Florida law entitles victims in Tampa car accident cases to recover financial compensation from the at-fault party. But before you file a claim, you should understand how to maximize your compensation. Insurance companies rarely offer accident victims what they deserve for their injuries and losses. You must know your rights, understand the law, and take the right actions to ensure you get paid the money you deserve. Here’s how you can maximize your compensation after a car accident in Tampa, Florida, and beyond.
Get Medical Assistance Right Away
Many people get into car accidents in the Tampa area and overlook the importance of medical treatment. This is an unwise decision. First, health is the primary concern. Consider that if something happens to you, all the other tasks you consider most important immediately fall away because you won’t be able to do them.
Insurance Company Require Medical Proof
Second, obtaining compensation from the liable insurance company will only be possible with medical treatment. Insurance companies want to see proof that your injuries are real and that they occurred in the car accident you’re claiming. If you wait to get care, the insurer may have room to suggest that you weren’t seriously hurt or that your injuries did not come from the car crash.
Seeking medical treatment ensures professional documentation of your injuries. Medical treatment also results in medical bills that prove you suffered financially from the car accident. Moreover, it provides clear information about the nature and extent of your physical harm.
You Can’t Claim Certain Damages Without Medical Documentation
It also provides a timeline for your expected recovery and details about what further treatment you may need. This is particularly important when seeking damages to cover future medical expenses. Finally, if you want to collect damages for pain and suffering, Florida statute requires that car accident victims meet the serious injury threshold. You may need medical evidence to prove you satisfy the criteria.
Collect As Much Evidence From The Tampa Car Accident As Possible
In addition to medical treatment, you’ll need evidence of the car accident and who is at fault to maximize your compensation. Florida financial responsibility laws require you to file a claim with your PIP insurance before you can go after the other party for damages. Fault is not a factor in your claim, but if you have additional losses that are not covered under your PIP, you’ll need to file a third-party claim against the other driver to collect compensation.
Third-party liability insurance claims necessitate that you prove the other party caused the car accident. That means you’ll need as much proof as possible. The crash report is a good place to start, as it usually contains information about who caused the crash. Potential evidence that can show liability includes:
- Cell phone video from the crash
- Traffic cameras
- Surveillance video from nearby locations
- Dash cam footage
- Witness statements
- Crash report from police
- Photos of the wreck and damage to your vehicle
You should also take photos of your injuries. Try to speak with witnesses at the scene to get a statement from them about what they saw and who they believe caused the accident. Additionally, ask if they are willing to give a statement to the police and provide contact information to you for future reference.
Keep Track Of Your Expenses
Any financial costs that result from the car accident must be tracked. Save your bills, receipts, and bank statements if you must spend money because of your injuries or the crash.
If you paid for car repairs or to get your car out of the impound, you’ll want to consider anything you’ve spent money on since the crash and determine whether you would have incurred these expenses if the car accident hadn’t happened. You can recover compensation for all your accident-related economic losses.
Do Not Give A Recorded Statement To The Insurance Company
The other driver’s insurance company may contact you after the accident. Do not give a recorded statement. This is strictly a tool to use against you during litigation. You are not legally required to provide a recorded statement to a third-party insurer. Do not answer questions about your health, injuries, or how the accident occurred, whether in a recorded statement or otherwise.
Do not admit fault or guilt in any fashion. The insurance adjuster is trained to elicit responses from you that can hurt your chances of recovering compensation. They may twist your words to pin the blame for the accident on you or allege that you have pre-existing injuries that they are not liable for based on the information you provide.
After preparing for it with a Tampa car accident lawyer, you should only provide a recorded statement. Your attorney may even arrange for you to provide a written statement instead. Better still, your attorney can communicate with the insurance company so that you don’t have to step into any uncomfortable or uncertain situation alone. You may be required to give a recorded statement to your insurance company, but your lawyer can also help with that.
Don’t Accept The First Monetary Settlement Offer After a Car Accident
An insurance company’s initial settlement offer is rarely enough to cover car accident victims’ damages. Insurers will make you a low offer, hoping you will take it, not knowing your case’s worth. The adjuster’s goal is to keep money in their shareholders’ pockets. So, when they make you an offer, it’s a good bet that it is nothing near what you deserve for your injuries and losses.
Even if you’ve shown proof of your losses, an insurance company may offer you less. Do not sign any papers. Hold out for what you deserve. The insurance company must pay you what your claim is worth if you fight for it. This brings us to perhaps one of the most important ways you can maximize your compensation in a Tampa car accident case.
Hire a Tampa Car Accident Attorney to Help – Call Us Today
A Tampa car accident lawyer can work to maximize your compensation. Personal injury lawyers can access resources and have the legal knowledge and negotiating skills to request and fight for the money you deserve. They will handle the claims process for you.
From ensuring you receive proper medical treatment to investigating the accident to communicating with the insurance company on your behalf, your attorney can work toward maximizing your compensation in a Tampa car accident case. If you got hurt in a car crash, call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine for a free consultation with a car accident attorney today. Let us focus on your case while you focus on your recovery.
We Can Help.