If you were injured in a car accident in San Marcos or elsewhere in Southern California, it is essential to know how to file an auto accident claim. Every car accident case will have its own particular set of facts, but we want to provide you with more information about the claims process and the ways a San Marcos car accident lawyer can help.
Gather Information to Support Your Claim
You will need to gather information and evidence to support your car accident case. This process starts at the scene of the accident, where you should take photographs of the scene on your smartphone. You should also obtain contact information for anyone else involved in the collisions as well as witnesses who may be able to support your version of the events. Beyond the initial scene, it is also important to get medical attention as soon as possible. By seeing a doctor quickly, you will be able to prove that your injuries resulted from the car accident, and your medical records will become important evidence in your case.
Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company
Before you file a claim, you will need to report the accident to your own insurance company. When you report the accident, stick to the facts. If you offer your opinion, the insurance company could try to use it against you at a later date.
File an Auto Insurance Claim
Filing an auto insurance claim is usually the next step for anyone who was injured in a crash in California. To file an auto insurance claim, you will need to decide whether to file a first-party claim through your own auto insurer or a third-party claim through the at-fault driver’s auto insurer. Your car accident attorney can discuss the benefits and limitations of each.
Negotiate With the Insurance Company
Once you have filed your auto insurance claim, the insurance company will need to do an investigation, after which point it will make you a settlement offer. You should know that the settlement offer is negotiable, and you should not accept the first offer you get. Your car accident lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf in order to get you a higher settlement offer.
File Your Car Accident Lawsuit
If the auto insurance company will not offer a reasonable settlement, or if insurance limits prevent you from receiving complete compensation for your losses, it is time to file a car accident lawsuit. You will need to ensure that you file your lawsuit before the statute of limitations runs out. Under California law, an injured plaintiff typically has two years from the date of the car accident to file a claim.
Seek Advice from a San Marcos Auto Accident Lawyer Today
Car accident injuries can be devastating, and they typically happen because of another motorist’s negligence. It is important to hold that at-fault party accountable. Our San Marcos auto accident attorneys can assist with your auto insurance claim and negotiations with the auto insurer. If you cannot get the compensation you are owed from the insurance claim, we will represent you in your car accident lawsuit. Contact the Walton Law Firm to learn more about how we can help.
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