How to Maximize Your NYC Personal Injury Claim
Whether you have been injured as a result of medical malpractice, a slip-and-fall, or a car accident, filing a personal injury claim can help you recover financial compensation from the negligent party.
Filing a claim requires the proper filing of a lot of paperwork, conducting an investigation, and collecting evidence. As you move through the personal injury process, there are so many ways you can help your claim. There are also many ways you can hurt it. Read on to learn the best ways to maximize your NYC personal injury claim.
Seek Medical Treatment
Some injuries are very apparent after an accident. For example, if you are in a car accident and break your leg, you likely realize it immediately. Other injuries, such as concussions and whiplash, don’t always show symptoms right away, so you may not think you are hurt.
Even when you think you did not sustain any injuries, you should always see a doctor after an accident. A medical professional knows the signs and symptoms to look for so they can diagnose and treat your injuries. Treatment stops your injuries from becoming worse, and your safety and well-being are the most important priorities after an accident.
Tell the doctor how the injury occurred so they can record it in your medical documents. This proves the severity of your injuries to the at-fault party or their insurance company. If you don’t see a doctor following an accident, the party liable for paying damages can argue that you could not have been injured because you did not see a doctor.
Say Little About the Accident
In the immediate moments after an accident, you can feel upset, shocked, and agitated. Many people in this condition tend to talk a lot. They may want to know how the accident happened, think out loud, and even apologize that the accident occurred at all.
Talking too much is a mistake that could hurt your personal injury claim. Anything you say can be used against you, and the at-fault party can twist your words and take them out of context to make it appear as though you are to blame for the accident. Whether you are speaking to the police, a store manager, or anyone else following an accident, stick to the facts and say as little as possible.
You will also need support after an accident, and you should turn to family members to get it. Still, say as little as possible to them or at least tell them that the information is confidential and they are not to speak to anyone else about it. Try not to go too in-depth about the accident or your injuries when speaking to friends. Generally, you want to say as little as possible about the accident at all times unless you’re speaking to your attorney.
Dealing with Insurance Adjusters
An insurance adjuster may contact you in the hours or days following an accident. They will act very friendly and tell you they only want to help you get better. They may even offer a settlement right away.
You must know how to deal with the insurance adjuster, as it will make a significant difference in your case. The best tips for dealing with insurance adjusters include:
- Do not become too friendly with the adjuster. Approach them with a professional demeanor and remain that way during every interaction with them.
- Only speak about the facts of the accident. Tell the adjuster anything you remember and when you cannot recall certain details, tell them so. Do not guess or speculate about things you are unsure about.
- Remain honest at all times when speaking to the adjuster. Insurance adjusters have a great deal of experience speaking to accident victims, and they will be able to tell if you are being dishonest. If it is found you said something untrue, it will damage your credibility and you will not receive as much compensation if any at all.
- Do not give the adjuster your Social Security number or the contact information of friends and family members. If you do, they can use that information to learn information that can be used against you.
- When talking about your injuries, only relay information that is in the medical reports. The insurance company will obtain a copy of this, anyway. Do not offer your own opinion of the injuries or mention injuries you previously sustained.
- If the adjuster asks you to sign a medical release, refuse. If you sign this, they will go through your medical records looking for pre-existing injuries to build a case against your current injuries.
- Refuse any request for a recorded statement. The adjuster wants to obtain this so they can use your own words against you to deny, delay, or reduce your claim.
- Do not accept any settlement from an insurance adjuster until you have spoken to a lawyer.
Manage Your Social Media
It is easy for an insurance adjuster to find your social media profiles, and they will search for your profile to find information that can be used against you. They may look for pictures of you on a holiday and use that to show that you were not hurt because you could travel. It will not matter to them that the picture was taken months before the accident. To prevent the insurance company from finding material online that will hurt your case, make all content on your social accounts private.
It is best to make your content private vs deleting or deactivating your accounts, as this can lead to destruction of evidence. Remember, the insurance company can still find your profiles and look through your previous posts. They can also see if your friends tag you in certain posts. None of this is possible if you make your accounts private.
Contact the Experts
After an accident, the at-fault party and their insurance company are going to work against you at every turn. You need a New York City personal injury lawyer that is going to fight back against them. At Silberstein, Awad & Miklos, P.C., our seasoned attorneys will always ensure your best interests are protected while working tirelessly to ensure you receive the fair settlement you deserve.
Call us now at 1-877-ASK4SAM, or contact us online to schedule a free review of your case.