Delaware Auto Accident Lawsuits: Overcoming Obstacles To Compensation
UPDATED: February 18, 2020
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When you've been involved in a car accident, it's important to realize that you are entitled to compensation for your injuries. However, overcoming obstacles to receive that compensation can be an uphill battle without the assistance of an experienced car accident lawyer.
Delaware Attorney James Folsom
James Folsom, a Delaware attorney with over 30 years experience whose practice focuses on personal injury claims, explained some of the obstacles car accident victims often face when seeking compensation and offered advice on how to overcome them.
- Insurance companies. Insurance companies know that they have to pay claims when you've got a solid case. However, it depends upon the circumstances. If you've got a close case where your client is almost as guilty as the other guy, then they're going to argue that they're not responsible for paying anything because your client was more at fault than our guy. However, if you've got a straight forward case where the other guy ran a stop sign or the red light, then they know that they're liable for it.
Both sides know that if they've got liability, then they have to pay what we call the specials, or the actual costs. In other words, if it's $200 to repair the car, then they've got to pay $200 to repair the car. If the person went to the hospital and got medical attention that cost $1,000, they're going to have to pay $1,000. They know that to begin with, so they know that now you've got $1,200 worth of damages and that they've got to pay $1,200.
- Intangible injuries. The things that we argue about are the intangibles that you can't put your finger on such as pain and suffering, inconvenience and things like that. They're real things, they're real suffering and they're real damages. However, if you've got $1,200 in damages, what do you pay on top of that to compensate for things like pain and suffering? That's when you get into the arguments back and forth. Basically, both sides look at the severity of the accident, the permanent injury as opposed to a temporary injury, the loss of limbs and things of that nature that make it worse.
Soft tissue injuries, in particular, are difficult to assess. In other words, you can take an X-ray of a broken arm and take it to court and say, "Look, there's a broken arm." However, if you've got whiplash or something like that, you've got no proof, no X-ray, no broken bone and no actual proof of any injury.
- Overcoming biases. Unfortunately, there are some people that will fake an injury. Because of that, I don't think that insurance companies are always being nasty or rude when they don't want to settle a claim because they don't believe the injury happened like that.
In fact, they may hire private investigators to photograph somebody playing tennis who claims they've got a neck injury. They will follow you around, especially if the demand is a huge amount. So, while I can't blame the insurance companies in all cases because they have a legitimate reason to suspect fraud in some cases, they can't simply deny a soft tissue because it can't be proven to the same degree as a tangible injury. That's what lawyers argue about.
If you've been injured in a car accident, contact an experienced Delaware car accident attorney to discuss your situation and evaluate your options. Consultations are free, without obligation and are strictly confidential.