There are many myths surrounding car accident injury claims that you should be aware of. Many deal with the amount of settlement or compensation you can expect to receive. Please be weary of anyone that tells you how much your case is worth and what is definitely going to happen in your case – especially if they tell you these things when you first meet with them. Additionally it is important to realize that every case is different so what happened in your cousin’s case may not be relevant to your case at all. EVERY CASE IS DIFFERENT!
Here are a few myths surrounding personal injury claims.
1. All States Have the Same Injury Laws
It’s never safe to assume that the way a personal injury case turned out for your friend or family member in another state is how it will turn out for you. Laws related to injury cases vary from state to state. For example, some states have no-fault legislation while others operate on a fault basis. Before making an assumptions about your case, consider speaking to an attorney familiar with the personal injury laws in your state.
2. Pain and Suffering
This term has been used in commercials, TV shows and in movies to the point where it is a commonly uttered phrase. Unfortunately most people do not understand what it really means. If some person or company caused you to be injured, you can make a claim for pain and suffering damages. The purpose of these damages is to provide compensation for physical discomfort endured due to injuries resulting from an accident. There is no one formula or single way to calculate the exact compensation that someone may be entitled to in their personal injury or accident case. There are many factors that your attorney will analyze to make their determination. This is not something that should be guessed or assumed. Please speak to an experienced personal injury attorney to determine what you may be entitled to.
3. Large Settlements and Verdicts
You may have heard about large settlements reported in the news or in your local newspaper. Often times the media will focus more on the amount of the settlement or verdict than the substance of the case that lead to such a result. Large settlements and verdicts are typically going to be associated with cases relating to very severe and serious injury cases. Examples of those cases may include wrongful death, paralysis or many other injuries. A large settlement or jury verdict should not be viewed as a commonplace windfall. Many times these large settlements and verdicts are awarded in situations where people have been catastrophically injured or in a situation where a large amount of money may be necessary to compensate someone with extremely large medical bills or a necessity for future care that could last for decades.
4. The Waiting Game as a Negotiation Strategy
There is a common misconception that we often hear about insurance companies offering favorable settlements to people that just a sit and wait for them. Anything is possible and there is probably someone out there that received a settlement purely because of good timing. However this is not a reasonable or sound negotiation strategy because you risk recovering nothing if you wait too long. An insurance company can play the waiting game too and they don’t mind if you wait, or wait so long that your time has run out. There are strict time periods that govern someone’s ability to file a personal injury action. It is a good idea to speak to an experienced car accident or personal injury lawyer so you can best understand the time periods that govern your case. Hiring a personal injury attorney experienced in negotiation is one consideration to make. They are experienced at working with the insurance companies and they know how to navigate settlement negotiations.
Often times we hear from people that failed to research their attorney prior to hiring them. In some cases they may call for a 2nd opinion or to discuss the possibility of hiring another firm for one reason or another. In North Carolina there is no such thing as an attorney that specializes in personal injury. There are some practice areas where a lawyer with certain credentials may ethically refer to themselves as specialists. Board Certified Specialists in Workers Compensation is such an example. Just because you cannot call yourself a personal injury specialist in NC doesn’t mean that you cannot limit your practice areas to personal injury or car accidents. Consider doing some research on the attorney or firm that you are considering hiring. What kind of cases do they handle? Do they only handle matters related to injury cases? Do they do criminal law, family law and personal injury all at the same time? There are plenty of great lawyers that handle different types of caseloads in different practice areas. We recommend that a potential consumer of professional legal services inquire about the qualifications of the attorney or firm that they are considering hiring before they actually hire them.
Reach out to our office today if you have been involved in an auto accident in Charlotte. We have over 26 years of experience defending victims and protecting their rights. We are happy to offer you a no-cost case evaluation and discuss your incident further. Call today to schedule your appointment.