After an accident, your immediate focus is understandably on your physical recovery. However, as time passes and you either begin to heal or adjust to your limitations, the financial impact of the accident sets in. Injury victims commonly spend days or weeks in the hospital followed by months of ongoing medical care including doctors’ visits, surgeries, and physical therapy. During this time, you might be unable to work as much as you did before the accident or may not be able to work at all. Thus, it is imperative that you take every step possible to maximize the compensation you receive in your personal injury case.
At the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC, we help injury victims pursue the compensation they need and deserve after a serious accident. Our detailed approach, thorough knowledge of the law, and keen negotiation skills have earned us a position of respect among the Kentucky legal community.
Eight Steps to Maximizing Your Recovery
While every case is unique, there are certain steps to take that will put you in an advantageous position. The following steps apply both to pre-trial settlement negotiations with the insurance company and jury trials.
Report the Accident
Regardless of the type of accident you were in, it is imperative that you file a report. In the case of Kentucky car accidents, you report an accident by calling 911 or the local police station. For slip and falls, you can report your fall to the business or property owner. For injuries related to negligent medical care, you can report the incident to the facility or the state licensing board. Reporting an accident promptly is very important, as it shows that you took the situation seriously from the very start.
Go to the Doctor
An accident can seriously disrupt your life. And it is common to brush off seemingly minor injuries to avoid the hassle of going to the doctor. However, some serious injuries may not be readily apparent to you after an accident. Not only that, but the longer you wait to go see a doctor, the more skeptical the insurance company will be of your claim.
After an accident, you typically have one year to file a claim. However, if you were injured in a car accident the statute of limitations gives you two years. If you wait until after the statute of limitations expires, the court will dismiss your claim. This will leave you no way to recover any compensation for your injuries. Additionally, you gain nothing by waiting to begin the recovery process, and doing so may even make it harder to win your case. For example, evidence is most easily obtained right after an accident. The longer you wait, the harder it is to locate physical evidence, find witnesses, and gather necessary documentation.
View Initial Settlement Offers with Skepticism
Shortly after an accident, an insurance company may reach out to you offering to settle the case. While this may seem like a good thing, these initial settlement offers are typically a ploy by the insurance company to catch injury victims off-guard. The insurance company wants to catch you in a moment of desperation so that you will sign away your right to pursue the case further. Thus, it is imperative to meet with a Kentucky injury lawyer before accepting any settlement offer.
Determine Your Damages
When most people think about damages in a personal injury case, property damage and medical bills quickly come to mind. However, there are many other types of damages you should be aware of. For example, if you missed work because of the accident, you should seek lost wages. Or, if your injuries leave you unable to resume your old job, you can seek compensation for your decreased earning capacity. You can also recover damages for your non-economic losses, such as pain and suffering.
Explain Why You Reject an Offer
Often, an insurance company will convey an offer that you are not interested in accepting. When this happens, don’t just reject the offer without giving an explanation. Be sure to tell the insurance company what the offer isn’t compensating you for and why that expense should be included in the offer. Providing documentation and a reason for your denial will strengthen your case. It also shows the insurance company that you take your case seriously.
Be Careful What You Post
Social media makes it easy to share every aspect of our lives with hundreds of people at a time. However, accident victims should be especially careful what they post on social media. For example, if you were injured in an accident and are seeking compensation for knee injuries, it would not be a good idea to post a picture from your annual water skiing trip to Lake Barkley.
Reach Out to an Experienced Injury Lawyer
If maximizing the amount of compensation you recover in a personal injury case is important to you, consider working with a Kentucky injury attorney. While there is no law requiring you to obtain an attorney, doing so ensures your case gets the attention it deserves. Working with a knowledgeable lawyer will also make the healing process easier for you. It leaves the legal details to the professionals so you can focus on recovering from your injuries.
Contact the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC to Schedule a Free Consultation
If you’ve been injured in a Kentucky personal injury accident, reach out to the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC. We have over 20 years of experience practicing personal injury law. Our founding attorney, Seth Gladstein, used to represent insurance companies. This experience gave him valuable insight that he now uses to help accident victims recover full and fair compensation for their injuries. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, reach out to the Gladstein Law Firm, PLLC by phone or through the firm’s online contact form. We accept all personal injury cases on a contingency basis. This means you are not responsible for any legal fees unless we can help you recover compensation for your injuries.