New Year's Eve is a time to celebrate. Parties, food and, of course, alcohol. Unfortunately, that means a greater chance of people getting behind the wheel and causing a drunk driving accident. These accidents often involve serious injuries.
After being hit by a drunk driver, here are the first steps you should take:
Get Medical Attention
This seems obvious, but all too often people write off their injuries as minor only to have them worsen after time passes and the adrenaline rush wears off. Getting immediate treatment and going to all of your follow-up appointments not only improves your odds for a fast recovery, it means that your injuries will be documented, which will prove beneficial in a claim against the drunk driver.
Write down everything you can remember about the drunk driving crash. Note what happened and where it happened. Note the names and contact information of all witnesses. Photos of your injuries before they heal, photos of your car before it is repaired and photos of the crash scene before it is cleaned up can all be valuable to your claim.
Do Not Talk To The Drunk Driver's Insurance Company
You may be contacted by an insurance adjuster to talk about the car wreck. Keep in mind that the adjuster's goal is to find reason to devalue your claim and offer you the lowest possible settlement. It is human nature to want to be strong in these situations and downplay the severity of your injuries, but this could work against you. Your best bet is not to discuss the matter to avoid saying anything that could hurt your claim.
The insurance company may offer a settlement. You have the right to review the settlement with a lawyer to verify that it is sufficient. If you accept a settlement that turns out to be too low and falls short of covering all your costs, you will not be able to ask for more. Do not sign anything.
Talk To An Attorney
You can talk to a personal injury attorney for free. These cases are handled on a contingent fee basis, which means you only pay if you get compensation. In other words, there is nothing to lose and everything to gain by talking to someone who has made a career out of helping injured people. Talk to attorney James Arruebarrena in New Orleans.