The Basic Information
To drive legally, you must have auto insurance and all auto insurance companies provide for a procedure for filing a car accident compensation claim. This is something that you could handle yourself, if that is what you wanted to do.
At the scene of the collision the police most likely interviewed all parties involved and obtained the insurance information of everyone involved in the accident. A report was also written by the police naming who they thought was responsible for the collision. You will use this report as the basis of your claim.
What Are Your Damages?
Your damages may include auto replacement if your car was totaled, rehabilitation and medical treatment, auto repair and rental car cost while yours was in the shop, possible loss of income, ambulance cost, and other miscellaneous costs. You need to be "made whole" again, physically, mentally, and financially, that is the whole purpose of insurance. It is also possible that you could have a claim for "punitive" damages if the accident was caused by negligence, carelessness or a defect in the vehicle.
What It All Means
It isn't always as easy as just filing a claim with the insurance company and collecting money. It is possible that someone involved in the accident may sue you or that the insurance company may deny coverage based on a policy provision technicality So, it is almost always a good idea to hire a good personal injury attorney.
A personal injury lawyer will know the law in your area regarding accident compensation claims and be able to represent you with the insurance company. If needed, the attorney can represent you in court, give you legal advice as well as see that you receive just compensation awarded to you.
Many PI attorneys work on a percentage of the award, a contingency fee, meaning that, in most cases, you have no up front costs. In many cases you will receive as much or more with a good lawyer representing you as opposed to you doing it yourself. You also will have someone represent you that knows the PI law.
For You, The Bottom Line
An car accident is never fun and can cause you mental and physical trauma. How you handle it after the wreck will determine how you come out both physically and financially. A medical professional will help you heal physically and a personal injury attorney may be what you need to get the compensation due you.
Always consult with a medical or legal professional for legal and medical advice. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant as legal or medical advice.
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Article Added on Wednesday, February 2, 2011
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