Common Mistakes to Avoid After a Car Accident
June 21, 2021
With a state as large as Texas, it’s no surprise that car accidents are quite common. According to the Texas Department of Transportation statistics, 256,797 persons were injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2019. Being injured in a traffic crash is an emotional and difficult experience. With emotions running high and lots of misleading information, the steps you take following the car accident can inadvertently affect the outcome of a personal injury claim.
At the Law Office of Joseph Onwuteaka, P.C., I have the experience and resources to assist car accident victims in their injury claims. As an experienced Texas personal injury attorney, I can review and investigate your situation and explore your available legal options to seek compensation. I can fight on your side to protect your legal rights and help pursue justice for your injuries. My firm proudly serves clients across Houston, Harris County, Texas, and the surrounding areas.
Common Mistakes You Can
Avoid After a Car Accident
The moments following a car accident can be confusing to sort through. You can possibly hurt your case by what you do or what you fail to do. When involved in a traffic accident, here are some common mistakes to avoid:
Seek Medical Help Immediately
The first thing to do following a crash is to get immediate medical treatment for any injuries. Call 911 to get emergency medical assistance for injuries to yourself or other victims. A doctor can assess your condition, provide adequate treatment, and help avoid potential complications. A qualified physician can determine the full magnitude of your injuries and ensure that things are well-documented in your medical report.
Never Admit Guilt
When involved in a car accident, you can cooperate with law enforcement by providing them with accurate details of the events that occurred, but you should never admit that you were responsible for the accident. Admitting guilt puts you at risk of having an injury claim or lawsuit filed against you.
Do Not Wait Too Long to File a Claim
Another common mistake often made by accident victims is waiting too long before filing an injury claim. If you delay, you may exceed the Texas car accident statute of limitations. If this happens, you will be barred from seeking damages. As time passes, you may also forget important details or lose relevant documentation.
Always Call the Police While at the Scene
According to Texas Transportation Code Section 601.004, motor-vehicle operators are required to report any traffic accident that results in an injury, death, or property damage in excess of $1,000. If you report the collision to law enforcement, an officer will file a report. You may obtain copies of the police report to pursue your injury claims.
Gather As Much Evidence As Possible
To pursue an injury claim, you will need as much evidence as possible. It is important that you obtain relevant information and necessary documentation after the accident. Obtain police reports, witness statements and testimonies, and accident scene photos.
Speaking to Insurance Companies
Giving a recorded statement to the insurance provider or their adjuster before consulting with your legal counsel is not advisable and can jeopardize your injury claim. During your conversation, you may inadvertently leave out some crucial information about the car accident. The claims adjuster may take your statements out of context and use them to discredit your claim or ask contradictory questions to create inconsistency.
Never Accept the First Settlement Offer
According to a personal injury study by Martindale-Nolo Research, claimants who accepted the insurance company's first offer received settlements that were, on average, $30,700 lower than those received by plaintiffs who held out for a better deal. Some insurance providers use bad faith tactics such as offering low-ball first settlement offers. If the insurance company offers you a settlement offer that is significantly lower than the actual worth of your injury claim, you should not accept it.
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney Immediately
Dealing with an insurance provider after a car accident can be really frustrating. Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is important to help you file injury claims or negotiate a fair financial settlement with insurance companies.
Put My Experience On Your Side
Being involved in a car accident can be overwhelming and affect you physically, financially, and emotionally. You don't have to face these challenges all alone. When injured in a traffic crash, you need to act quickly and hire an experienced personal injury attorney to advocate for your legal rights and help you avoid costly mistakes when pursuing rightful compensation for your injuries.
At the Law Office of Joseph Onwuteaka, P.C., I have devoted my career to handling personal injury cases and protecting the rights of car accident victims. As your legal counsel, I will evaluate all the facts of your case and conduct a comprehensive, private investigation. I will gather all relevant information, work to prove fault, and estimate case value. Using my extensive experience, I will fight to protect your rights and help negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
Contact my firm — the Law Office of Joseph Onwuteaka, P.C. — today to schedule a free one-on-one consultation. I can offer you the knowledgeable legal counsel, support, and representation you need to seek fair financial compensation for your injuries, property damage, and any additional pain and suffering. My firm proudly represents car accident victims and their families across Houston, Harris County, Texas, and the surrounding areas.