Washington State is a fault state. If you were injured in an accident in Spokane because of someone’s negligence, you might have a valid personal injury case. This is only when the other party owes you a duty of care. No matter the circumstances, you need to take action in time to get a fair settlement for your injuries and losses. While the at-fault party cannot reverse things, the settlement can help with your financial situation and cover medical bills, income losses, and other damages. Below are some factors that can undermine your injury case in Spokane.
- Not hiring a lawyer. People often wrongly assume that insurance companies will be empathetic to their situation. These companies work for profit, and they will do anything to reduce the settlement. Call a Spokane personal injury attorney soon after the accident to get advice on your rights and interests. They can also share an overview of the strengths and weaknesses of your claim and what you can expect in a settlement.
- Not getting medical attention. Even if you believe that your injuries are not that severe, you must see a doctor. Let the injury doctor know that it was an accident. Without detailed and comprehensive medical records and bills, you cannot expect a fair settlement. Also, some injuries, especially after a car accident, only show up weeks later.
- Not gathering evidence. The accident scene is your best resource for evidence. Unless you are incapable of doing so physically, make sure that you gather photos, videos of the accident scene. Take details of witnesses and defendants, and don’t forget to file a police report.
- Not taking action in time. Every state, including Washington State, has a statute of limitations. You have three years from the accident date to take legal action against the at-fault party. If you miss that deadline, the court will dismiss your injury lawsuit, except for rare circumstances.
- Blaming the other party or admitting blame. Accidents are rarely black and white. Washington follows the pure comparative negligence rule. Even if you were partly at fault, you might be able to recover compensation for your injuries and losses. However, ensure that you don’t blame the other party or admit fault at the accident scene.
Also, do not give a statement to the other party’s insurer unless you have a lawyer by your side. Your lawyer can handle the negotiations of your injury claim.