until your long-term care plan is in place. If you fail to continue with the recommended treatment, this can be presented as evidence that your injuries were not as extensive as you claim.
3 - Consenting to a Recorded Statement
It is important not to give a statement before discussing your case with your auto accident injury lawyer in Knoxville. However, one type of statement to particularly avoid is a recorded one. There is no benefit to allowing an insurance provider to record your statement, but they can use what you say as evidence against you in court. Insurers don’t like paying out, so even something you feel was innocent and harmless could be used against you. This might include apologizing for any part of the accident. It is better to consult your auto accident lawyer in Knoxville before making any kind of statement recorded or otherwise.
4 - Speaking With Insurance Companies
Just like making a recorded statement, it is not advised by your auto accident lawyer in Knoxville to discuss your accident with the insurance company. It is relatively common for the insurance provider to call auto accident victims within the first 24 to 48 hours following the accident. If they cannot make contact, then they may send a letter. In some cases, they may even attempt to send out a settlement check early in the process. However, the small print usually states that this is an acceptable settlement if the check is cashed, and you cannot pursue further compensation. It is best to avoid speaking with the insurance company and allow an auto accident lawyer in Knoxville to handle communications.
Hiring an Auto Accident Injury Lawyer is in Your Best Interest
Dealing with an auto accident injury claim can be tricky. It can be challenging to prove fault, and insurance companies will protect their own interests aggressively. It is always wise to first seek medical attention, even for seemingly minor injuries, and then find an experienced auto accident injury lawyer in Knoxville who can help to guide you through the process.
Butler, Vines and Babb is a leading law firm in Knoxville, TN, with extensive litigation experience in Medical Malpractice Law, Birth Injury Law, Trucking Accident Law, Personal Injury Law, and Business Law. Contact us today at www.bvblaw.com or call 865-637-3531.
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