Car accident victims can seek compensation for their injuries from negligent drivers. In many cases, you can or your car accident lawyer can file a claim almost immediately after your accident.
However, there are deadlines and other important timing considerations you must be aware of in order to safeguard your claim. An experienced Southern Illinois car accident attorney can guide and help you to get the compensation you deserve for your damages.
Seeking Compensation and Time Considerations
Generally speaking, you can seek compensation for car accident injuries in three ways.
- File a claim with your insurance company
- File a claim with the other driver’s insurance company
- File a lawsuit
Lawsuits in car accident cases are not the norm, but they do occur. A car accident victim will typically file a car accident lawsuit when the insurance company denies their claim or fails to pay an adequate amount.
Most cases get settled without the need for a lawsuit. In each of these cases, you must know the important timing factors involved.
Insurance company policies, for example, have reporting deadlines requiring you to notify them of your accident within a certain period. This reporting requirement is not the same thing as filing a claim it’s simply notifying the insurance company about your accident.
As far as filing a claim with an insurance company, the timing requirements will vary from case to case. Different policies establish their own deadlines, making it important for injury victims to avoid delays when seeking compensation and set their claims in motion as soon as possible.
Statute of Limitations
All personal injury cases come with a deadline known as the statute of limitations. This regulation gives injury victims two years from the time of the original accident to file a lawsuit, after which the case becomes invalid.
There are exceptions, however. If you’ve been in a car accident and more than two years have passed, your case may still qualify. A knowledgeable attorney for car accident can help determine your case’s validity during a free consultation.
Car accidents sometimes cause injuries that aren’t readily observable or apparent. In these cases, weeks, months, or even years might pass before the consequences of an injury manifest themselves.
When these cases occur, injury victims may still seek justice. However, failing to seek immediate medical treatment after an accident might make recovering compensation difficult down the line. As such, both medical and legal professionals suggest seeking medical attention for anyone involved in an injury car crash, no matter how minor.
Before Filing Your Claim or Lawsuit
Time is of the essence when you file a compensation claim. However, rushing into things can be detrimental to your final settlement.
Always remember that any insurance company you deal with wants to pay as little as possible to resolve your claim. In fact, they employ industry-standard tactics to persuade injury victims to take less than they deserve. That’s because their real commitment is to their bottom lines, not to your well-being.
Contact an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer for Assistance with Your Claim
A claimant who has an experienced car accident lawyer negotiating on their behalf will net higher compensation than one who doesn’t. Car accident lawyers typically offer injury victims free consultations to help them understand their options for compensation.
If you have a car accident lawyer representing you, you get the peace of mind that your claim is being handled correctly and in a manner that minimizes your chances of getting an inadequate payout. Without a lawyer, you’ll likely be leaving a significant sum on the table.
For instance, most accident victims know they’re likely entitled to compensation from negligent drivers, but they may not be aware of the various forms of compensation available to car accident victims. Costs for medical treatment and care are obviously compensable, but so are wages or income lost due to time away from work.
That’s not all in addition to financial damages, car accident victims may also demand compensation for various psychological and emotional damages, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Diminished quality of life
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of society
When negotiating with an insurance company, a seasoned car accident attorney will fight to correctly calculate every applicable damage. In some cases, this can be a time-consuming process, as attorneys and adjusters often go back and forth over compensation figures for each category of damages.
Insurance companies usually offer quick and easy settlements and tempt injury victims with fast payments. They know that car accidents lead to immediate pain and suffering and that victims need financial resources to cope. However, their offers are almost always far below what victims deserve and what they can get with a skilled car accident attorney.
Because of this practice, it’s unwise to accept an offer from an insurance company until you’ve had time to schedule a case evaluation with a qualified car accident attorney.
If you or someone you love has been in a car accident and has been left with devastating injuries as a result, a Southern Illinois Personal Injury attorney can potentially help you get a significant compensation payout. It’s essential to Act quickly to protect your claim and increase your chances of getting the maximum compensation available for your case.