Protecting yourself after an accident that wasn’t your fault
When you drive the same roads to the same places long enough, the trips you make to and from work, or to run errands, become automatic. You have no reason to believe that the next trip will become drastically different from the last. After all, you traveled the same routes numerous times without incident.
Then, your world shattered when another vehicle slammed into yours. By the time you realized what was happening, your vehicle finally stopped moving. As your mind began to process what happened, you also became keenly aware of pain. You knew you suffered injuries, but weren’t yet sure just how badly until hours or days later. Now, you don’t know when you will be able to return to work and the medical bills grow by the day.
The insurance company
Make no mistake. Insurance companies are in the business of making money. Part of the way they do that is by taking in premiums and not paying out claims or paying out as little as possible. The insurance company will thoroughly investigate the accident. The investigation not only includes gathering facts about the crash itself, but also about your injury claims, including any claims you might have made in the past regarding injuries.
The insurance company has the ability to obtain records from past insurance claims. Any information regarding prior injuries may affect the settlement the company offers you. Investigators may attempt to prove that your injuries are not as serious as you claim, or that they were not the result of the accident. You will need to guard what you say during this time. You should assume the company records any conversations you have with its employees.
The insurance company will look for any reason to deny or limit your claim. More than likely, any settlement offered won’t provide you will all of the compensation you deserve. Fortunately, you do not have to accept.
The personal injury claim
The insurance company probably already asked you for documentation of your losses, including your medical expenses and damage estimates to your vehicle. You may want to obtain copies of all medical records associated with your injuries. No repairs to your vehicle should happen before obtaining photographs of the damage.
The more documentation you have indicating the injuries you suffered directly resulted from the accident, the stronger your case will be. If negotiations with the insurance company still do not reach a settlement with which you are satisfied, you may file a personal injury claim in a Florida civil court.