When you have been injured in an accident, you are entitled to compensation. But there are ways you can inadvertently sabotage your claim. To ensure that you get the most fair and equitable compensation for your injuries and expenses, you must take care to avoid making these mistakes.
Not Paying Attention to Time Limits
Always be aware of time limit deadlines when it comes to filing a claim with ICBC. ICBC should be contacted as soon as possible after an accident. They then require that your Part 7 Accident Benefits forms be completed and returned as soon as possible. Statutory declaration forms must be submitted at this time as well. Form CL-22 must be completed and returned to ICBC within thirty days of the accident.
Filing in accordance with these timelines is important as details need to be chronicled and witnesses interviewed while memories are fresh. This is vitally important to any injury claim. An injury lawyer can help you navigate these forms and timelines.
Not Being Careful With What You Share
The ICBC adjuster wants you to believe that they have your best interests in mind but the goal of your adjuster is simply to save the insurance company money. As an employee, the goal is to keep your costs as low as possible. In fact, undervaluing your claim is what most adjusters are pressured to do. To this end, they will often try to get signed statements from you about your claim.
During the investigation of your claim, the adjuster will want you to sign release forms that entitle them to have access to medical records. The adjuster will also have access to all police reports, witness statements, and damage estimates. This is when having personal injury representation can be critical. Do not sign anything without the advice of a lawyer.
Taking an Early Settlement
You may be overwhelmed with bills and be anxious to put this behind you. But with the understanding that the ICBC adjuster will attempt to pay as little as possible in a settlement, it stands to reason that the first settlement offer will be low. Offering a low settlement early in the process is their way of avoiding payment of any potential future problems and getting the claim quickly off their books.
A quick settlement resolves the claim and means that you will not be able to revisit it should you require further medical attention or have other costs in the future due to your injuries. An early settlement is to ICBC’s advantage, not to yours.
Not Getting Legal Advice
Getting the advice of a personal injury lawyer in Campbell River, Abbotsford, Burnaby, or any other adjacent communities in BC ensures that you will not make these crucial mistakes. In most cases, injury lawyers offer free consultations and work on a contingency fee basis and only collect a portion of the recovery. When it comes to navigating injuries due to accidents, getting the advice of a legal expert is crucial to the fairest compensation.