There are a number of possible claims after an car accident that your lawyer may help you peruse. The most common claims associated with automobile accidents include vehicle damage, PIP, uninsured motorist, medical expenses, serious injury or death, loss of income, pedestrian involvement, and defective or malfunctioning vehicles. It is important to contact an attorney immediately. If you do not seek a medical consult or treatment timely,you may waive your right to advance the case.
2. How do I know if I am eligible to receive compensation?
The right to compensation depends heavily on the facts surrounding your injury. Not all injury cases are the same and not all injury lawyers are the same. You need to contact an injury attorney immediately to take full advantage of the possible coverage for your case. If you fail to seek treatment you may waive your right to recovery. Actual calculation of your recovery from your injury will depend on the coverage available, the damages your suffer and the party at fault for the accident. It is best to consult with an accident attorney early to get a complete overview of your possible recovery. An auto accident attorney can determine the cause of the accident and help you seek medical treatment and handle negotiation with the insurance company. If there is any delay in diagnosis, treatment, or filing of the claim, you may become ineligible to receive compensation. Call a Pinellas Auto Accident Lawyer today to help you with your claim.
3. How do I prove what damage was caused by the accident?
Your Tampa Accident Attorney will always say the best way to prove that damage was from an accident is to seek legal advice and medical treatment immediately after the accident. Typically, the burden is on the insurance company to show that an injury was pre-existing, but even a pre-existing injury can be exacerbated by a accident. The insurance company and the party at fault must take responsibility for their side of the case and should pay compensation for the injury that they cause or the injury that they made worse.
Your insurance company should act diligently to settle your case. In fact they should settle the matter within 30 days. This deadline may be extended if you need continuing treatment, additional investigation, factual dispute resolution or other mitigating factors. One problem often faced in accident cases is that the insurance company wants to present a low offer to settle; In doing so they may appear to have met their burden to present a settlement. If their offer is not made in good faith and for a proper value, you may have aright to move forward with a civil action or declaratiory judgment against them. These legal procedures help your Tampa Injury Attorney to move the case forward and to keep the insurance company honest. Note that in choosing an Injury attorney you should check the litigation history of the attorney. There are a number of local attorneys that just will not go to court. They send demand letters and settle, or refer the case to a different attorney. If the lawyer will not take your case all the way to court, it is likely that the insurance company knows that in negotiating how much to pay for your accident. Hire a true litigation attorney and not someone that will just send a letter.
The insurance company has the option to repair or replace your car, or reimburse you for the” actual cash value” (ACV) of your car. The “actual cash value”, or “fair market value” is the amount your vehicle would have sold for immediately before the accident. The insurance company may consider your car a” total loss” if the repair costs equals or exceeds the vehicle’s ACV on the date of the loss. In many instances an insurance company will total a vehicle if the appraised damages equal 80% of the vehicle’s ACV because often, once repairs have begun, additional damages or “hidden damages” are found which would render the vehicle a total loss by definition.
6. Can I choose my own repair shop?
You can choose your own repair shop provided they are licensed. The insurance company may have your damages estimated by their own repair shop to ensure the accuracy of the estimate by your repair shop. The insurance company will then work with the repair shop of your choice, to get your car repaired.
7. Does my insurance company have to use new parts to repair my car?
It is not always possible to replace damaged parts with new parts. The insurance company is required to restore your car to the same condition it was before the accident. Depending on the availability of new parts, the mechanic may have to use reconditioned parts, or after-market parts.