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Common Mistakes Personal Injury Clients Make

 

As straightforward as putting in a personal injury claim might seem, there are many potential pitfalls a claimant can make throughout the process – pitfalls that could get between you and the compensation you are owed. Here, we aim to cover the most common mistakes made by clients in the pursuit of their dues, and what you can do to improve your chances of success.

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Asking the Wrong Questions

Personal injury clients might be rightly pre-occupied with receiving their fair and just compensation, but they often ask the wrong questions in pursuit of it. You should be asking questions throughout the entire process. In choosing a solicitor, ask questions such as “have you ever taken on a case like mine before?”; “how many other clients are you currently representing?”; and “will I be updated regularly on the progress of my claim?”. During the claim process, do not be afraid to ask questions about any aspect of the case – these questions will put you at ease, and may in some cases lead to a new angle.

Failing to Record Evidence

The onus is on the claimant to provide evidence that their personal injury was caused by the defendant. To this end, it is crucial that clients record as much evidence as possible. Photos and videos of the scene of your accident are incredibly helpful. So too are witness accounts – speaking to witnesses straight away, and ensuring correct contact information in the process, can only help your case. Be sure to write everything you notice and remember down – simple questions about the weather that day, if answered incorrectly, could scupper your claim.

Going Public

An easy mistake to make for many clients, discussing your personal injury claim on social media or other public forums can detrimentally affect your case. Accounts of an accident shared with friends online can often be charged or inconsistent, and, if discovered by defendant lawyers or insurance companies, could lead to issues in court. Defendant lawyers may also be on the look-out for evidence that your injuries are less severe than suggested in documentation – and recent photographs posted on Facebook of Instagram could well be used to that effect in court.

Settling Too Early

In the event that a defendant has conceded liability for your injury, they might offer an out-of-court settlement in hopes of an easy resolution. This might be a tempting offer to consider, but too many clients make the simple mistake of accepting the first offer that comes their way. The problems with this are twofold: firstly, settling out of court is more of a process than an offer. Solicitors can counter-offer, and negotiations can result in a figure both parties are happy with. Secondly, it might benefit you to carry on to a court case – especially if your injuries are ongoing, or recovery has been suggested to last longer than six months after examination. This is because you may experience complications to your injury – complications which could impact the amount you receive in compensation.

 

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