California has more cars and people than any other state, resulting in a lot of car accidents each year. California is an at-fault state that says when one driver causes an accident, that driver is liable for medical costs, private property damage and other losses arising from the incident. Unfortunately, many people make common mistakes that can harm their case to pursue compensation from the at-fault driver. Here are five of the worst mistakes made.
Five common mistakes after a car accident
The first mistake is not calling the police, which happens surprisingly often and even when a personal injury occurs. The police write accident reports and can investigate if necessary to determine what happened. A police report that backs your claim gives you a lot credibility and helps to hold the liable party responsible.
Refusing medical attention can become a big problem if you have broken bones or soft tissue damage that was not readily apparent immediately following the accident. It also can make it harder to affirm that the accident actually caused one or more injuries.
Leaving the accident scene enables the other party to claim that you caused an accident and left. It also makes it very difficult to claim any injuries of your own that become known afterward. In addition, leaving the scene of an injury accident is a crime in many states.
The fourth mistake is talking to insurance adjusters. They are not on your side and often come across as very friendly and understanding in order to get you to make statements that harm your case, such as saying you feel well.
Lastly, not collecting evidence can make it impossible to prove that you are not at fault if the other driver lies. Even a receipt from a gas station might prove when and where you were at a precise time and show that the other party lied about circumstances leading to the accident.
How an attorney may help
When you suffer an injury or property damage and did not cause the accident, an experienced personal injury attorney may be a great asset. The attorney may take the lead, stop calls from insurers and help to build your case to hold the offending party liable.