One of the first and most frequently asked questions by our clients, who have suffered an injury from an auto accident, is “What’s my case worth?” There is no simple answer as no two auto accident injury cases are exactly the same.
There are many variables that are considered when determining your personal injury claim resulting from an auto accident. In addition to the extent of your injury, who was at fault for the car accident and if this person is insured.
The factors listed below are almost always taken into consideration and can greatly affect the compensation you get regarding your auto accident claim.
- Police Report – Whether you did or did not obtain a police report will be important information for the insurance adjustor reviewing your case. These reports provide specific details regarding the accident, as well as the officer who responded to the scenes information. In some cases the insurance company will use the officer to confirm details and statements that the injured party makes on their claim.
- Medical Attention – Whether or not you decided to seek medical attention after your accident can definitely affect your claim. If you did seek medical attention, how quickly you sought it can also affect your overall case. You should visit either the emergency room or your doctor immediately after the accident.
- Existing Injuries – If you had pre-existing injuries before the accident it is important to be able to differentiate between those and any new injuries. If you had pre-existing injuries you should ask your doctor to reexamine those injured areas. Being able to compare your pre-existing injuries with any new injury is crucial, and proves that the accident did cause additional damage. An aggravation of a pre-existing condition, such as a bad back, is considered a new injury and you should be compensated for this, however insurance company claims adjusters will try to diminish the value of your claim stating you already had the condition. Here is where an experienced auto accident lawyer can help.
- Citations – If there were any citations issued by the responding police officer, at the scene of the accident, then the insurance company claims adjuster will take these into consideration. The typical types of citations are drunk driving, running a red light or a stop sign, among many others.
- Statements – Any statements that are made after the auto accident, to other drivers or passengers or the police officer, can have a big effect on your auto accident claim. Even though emotions will be high in a situation like this it is important to remember to stay calm and think before you make any statements to the police officer or any other witnesses.
- Witness Testimony – If there were any witnesses to the accident, their testimonies will be reviewed by the insurance company. These statements can have a negative or positive affect on your claim depending on what was said and by whom.
- Photographs – Any photographs that were taken at the scene of the accident can also impact your claim. They can be helpful in proving who was at fault for the accident.
- Lost Wages – Any records or documents, that can validate the amount of days or wages that you lost due to the accident, will be reviewed to help determine lost wages compensation.
- Personal Injury Limits – If the party at fault has only limited amount of liability insurance coverage, then this can affect the amount of compensation that you receive regardless of the extent of your injuries. Many people carry underinsurance coverage on their auto policy to compensate them if the other party does not have enough liability coverage to pay for all your injuries. An experienced RI auto accident lawyer can help you through this process of determining how much insurance coverage is available to you.
- Degree of Fault – Whether or not you were determined to be the cause of the accident or not may have a negative or positive impact on your case. If you were ultimately deemed at fault, then it may negatively effect your case. The other side being, if you were decided to not be at fault, then that will help your claim significantly.
Keeping these factors in mind if you are involved in a collision can be crucial to the success of your claim. They may have either a good or bad effect on the compensation you receive, and it’s important to be aware of anything that may impact your case. You can compare the elements listed above with the real world facts of your case to get an idea as to whether your compensation will be affected.
Have you or a loved one been injured in an auto accident?
If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident you may be entitled to compensation. Dealing with the insurance company can be overwhelming, it is important that you contact an experienced RI Auto Accident Lawyer to make sure that you receive the legal help that you deserve. d’Oliveira and Associates has many years of experience in handling these specific cases.
Feel free to contact us at 1-800-992-6878, stop by one of our 15 locations, or fill out a contact form for a free legal consultation. There are no legal fees until you receive a settlement or award.