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The information below will give you an overview of your rideshare accident claim. First, you’ll see the common mistakes people make in their rideshare claims in Texas. Then we’ll use a story to illustrate additional important aspects of your case. Be sure you read the information all the way through.
Common Rideshare Accident Claim Mistakes
There are several mistakes people commonly make that devalue or slow down their rideshare claims. Please read through each to save yourself from making the same missteps in your claim.
Not Getting Medical Treatment After a Rideshare Accident
People fail to seek medical treatment after rideshare accidents more often than you’d probably expect. This is often because they don’t realize how seriously they’ve been injured.
That might seem impossible, but it actually makes sense. Traumatic events like automobile accidents cause an adrenaline rush that can make it harder to feel pain. The effect can last for hours, even into the next day.
Whether you can tell you are injured or not after a rideshare accident, it’s crucial to get checked by medical professionals. It will protect your physical health and it will protect the value of your rideshare accident claim.
Showing up for a medical exam will create a record of your injuries and when you were examined. The closer this timestamp is to the time of the accident, the stronger the evidence for your case.
Waiting a few days to go to the doctor gives the insurance company responsible for paying on your claim a chance to suggest your injuries could have occurred on a different day.
They can try to get your claim thrown out by arguing their client had nothing to do with your injuries.
Giving your claim the strongest possible foundation includes establishing an official record of your injuries and when they occurred.
Not Following Through With Your Doctor’s Orders
After you’re released from the medical facility, you will be given instructions for how you can help with your continued recovery. The doctor’s treatment plan may include medication that should be taken a certain way or involve going to physical or occupational therapy appointments. There are many forms your doctor’s treatment plan can take.
Your job when you leave the doctor’s office is to keep your health and your case strong by following the instructions you are given. If you don’t, the insurance company can again try to blame any difficulties during recovery on you.
This is especially true if you are found to be returning too quickly to former activities that you need to pause for a while as you heal. Following doctor’s orders by not doing activities is as important as showing up to do others that will help you get stronger.
Do Not Give a Recorded Statement to the Insurance Provider
You can expect an adjuster from the insurance company to call you not long after the accident, asking to record your statement. They will sound very authoritative, and likely will claim that telling ‘your side of the story’ will help your claim.
Don’t make this mistake.
The insurance provider is sadly not trying to help you. They are trying to help themselves by looking for weak spots in your claim. The weaker they can make your claim, the less they will have to pay you.
These people are trained to put you at ease and get you talking. It’s important to know that you are not actually required to speak with them. You are within your rights to politely say ‘no’ and hang up.
Communications with the insurance company are a great item to hand over to your rideshare accident attorneys.
Don’t Wait to Call an Attorney
It’s a mistake to use the statute of limitations for filing your claim to decide when to contact an attorney.
Even if you feel like you’ve got plenty of time, it’s critical to remember that evidence is not likely to stick around. The longer you wait, the less of it there will be.
The same is true for witnesses. You may have a few witnesses, which is very valuable in strengthening your claim. Waiting to call a lawyer, however, prevents them from contacting your witnesses as quickly as possible. In the meantime, your witnesses may move, change contact information, or forget important details about your case.
You can help build the strongest rideshare claim possible by calling an attorney as soon as you are able.
Choosing An Attorney Who is Not the Right Fit for Your Rideshare Accident Claim
It’s a mistake to assume that any lawyer could take your case and get you the same results.
Like surgeons, lawyers have areas of specific focus. Would you go to a cardiologist for an ulcer? Probably not. Don’t just grab any attorney. Even one that’s recommended by a friend or family member is not a good fit if they don’t have experience with rideshare claims.
Your strongest case will be made by a personal injury lawyer with experience with rideshare accident claims,
Your attorney should also be a trial attorney.
Whether your claim gets settled or goes to trial, hiring a trial attorney can be of great help. Naturally, if your case goes to trial, you need someone with a track record of winning cases in the courtroom. Many people don’t realize, however, that if you hire a skilled trial attorney, it’s quite possible the insurance company will know who they are. This alone may make them more willing to settle in order to avoid a trial.
Texas Rideshare Accident Client Story
The story that follows is intended to provide you with additional information on your rideshare claim. Names and specifics have been changed to disguise the identity of our clients, but the usefulness of the information remains. Please read it to the end. You’ll learn a lot as you do.
When you’re done, please give us a call to get answers for your specific case through a free legal consultation.
A few years back, on a pleasant November morning a few miles outside of El Paso, Tony Amato called his nephew Dylan into the office for a chat.
When Dylan entered the office, Tony waved him to have a seat. As was his practice, he punched on the corner of his uncle’s desk. Tony smiled.
“What’s up, Uncle T?”
