Ostroff Godshall Injury and Accident Lawyers has represented a lot of accident victims. Over the past 25 years, we’ve learned what makes a case successful and what mistakes can cost an injury claim. Most of these mistakes are unintentional. A client doesn’t realize that her words to the insurance adjuster would be taken the wrong way or that she should not have given the adjuster access to her medical records.
We understand. The aftermath of an accident can be very confusing. We are the experts and we will work with you to minimize any unintentional damage to your claim.
But, there are some mistakes that we may not be able to fix. These are serious mistakes that raise questions about your integrity and the validity of your case.
The Five Mistakes That Will Damage Your Pennsylvania Accident Claim
Mistake #1: You see a lawyer before you see a doctor.
We suggest that every Pennsylvania car accident victim see a doctor as soon as possible after the crash. The doctor can check you for hidden injuries and create a medical record of your car crash injuries. You should follow any instructions that the doctor provides.
If you wait to see a doctor until after you’ve seen an attorney, the insurance company and the judge and jury will become suspicious.
Mistake #2: You don’t tell your lawyer about your past accidents.
Tell your lawyer about any previous accidents – even if they were your fault. Your attorney will determine how those accidents affect your current case. This is important because the insurance agency has access to a database that will tell them about any prior accidents. If you misrepresent yourself to the insurance company, you will lose your claim.
Mistake #3: You don’t tell your doctor or your lawyer about your preexisting injuries.
Do you have pre-existing injuries or conditions that are contributing to your pain? Tell your lawyer and your doctor. The insurance company can access your medical records, so it is important that you let us know about prior medical conditions that affect your injury.
A prior injury won’t ruin your case. While, you can’t get compensation for a condition that existed before your accident, you may be able to get insurance compensation for the additional injury if an accident aggravates or worsens an existing condition. We’re happy to answer any questions.
Mistake #4: You exaggerate the impact of your injuries.
A serious injury can have a serious impact on your life. Be honest when you tell your attorney about how your injury affects your ability to work, take care of yourself, enjoy your hobbies and spend time with your family. Do not exaggerate. The insurance company is looking for evidence that you are not as seriously injured as you claim. They may even hire an investigator to seek evidence that your claim is false.
Mistake #5: You don’t file a tax return or you file a fraudulent tax return.
Nobody wants to file taxes. But, if you lost income because of a Pennsylvania car crash, filing an accurate tax return is important. You may be able to claim damages your lost income, but you will tax returns as documentation. If you know of any problems with your tax returns, let your attorney know as soon as possible.
To avoid these common accident claim mistakes honesty is the best policy. Always tell the truth to your lawyer, your doctor and your insurance adjuster. If you are honest with us, we’ll do everything we can to get you the compensation you deserve. To learn more, call Ostroff Godshall Injury and Accident Lawyers.