Car crashes are the most common causes of accidental injuries in the United States – and Louisiana is no exception. According to Louisiana State University, there were 491 driver fatalities and 48,200 injury crashes in 2015.
What these statistics do not show is the devastation that serious wrecks can cause to families. Some victims cannot return to work; others face debilitating injuries that ruin their quality of life.
If you were injured by a negligent motorist, contact Morris Bart, LLC. A Lake Charles accident lawyer can determine if you may have grounds for a claim.
What Are “Initial Discussions?”
One important aspect of the injury claims process is the initial discussions that claimants have with the at-fault driver, his or her lawyer, or an insurance adjuster. Here are three tips that can protect your interests during initial discussions:
- Be Polite
Many accident victims are angry and resentful toward the drivers who caused their injuries. Although this is certainly understandable, it is important that you remain calm and polite during initial discussions.
Show courtesy to the other driver and insurance adjuster. Insurance companies deal with frustrated people on a daily basis, and they will not give you preferential treatment or offer a higher settlement just because you are angry and aggressive.
You should be polite yet firm. If you have doubts about your ability to handle initial discussions, contact a car accident attorney.
- Provide Limited Personal Information
You do not need to provide comprehensive personal information to the insurance company during initial discussions. Many insurance adjusters will attempt to gather as much evidence about the claimant as possible including details on occupation and salary. This may influence the negotiations and initial settlement offer. The only personal information you need provide at this stage are your name, contact details and address.
- Do Not Offer Details about the Crash or Admit Fault
The insurance adjuster may attempt to extract details about the crash during initial discussions. He or she may ask questions about how the accident happened and who caused it. If you unknowingly admit fault, then it may compromise your ability to negotiate for a fair settlement.
You should only provide details on which cars the crash involved and where it happened. You will need to provide detailed information at a later stage when you make a written demand for damages. A car accident attorney can calculate your losses and help you pursue the maximum compensation.
If you were injured by a negligent driver, then you may be entitled to damages for lost wages and medical expenses. A Lake Charles car accident attorney from Morris Bart, LLC can guide you through the claims process.
We can handle correspondence with insurance companies and represent your interests during settlement negotiations. Call 800-537-8185 to schedule a consultation.