Five Mistakes You Must Not Make After Your North Carolina Traffic Accident

If you were involved in a North Carolina highway crash caused by a negligent driver, you have the legal right to seek recovery for your losses. At our Wilmington traffic accident law firm, our attorneys can prepare a lawsuit to demand compensation for your medical bills, lost income, future physical or occupational therapy, and pain and suffering. We can negotiate a settlement with the insurance company claims adjuster or take the case to trial to win you the verdict you deserve.

We make it sound easy. It’s not. There are pitfalls all along the way. And the greatest pitfall—the single threat that can do the most damage to your case—is you, our client.

Ultimately, you are the person responsible for how your lawsuit is conducted. We can make recommendations on what we think is the best course of action—but we can’t actually do anything without your approval. When you hire us as your legal representatives, you remain in control of the situation. You’re the boss.

It’s our duty to warn you ahead of time of five critical errors you may make that can damage your legal case. If you want a fair recovery for your injuries, avoid making these mistakes.

1. Refusing Medical Care

Some people want to “tough it out” after a truck or motorcycle collision in North Carolina. They won’t visit the emergency room, refuse to visit their family doctors, skip medical appointments, or don’t follow prescribed treatments. Bad move. If you don’t show your commitment to taking proper care of your injuries, the insurance company lawyers will argue that you weren’t badly hurt in the first place—or that you’re just looking for a handout.

2. Not Documenting the Accident

Where did the vehicles come to rest after the car collision on I-40? What were the names of the witnesses at the accident scene? Are you positive the Yield sign wasn’t visible from the road? Your memory of the accident will fade over time, so it is critical that you write down notes about the incident as soon as possible. Capture pictures of the accident scene with a camera or your cell phone. Every detail you can record will be helpful for your lawyer’s investigation. 

3. Signing Away Your Rights

Insurance adjusters may promise they are looking out for you. They will ask you to sign a waiver so you can collect a settlement. Don’t do it. The adjusters will do whatever they can to save money for the insurance company. The settlement they offer early on may look attractive, but it will be a lowball estimate of what your injuries are really worth. The document they want you to sign will forfeit your rights to a lawsuit. Never sign anything from the insurance company without your lawyer seeing it first.

4. Talking Too Much

Saying you’re sorry is a natural human reaction to seeing someone suffer after an accident, but the insurance companies will interpret it as a confession that you were at least partially responsible for the traffic crash. A witness who hears you say, “I didn’t see him” at the scene may be called to testify in court that you admitted to causing the accident. Telling the insurance adjuster on the phone “I’m feeling okay” can be used to discredit your serious injuries. After the accident, talk to the police and to your health care provider; avoid any public comments to anyone else

5. Not Hiring a Lawyer

An experienced Wilmington personal injury attorney can be essential to investigating your North Carolina motor vehicle accident and holding the responsible party to answer for his negligence. Industry statistics suggest that accident victims who hire lawyers receive compensation that averages three to four times the amounts collected by people who represent themselves.

If you truly are committed to collecting all the compensation you deserve, call Speaks Law Firm today at 910-341-7570 or toll-free at 877-593-4233. There is no charge or obligation for your first consultation with our lawyers. At your request, when you call to schedule your appointment, we will send you a FREE copy of our book, The North Carolina Auto Injury Book, as our way of introducing our law firm.

R. Clarke Speaks
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Trial Lawyer and Founder of Speaks Law Firm, P.C.