COMMON MISTAKES TO AVOID AFTER AN ACCIDENT
In the state of Colorado, fatal car accident numbers have remained steady over the past two decades. Current data from the Colorado Department of Transportation reports that a total of 574 people were killed in car accidents in 2020. The number of fatal accidents may grow as the Department of Transportation receives new accident data for 2020.
Many of the car accidents that involve injuries or death are the result of negligent conduct, such as distracted driving, violating traffic laws, or driving under the influence. Whatever the cause may be, injured victims deserve recourse. However, to seek recourse, accident victims must take the proper steps to protect their rights following an accident. Knowing what not to do can be extremely helpful when considering legal options.
At Downs, McDonough, Cowan & Foley, our Durango, Colorado car accident attorneys represent car accident victims who have suffered life-altering injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured, we are here to help. Our legal team serves not only Durango, Colorado, but also Cortez, Pagosa Springs, Telluride, and The Four Corners. Contact us today for your free consultation.
Avoiding Common Mistakes: What You Should Know as a Car Accident Victim
The following mistakes can be detrimental to the success of your legal claim. Avoiding these mistakes can place you in a better position to obtain the compensation you deserve.
Mistake No. 1 – Failing to Seek Medical Treatment
If you are filing a lawsuit alleging you have suffered car accident injuries, you must be able to prove you have been injured and that your injuries are the direct result of the car accident. If another driver was negligent in causing the accident, the only way you can seek recovery is if you provide documentation of your injuries and the treatment you received.
Mistake No. 2 – Waiting Too Long to Speak with a Car Accident Attorney
Under Colorado Statute Section 13-80-102, you have two years from the date you suffered injuries (which would be the date of the car accident) to file a personal injury lawsuit. If you wait too long to seek the advice of a car accident attorney, it may be too late to file a car accident claim.
Mistake No. 3 – Agreeing to the First Settlement Offer From Car Insurance Companies
Car insurance is critical to compensating injured victims. However, car insurance companies are in the business of making money, which means offering less compensation than your claim may be worth. Consider speaking with an attorney before communicating with insurance companies.
Mistake No. 4 – Admitting Guilt
After being injured in a car accident, the last thing you should do is admit you were at fault for anything. An assessment of fault should be conducted by an attorney who can evaluate all available evidence. Even if you believe you were at fault following an accident, the other driver or drivers involved may have been at fault as well. Admitting guilt can prevent you from obtaining the compensation you deserve.
Mistake No. 5 – Failing to Call 911 After an Accident
Without an accident report, there is no full record that an accident happened. A police report documents the accident scene and notes whether any person involved in the accident sustained injuries. If you fail to contact the police, you will have difficulty pursuing a car accident claim in court.
Mistake No. 6 – Giving a Record Statement to Insurance Companies
Insurance companies notoriously record injured individuals filing car accident claims. If you are filing a car accident claim and speaking with an adjuster, you may unknowingly consent to have the call recorded. Any statements you make can be used against you later, harming your potential personal injury case. The bottom line is that acting alone to file a claim and seek compensation for car accident injuries opens the door to countless mistakes that can hinder your goals. After receiving medical treatment for your injuries, the next step you should consider is contacting an attorney.
Car Accident and Personal Injury Attorney in Durango, Colorado
Don’t suffer because of another person’s negligent conduct. Fight for your rights if you have been injured in a car accident. You deserve a free and impartial evaluation of your situation. At Downs, McDonough, Cowan & Foley, we understand how severe injuries can have a devastating impact on all aspects of your life. Our car accident attorneys in Durango, Colorado are ready to provide you with honest advice and discuss your potential legal options. We also serve the areas of Cortez, Pagosa Springs, Telluride, and The Four Corners. Contact us today for your free case assessment.