A personal injury claim is a complicated type of civil suit that requires a lot from a claimant. The typical plaintiff will need to understand rules such as filing deadlines, how to prove negligence and when to take a claim to trial. Unfortunately, several factors could sabotage your personal injury claim if you are not careful. Do your best to avoid them with help from a Dallas personal injury attorney.
Mistakes Made By Claimants
Several things can go wrong during the filing of a personal injury claim in Texas. It is up to you as a claimant to learn the rules for filing or else hire someone who does. From determining whether your insurance covers your injuries to knowing when to bring your case to trial, you will need to handle many matters to have a successful claim. Do your best to avoid the most common mistakes claimants make that sabotage claims.
- Failing to obtain immediate medical care. Claimants can sabotage their own personal injury claims by waiting to see a doctor too long after an accident. Delaying medical care is a reason insurance companies use to deny injury claims. They may argue that you made your injuries worse by failing to see a doctor immediately.
- Waiting too long to file a claim. The courts in Texas take statutes of limitations very seriously. If you miss your deadline to file a personal injury claim, it could end your case before it begins. Insurance companies also take deadlines seriously. Report your injury to an insurance company right away to make sure you have a valid claim.
- Not knowing how to deal with insurance claims adjusters. The mistake of telling an insurance adjuster too much could hurt your case. Do not admit fault or give more information than the adjuster requests. Do not accept a settlement offer until you have spoken to a personal injury lawyer about the true value of your case.
You can avoid common plaintiff mistakes by hiring a lawyer and allowing him or her to take over your personal injury claim for you. A lawyer in Dallas will know how to negotiate with insurance companies and take other steps to protect your right to compensation. You can rest assured in the strength and validity of your case when you hire an attorney to handle legal matters on your behalf.
Some issues that could sabotage your injury claim are beyond your control, such as pre-existing injuries. A pre-existing condition related to the injury for which you are claiming damages could give your insurance company a reason to deny benefits. If you are filing for a back injury, for example, but a previous workplace accident gave you a slipped disk, your insurance company might try to allege that you already had the injury in question.
Avoid a pre-existing injury negatively impacting your claim by properly documenting your new injury. Keep all medical documents, test results, x-rays, doctor’s letters, diagnoses and treatment plans related to the injury in your current claim. You should also avoid signing any paperwork from your insurer that grants the company access to your medical records. These papers often request access to your full medical history, not just the documents connected to your most recent injury, so the company can deny a claim based on a pre-existing condition.
Insurance Bad Faith
Other common factors that sabotage personal injury claims in Texas have to do with bad faith by insurance companies. Your insurer might not treat your case fairly, honestly or in accordance with state insurance laws. Insurance bad faith could compromise your claim and lead to a negative outcome. Common examples of insurance bad faith are delaying your claim, denying benefits without a valid reason, avoiding your phone calls and refusing to offer a reasonable settlement. If you suspect insurance bad faith, contact a lawyer right away. Hiring a lawyer may be necessary to force an insurance company to treat your claim fairly.