Unfortunately, some victims of Orange County car accidents complicate the insurance claims process before they even realize that they are injured. In the confusion after a serious wreck, it’s easy to say things you don’t mean or do things that could seriously jeopardize your California personal injury claim. If you’ve just been injured in an accident and have not yet spoken with an Orange County accident claim attorney, here are a few ways you can protect your rights at the scene of the accident:
- Don’t skip medical treatment and police involvement. Although you may be shaken and tempted to avoid all the red tape, it is crucial that you report the accident to the police and seek medical attention just in case.
- Don’t admit fault. After an accident, it’s hard to know exactly what happened. Even if you think you may have been partially responsible for the accident, don’t admit fault until you’ve had time to calm down and the accident has been investigated.
- Don’t speak with the other party’s insurance company. It’s too easy to get caught in a loophole when speaking with the other driver’s insurance company. To protect your rights, speak with an experienced attorney first.
- Don’t talk about the accident to anyone. While you’ll need to give a statement to the police and notify your own insurance company, you should avoid talking about the accident to witnesses, to friends, on social media sites, and to the other driver’s insurance company. Anything you say could later be used against you during the insurance claims process.
- Don’t negotiate directly with the driver. It should go without saying, but do not accept cash from the other driver, verbally agree to accept alternative compensation, or sign any offers. There is no way to know what your long-term costs will be until your damages and injuries have been evaluated.
- Don’t sign anything or verbally accept any offers. Whether it’s offered by the other driver, his or her insurance company, or your own insurance company, avoid signing or accepting anything until you’ve had time to seek medical attention and legal guidance.
If you need help in the aftermath of an Orange County wreck, please speak with an experienced Orange County accident claim attorney with Russell & Lazarus at 1-(949) 851-0222 as soon as possible. Our team of personal injury lawyers would be happy to provide a completely free, no-obligation initial consultation and provide answers to your questions, including whether or not you will need an attorney to get the most out of your personal injury claim. If you’ve been injured and have questions, reach out to us today!