South Carolina’s fault-based system gives car accident victims the right to hold drunk, distracted, and otherwise reckless motorists liable for the injuries they sustain. Just because you were hurt in a crash, however, doesn’t mean you’re automatically entitled to compensation.
In order to secure a payout that will cover all the losses you incur, you must first put together a strong car accident claim. You must also avoid making critical mistakes along the way. Some missteps, after all, can jeopardize even the strongest claims.
Let’s take a look at some of the most common mistakes to avoid following a car accident if you intend to take action against the responsible parties:
1. Failing to Mitigate Damages
Personal injury claimants have an obligation to mitigate damages. Otherwise, they could be deemed partially liable for their losses.
If the opposing party can prove that you contributed to the damages, it will reduce the total compensation to which you are entitled. Under South Carolina’s modified comparative fault rule, plaintiffs who are deemed more liable than the defendants are barred from recovering anything at all.
Thankfully, mitigating damages doesn’t usually pose a challenge. You simply need to seek prompt medical care, follow your doctor’s orders, and take your rehabilitation seriously.
2. Giving a Recorded Statement
If the insurer asks for a statement regarding the accident or your resulting injuries, you should refuse to give one until you have consulted with a competent trial attorney. Speaking on the circumstances surrounding the wreck could lead to disputes. For example, if you describe the apparent limited severity of your injuries but your condition takes an unexpected turn for the worse, the insurer might challenge the severity of your condition and the associated limitations on your ability to earn an income, as well as the degree of pain and suffering you experience.
3. Remaining Active on Social Media
Following the accident, you may be inclined to turn to your friends and loved ones on social media for support. Until your case has been resolved, though, it’s best to stay offline. Insurers are not above monitoring a claimant’s online presence for evidence that allows them to deny or at least devalue the case in question.
Since even seemingly innocuous posts—like an outing to the park with your family—could lead the insurer to question your credibility, it’s wise to disable your accounts for as long as your case is pending. If doing so is not an option, you can reduce the risk of jeopardizing your claim inadvertently by:
- Not posting about the accident, your injuries, your social life, or your expenditures; and
- Not “checking in” to public places.
Call 864-585-3873 to Discuss Your Case with a Car Accident Lawyer
At Hodge & Langley Law Firm, we understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll that unanticipated injuries can take on the whole family. If you were hurt in a wreck through no fault of your own, we’ll help you pursue the maximum payout possible from all responsible parties. Call 864-585-3873 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free consultation with a car accident attorney.