Three Major Pitfalls in An Auto Accident Case

There are three major areas of concern that we have seen in the last 20 years in our personal injury practice. The first area of concern is called subrogation or a health or auto insurance company’s right to recoup medical bills on behalf of their insured in an auto accident case. Even though my clients have health insurance and auto insurance to cover medical bills related to their treatment in an auto accident case, their health insurance, and auto insurance company have the right in an auto case to collect the bills that they have paid on behalf of our client. This is called a subrogation claim.

The second major area of concern is that our client’s are not getting enough insurance coverage to cover them in the event they are hit by an uninsured or underinsured motorist. We recommend that our clients have at least one-hundred thousand dollars in uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.

The third major area of concern is that our client’s are not protecting themselves by not getting the medical care and treatment that they need and maintaining the documentation necessary to help their auto accident claim.

Whenever you see the doctor, it is extremely important that you provide the doctor with a thorough history of all of your injuries from top to bottom and be thorough about all of your limitations and restrictions. Use descriptive words to describe what it feels like inside your body. For example, you can describe your neck pain as “an aching throbbing sensation” or your back pain as a “burning radiating pain”. Be as descriptive and detailed as possible. The narrative that you provide your doctor is critical when documenting all of your injuries and restrictions. The insurance company will not believe you, but they will believe your doctors. A large part of your insurance adjuster’s evaluation is based on how well your doctors document all of your injuries and limitations.

At the scene of the motor vehicle collision, it is important that you gather all of the necessary evidence. This includes the following:

1) the name of all of the drivers involved along with all of their insurance information;

2) obtain as many witness names and addresses as possible;

3) contact the police and file an accident report;

4) take pictures of all of the vehicles involved both exterior and interior;

5) obtain medical treatment as soon as possible;

6) take down as many notes about the accident as possible.

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