Financial compensation can’t take away the pain, stress, and upset of a serious car accident caused by someone else’s negligence. It can make it easier to receive the medical care you need and ease the stress of being forced to take time away from work because of your injuries. Our experienced Southern California personal injury lawyers can help you maximize your compensation for a car injury claim.
How Do Damages Work in a Personal Injury Claim?
Compensatory damages are designed to compensate injury victims for the losses they have suffered in an accident that was someone else’s fault. In most cases, victims are entitled to claim two types of compensatory damages:
- Economic damages: Injury victims can seek reimbursement for financial losses, including past and future medical expenses, lost wages or earnings, loss of future earning potential, and property damages. Economic damages are more easily quantified in terms of dollars and cents.
- Noneconomic damages: These losses don’t come with a set price tag. They are the intangible losses that may include things like physical pain and suffering, emotional trauma, mental anguish, scarring and disfigurement, physical impairment, and loss of quality of life.
In some cases, victims may pursue punitive damages for auto accidents. These damages may be awarded in cases of extreme recklessness or intentional harm. They are designed to punish the defendant and deter similar actions in the future, rather than to compensate the victim.
How Can You Maximize the Value of Your Car Accident Claim?
The following tips can help you maximize the compensation you recover after a serious accident caused by another driver:
Collect and Preserve Evidence
If you are able, gather all evidence you can at the accident scene. Exchange information with the other drivers involved. Get names and contact information of any eyewitnesses. Take pictures of everything – the damage to the vehicles, their relative positions, skid marks or crash debris on the road, street signs, traffic signals and signs, and any visible injuries you suffered.
Report the Accident to the Police
Call 911 to get emergency medical attention for anyone who needs it and to report the incident to the police. When officers arrive to investigate, answer their questions honestly. Get a copy of the police report when it becomes available. This report can be important evidence in your claim.
Keep Records of All Your Medical Treatments and Expenses
See a doctor as soon as possible after the accident. A thorough exam performed by a qualified medical professional can help detect injuries that may not otherwise be apparent right away. It also establishes a record of your injuries for your claim. Document all referrals, diagnostics, and treatments related to your accident injuries, and keep records of all medical expenses.
Stay Off Social Media
The other side will be searching social media for any evidence that could discredit your claim or minimize the extent and severity of your injuries. If someone posts a picture of you smiling and enjoying yourself with friends, defense attorneys could use it to discredit your claim for pain and suffering damages. It is best to put private settings on your accounts, stay off social media yourself, and ask friends and family not to post photos of you on social media until your case is resolved.
Don’t accept any insurance company offers before speaking with an experienced lawyer who specializes in personal injury law. The insurance company may make a low ball offer in an attempt to settle your case quickly. Our Santa Barbara personal injury lawyers at NordstrandBlack PC can assess the full extent of your losses and advise you on what your claim is worth. We have the knowledge, skills, and resources to likely increase the value of your case and effectively pursue maximum compensation for your injuries. Call us today at (805) 962-2022.