One of the biggest misconceptions is that the car insurance company is looking out for your best interests.
(PRWEB) February 22, 2012
Inclement weather currently accounts for 24 percent of all automobile accidents in Utah. Recently the Utah Highway Patrol reported 376 crashes during the biggest storm of the season in five northern Utah counties alone. On average, Utah has 141 motor vehicle crashes each day, according to state officials.
And with automobile accidents on the rise during the winter season, officials at Car Crash Pain say accident victims need to be aware of their rights to avoid some very costly mistakes.
Car Crash Pain recently released the top five most expensive mistakes individuals make after being in a car accident which include:
1.) Ignoring or minimizing injuries.
According to officials at Car Crash Pain, it can take several months for injuries to become fully evident; don’t delay on getting medical treatment. People often think their injuries are minor enough that they will heal on their own, without the help of a doctor. Pain that lasts more than three months has a 90 percent chance of becoming permanent. There is no effective treatment for chronic pain symptoms once they develop.
Car Crash Pain officials said delayed treatment can result in more serious health issues in the future such as chronic headaches, neck and back pain, fatigue, arthritis and disc disease. Fifty percent of all chronic neck pain sufferers attribute their pain to a car accident.
2.) Believing that the car insurance company is on your side.
“One of the biggest misconceptions is that the car insurance company is looking out for your best interests,” said Dr. Dan LaFontaine at Car Crash Pain. “Their goal is to get you to settle your accident claim as quickly as possible, with the lowest possible settlement. Insurance companies are part of a multi-trillion dollar industry with a business model based on collecting the most in premiums, while paying the least in benefits.”
In Utah automobile insurance includes at least $3,000 in personal injury protection (PIP). Under PIP your medical costs will be paid without regard to "fault," or legal liability. Your insurance rates can’t legally go up if you use PIP, LaFontaine said.
3.) Accepting a settlement without fully understanding your rights.
Negotiating an insurance settlement after a car crash can be an extremely complex process.
“There’s a lot more to it than just getting your car fixed. Without professional legal guidance, you could be placed at a huge disadvantage by not utilizing the full range of services needed for recovery,” said LaFontaine. “Insurance companies have lawyers that fight the general public for them; accident victims are wise to do the same. The sooner you have an attorney on your side the higher the success rate.”
Some of the costs individuals might not consider include things like alternate transportation, financial loss from being out of work for injuries sustained and proving who’s at fault in the accident, he added.
4.) Choosing the wrong auto body repair shop.
Repair estimates can vary from as much as $500 to $2,000 for the same work. LaFontaine said that some common myths are that you need to select the lowest bid, get estimates from at least three different companies, or go with the auto body shop the insurance company selects. You have the right to choose who fixes your vehicle.
5.) Becoming overwhelmed by paperwork and deadlines.
Automobile accidents come with a flood of paperwork that needs to be completed in a timely manner. This can include everything from police reports and insurance forms to medical documentation. If forms are not filled out on time, you could miss out on a full range of benefits and end up having to pick up the costs on your own.
By releasing this information Car Crash Pain hopes to utilize their experience with health, legal, auto and insurance companies to reduce the expenses drivers incur after an accident, according to LaFontaine.
About Car Crash Pain
CarCrashPain.com helps accident victims through the recovery process by providing health, legal, auto and insurance information all in one convenient location. Becoming a member of the network is free and offers a host of complimentary benefits including access to car rentals, paperwork assistance and a step-by-step car crash checklist. Car Crash Pain directs individuals to the most experienced professionals to solve all of their accident needs.