When you are involved in an accident you might not always be thinking straight. Probably the last thing on your mind is what to do to ensure you are able to make a worthwhile personal injury claims, but it is important to remember you could reduce the value of your claim or jeopardise the chances of success if you do, or fail to do, certain things. Bear in mind that the defence will be looking for ways to reduce the amount they have to pay, or may be trying to wriggle out of liability entirely, so avoid making mistakes that could be costly later on.
The things to avoid if you are making a personal injury claim
1. Fail to seek medical attention
You need to see a doctor as soon as possible and get treatment for your injuries. Delaying treatment or seeking medical advice will only go against you when you make your personal injury claim.
2. Fail to report the accident to the police
Getting a police report of the accident is one of the best ways to secure an independent witness to the incident. Even if you think it is a minor accident, call the police and let them decide whether to attend or not, that way you will at least have a crime reference number that verifies the time, date and location of the accident.
3. Fail to record important pieces of information
As a bare minimum you need to record the names and contact details of anyone involved in the accident, as well as any witnesses. If you can you should take photographs and written records of everything that happened, as it will all be useful for your personal injury claim.
4. Admit any liability or claim that you are ‘fine’ following the accident
Try to keep idle chat to a minimum generally and make it clear that you are hurt and will be seeking medical attention for your injuries. If you were in a car accident, do not move the vehicle until the police get there and never tell the other driver that it was your fault.
5. Fail to seek legal advice for your personal injury claim in good time
Getting a good solicitor on board through a company like the Accident Advice Helpline is critical to ensuring your case for a personal injury claim is watertight.
6. Exaggerate or misrepresent at any stage of the process
If your injuries are severe, then by all means record the pain you are in and how it is affecting your personal life. However, if your injuries heal earlier than expected or are not as severe as first thought, making them seem worse than they are is against the law and could result in a serious punishment.
7. Fail to keep records of expenses
If you are spending money on taxis, help around the house or prescriptions, all this can be claimed back as part of your personal injury claim. However, in order to do this you need to prove what you have spent and when, so all receipts and bills need to be kept safe from the moment you have your accident.