ABOUT CAR ACCIDENT CLAIMS
After suffering personal injuries in a car accident, you may be left wondering how you will be able to pay all of your bills. With a mountain of medical expenses and lost wages from the inability to work, you may feel reliant on your auto insurance policy to provide much-needed assistance.
Despite popular belief, your auto insurance policy may not cover much of the medical treatment you need to heal from long-term injuries. Common misconceptions about how the insurance claims process works have left many car accident victims receiving much less than they deserve.
The Idaho personal injury attorneys of Shep Law Group regularly communicate with insurance companies and understand the tactics they use to confuse and misguide many car accident claimants. Serving Boise, Idaho, along with Meridian, Ada County, Canyon County, and the rest of Idaho, we are available to provide you with the legal guidance you need during a complicated and painful time. To receive a free case evaluation, contact Shep Law Group today.
Misconception No. 1: My Car Insurance Company Will Cover Medical Costs and Property Damage to My Vehicle
Under Idaho law, which is an at-fault state, there is no guarantee that your insurance company will cover the financial costs (medical bills and lost wages, for example) associated with a car accident that resulted in personal injuries and property damage. If another driver was to blame for causing the accident that led to your injuries, that driver’s insurance company may be on the hook for paying you compensation rather than your insurance company.
Misconception No. 2: I Feel Okay, So I Don’t Need to Seek Medical Assistance
Many car accident victims feel fine in the hours and days following an accident. Immediately after an accident happens, you may not feel the pain associated with your injuries. With adrenaline running through your system, you may not have registered that you have physical pain, which could signal an injury.
Reasons why you should consider seeking medical assistance immediately after being involved in a car accident include, but are not limited to, the following:
To ensure you receive a prompt evaluation that will identify any injuries, which may not be obvious;
To document your injuries, which will also be documentation that a car accident happened; and
To prevent an insurance company from having an argument that you aren’t that injured. If you delay medical treatment or don’t seek treatment at all, insurance companies can take the position that if you do not need medical treatment for your injuries, you do not need compensation.
No matter how serious you believe your injuries are, seeking medical attention is a good idea to rule out a multitude of injuries, some of which may be life-threatening (such as an internal bleed).
Misconception No. 3: If an Accident Is Minor, I Don’t Need to Report It
No accident is too minor to report. Whether you have been involved in a fender-bender or head-on collision, having an accident report written by a police officer is a crucial piece of any car accident claim or personal injury lawsuit. A record of the accident documents a police officer’s observations, which are objective.
Misconception No. 4: I Was Partially At Fault for the Accident, But That Won’t Affect My Ability to Recover Damages
Idaho is a “modified comparative negligence” state. You can only recover damages in a personal injury lawsuit if you were less than fifty percent at fault for causing the car accident. In other words, if you were assessed fifty or more percent of the fault by a jury, you would be barred from recovering any compensation.
If you are considered less than fifty percent at fault, your damages will be equal to the percentage of the other party’s fault. For example, if you were assessed 20% at fault for causing the accident that resulted in your injuries, you would recover 80% of the damages awarded by a jury.
Misconception No. 5: An Attorney Won’t Make a Difference When Filing a Personal Injury Claim
Many people believe they can obtain the compensation they need and deserve by filing an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit on their own without the assistance of an attorney. While you can certainly file a lawsuit without an attorney, you are taking on an expensive endeavor that may not yield the results you are hoping for.
By working alongside a car accident attorney, you are placing your legal rights in the hands of a legal professional who routinely handles similar cases. In personal injury matters, you do not pay for attorney fees unless your case is successful in court.
Attorneys have the resources to hire experts when necessary, cover court fees, and other costs (such as depositions or travel). With such resources, you are in a better position to obtain a fair settlement offer than you would obtain on your own. Additionally, you first want to ensure you have a valid legal claim before taking the time and energy to proceed through the court process alone.
Car Accident Attorneys Serving Boise, Idaho
If you or a loved one has suffered personal injuries in a car accident, you have limited time to determine whether you may be entitled to compensation. When your legal rights are at risk, it is wise to seek the advice of an experienced personal injury attorney. At Shep Law Group, we serve clients in Boise, Idaho, as well as Meridian, Ada County, Canyon County, and throughout the rest of the state. To receive a free case evaluation, contact our office today.