If you intend to bring a personal injury claim, your statements and actions throughout the proceedings can have a major impact on the outcome of your case. Putting off your medical evaluation, giving a recorded statement to the insurance company, and posting about the accident on social media are just a few mistakes you should avoid.
Below we’ve outlined some of the more common errors that can derail a personal injury claim:
1. Postponing Medical Care
You have a duty to take reasonable steps to minimize your healthcare costs and other losses. This is called “mitigating damages.” If your own negligence exacerbates your medical condition or prolongs your recovery, the insurance company might not pay for 100 percent of the damages. Postponing your medical care may constitute a failure to mitigate damages, so be sure to visit a doctor as soon as possible if you have not done so already.
2. Ignoring Doctor’s Orders
Following your doctor’s orders is another component of mitigating damages. Resting for a prolonged period of time and avoiding physical activity can be challenging, but disobeying your doctor could threaten your case.
3. Remaining Active on Social Media
You should limit your social media use for as long as your case is pending. Insurance adjusters frequently monitor the online activity of claimants to find posts that bring liability, the severity of injuries, or other elements of the case into question.
If deactivating your accounts temporarily is not an option, take these steps to avoid jeopardizing your case:
- Update your privacy settings so only approved friends and followers can view your posts;
- Screen all new connection requests carefully;
- Avoid posting about the accident, your injuries, or the direction that you intend to take the case; and
- Avoid posting about your social life and expenditures.
4. Accepting a Premature Settlement
The damages resulting from a serious accident can add up fast. You may be inclined to settle as quickly as possible, but if you haven’t yet reached maximum medical improvement, you should consider putting off the negotiations. Otherwise, the cost of medical bills and other damages might be underestimated, which could lead to financial problems down the road.
5. Giving Recorded Statements
If you are contacted by the insurance company, do not provide a statement. Rather, let your personal injury lawyer handle all correspondence with the insurer.
6. Overlooking Damages
In the state of Florida, personal injury claimants may be able to obtain compensation for the following damages:
- Past and future healthcare expenses,
- Property damage,
- Lost income and benefits,
- Other economic damages,
- Pain and suffering,
- Mental anguish,
- Emotional distress, and
- Loss of enjoyment in life.
Punitive damages may also be available if the defendant acted with intentional misconduct or gross negligence.
Discuss Your Case with a Personal Injury Lawyer in Tampa
At Capaz Law Firm, P.A., we can assess your case in a free consultation and help you determine the most strategic way to proceed. We are available 24/7 to take your call. Dial 813-440-2700 or send us a message to schedule a case assessment.