When you’ve been injured in an accident that was not your fault, you may have grounds for a personal injury lawsuit. Even if your lawsuit may look easy to win, an injured party should consider many things injured parties need to get the best outcome. Here are some common mistakes to avoid making:

  1. File claim without legal representation. Yes, you can file a personal injury claim without legal representation, but it isn’t wise. A personal-injury attorney can guide you through the process and make successful arguments in court on your behalf. Hiring representation early in the process will help avoid any pitfalls you might encounter listed on this page. Contact McKeehan Law Group today for a free consultation.
  2. Don’t keep track of medical records and other documents (police report, witness statements etc.). One of the first mistakes victims of an injury accident make is related to organization and documentation. This is the failure to keep a file containing medical records, witness statements, police reports and other documents that can help advance their case. Your lawsuit preparation should include an organized and methodical approach.
  3. Miss filing window/don’t file inside statute of limitations. Many claims have a statute of limitations to be placed. Research for this information and file your claim well within the limits.
  4. Not seeing a doctor right away and refusing to follow their orders. If you’ve been injured in an accident, it is important to have a doctor assess that injury right away. Without a medical record that supports your injury claim, you’re not going to get far with the courts. Once you’ve seen a doctor, they are likely to give you orders for continued care and modification of activities to keep your injury from worsening. Following those orders will not only help you heal but will help your case. A plaintiff going against medical advice and behaving as if they have not been injured is not a good look.
  5. Exaggerating injury. It is important to be specific about your injuries and not to claim anything that isn’t true. Proof that a victim exaggerated their injury may negate important evidence. This is true even if you did sustain injury of some sort as result of an accident. Having to explain an exaggeration of injury in court can seriously damage your case.
  6. Give a recorded statement to the insurance company. Never give a recorded statement to an insurance company. Never.  The insurance company is a business and is out to protect its bottom line, instead of having your best interest at heart. Don’t hesitate to negotiate and stick to what you think you deserve.
  7. Settling too early in the process with insurance/taking the first offer. It is possible the insurance company will make an offer early in the process that you consider fair. It is important to remember that insurance likely considers the first offer to be a minimum they’re willing to pay, so you should always reject it and/or make a counteroffer.
  8. Sharing too much on social media. In concert with the need to follow your doctor’s instructions, you should be careful sharing anything on social media during the weeks between filing and your court date. The best advices is to stop posting on social media during your lawsuit. Definitely avoid posting any proof of risky behavior.  For example:  Clients losing a personal injury case after posting ski trip photos or videos only weeks after their accident.

  9. Provide inconsistent testimony. Get your story straight and be consistent at all times. Not only does your story need to be accurate without exaggerating your injuries, any time you tell your story it needs to be the same. Write it down while the memory is fresh and stick to it.
  10. Not taking your claim seriously enough as an adversarial matter. Filing a personal injury lawsuit against another party is an adversarial act, and it must be treated as such. Hire legal representation and follow the above guidelines to prepare.

McKeehan Law Group offers more information on their blog about deciding if you have a valid claim for a personal injury lawsuit and an outline of the seven steps you’re required to take when filing. But instead of doing all the research yourself, take advantage of a free consultation with our personal injury lawyers today.