Dos and Don’ts of Car Accident Claims
Auto accidents happen and they are usually impossible to predict. Although you may be caught off guard by an Oklahoma car accident, you can take steps to prepare for what could happen following an incident—regardless of whether or not you are at fault or are the victim of another party’s negligence. The first thing you should remember when pursuing an accident claim is that it is always best to work with an Oklahoma City accident lawyer who understands the law surrounding auto accidents. Below are major dos and don’ts of an accident claim.
What to do:
- Understand your insurance policy. A lot of people purchase insurance just because it is required by law and not necessarily because they might need it. Purchasing uninsured motorist coverage is a very affordable and effective means of insuring yourself when another driver is at fault and has no insurance. Millions of motorists incur auto accidents every year, which means that there is quite a high probability that you will be involved in an accident at some point in time. This is why you should always be mindful about your auto insurance purchase and take time to understand the policy so you can be prepared for the worst.
- Inform your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible and respond to their information requests promptly. Any delay in relaying or refusal to provide information may cause them to deny your claim.
- Gather as much information about the accident and take pictures of the scene and damage to your vehicle or property as well as the injuries you sustain. These will serve as powerful evidence to support your claim. Collect all basic information about the party at fault, including their insurance information. Keep track of all your communications with the at-fault party, their lawyer, and/or their insurance provider.
- Save bills and receipts of all expenses relating to the accident claim, including medical bills, repair work receipts, and all other losses relating to the incident
What not to do:
- It is the job of the at-fault party’s lawyer or insurance agent to minimize and even eliminate your recovery. Never give a recorded statement until you speak with an auto accident attorney. Never admit liability even when you think you are at fault. Avoid making statements that could hurt your claim or be used against you.
- Don’t assume that an insurance agent has the final word on your claim’s worth. Hire an Oklahoma City accident lawyer to ensure an accurate estimate of the claim’s value.
- Do not accept full/final payment unless you are certain that the amount offered is sufficient to compensate for all your losses; and
- Do not sign a waiver or release or any document that you do not completely understand. Seek the help of an experienced lawyer to protect your rights.