“Dylan, your aunt Lili and I want to retire, move to the coast. What would you say if I offered to sell you the farm? I know you want to be a big business man and all that, but you’re smart. You know all about computers and the internet. You could really do well here, expand.”
“Really? That would be amazing! I would love that. You know, I’ve got all kinds of ideas—”
“I know you do,” Tony laughed, “But what about Ana? With the baby coming, do you think she’ll be interested? We could work out payments so you can buy the business over time, and of course, the house comes with the ranch. I could hold the note. We just want our alpacas to go to someone who loves them.”
“I know Ana will say ‘Yes.’ Uncle T. I can’t wait to tell her!”
Dylan jumped off the desk.
“Can I go talk to her now? Great news like this should be delivered in person.”
“Sure, but the truck is out with Amelia at the feed store.”
“No worries, Uncle T., I’ll call a rideshare.”
Tony shook his head, chuckling. “You crazy kids. You’re a good boy, Dylan, I’m happy you want to do this.”
Dylan gave his uncle a hug, playfully lifting the smaller man off the ground and spinning him around.
Sitting on the front porch of the office while he waited for his ride, Dylan googled construction ideas for adding a gift shop to the alpaca farm.
Half an hour later, he was in the back of the rideshare car on his way to his wife’s job in El Paso. He had so many ideas, so much to talk to her about. He was certain she’d be elated to leave her job to open her own weaving business on the farm. He couldn’t wait to tell her.
Dylan was only half a mile away when his wife called. He hadn’t told her he was coming because he’d wanted to surprise her. Realizing it was almost lunch time, he decided to answer and ask her to lunch.
Before he could pull it from his pocket, the rideshare driver heard the phone and reached for his own, thinking he was getting a call. It wasn’t on the seat beside him. He took his eyes off the road and leaned to the right to see if it had fallen into the foot well on the passenger side. He didn’t even see the car whose path he’d drifted into.
The rideshare car collided head-on with the other driver just as Dylan answered his phone. Ana was startled by the ear-splitting noise of the crash and she dropped the phone, disconnecting the call.
Dylan spent two weeks in the hospital with whiplash and damage to his spine before being moved to a rehabilitation facility for at least another month. The doctors told him there was a chance he would walk again, but they wouldn’t know for a while.
Ana called us on her husband’s behalf a week into his hospital stay. She said they would like to talk to us about a possible rideshare accident claim, but first needed to know how much it would cost. Their other main questions were about the value of Dylan’s case and how long it might take.
We met the Amatos that afternoon at the hospital. Since Dylan would be going directly to the rehabilitation facility for some time after the hospital, everyone agreed that the sooner they got their questions answered, the stronger their case would be, should they choose to move forward.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Rideshare Accident Attorney?
We entered the room to find the couple talking quietly. They greeted us warmly and Dylan said, “Hey, before you sit down and get comfortable, we’d better make sure we can afford you.”
His smile was quick and it was easy to see that he was a good-natured guy. Everybody laughed, and we told him we get that a lot.
“Actually, there’s no upfront cost to you. We work on a contingency model, so we cover all the costs of your case from start to finish. At the end, we only get paid after resolving your claim successfully.”
Eyebrows raised. “Wow, okay, so far so good,” said Ana.
How Much Is My Rideshare Claim Worth?
Dylan then asked, “How much do you think my case is worth?”
We told him that is tough to estimate accurately at the start of a case.
“First, we need to do an accident investigation, collecting evidence and speaking to witnesses. Then, we’d need to get a thorough understanding of your economic and non-economic damages.
“We can start an investigation right away, working up your case as if it were going all the way to trial. The damages part, though, will require your help, Dylan.”
We explained that we’d need him to reach maximum medical improvement before we would know his damages.
“That’s going to be the point at which your doctors say you are ‘back to normal’ health. If that’s not doable, then we need you to reach the highest level of health possible after your injuries.
“Maximum medical improvement will mean you are done with surgeries and we understand what, if any, future medical treatment will look like.
“It’s going to take commitment on your part Dylan, to make your recovery your priority. This means following your doctor’s treatment plan very closely in the coming months while you heal. That includes not overdoing it. No work until the doctors approve.”
“I don’t need any encouragement there. I’ve got my wife and daughter to recover for,” Dylan declared, squeezing Ana’s hand.
“Wonderful. Once you reach maximum medical recovery, we’ll understand your damages. Then we’ll know what your claim is worth.”
“That makes sense,” Ana said to her husband, who agreed.
How Long Will My Rideshare Claim Take?
“So, how long do you think my husband’s claim could take?” Ana asked placing her hand on her small baby bump. “Because this little girl is coming in four months. Do you think we’ll be done with the case by then?”
“This, too, is difficult to predict, because it will depend on a couple of factors. First, we need to know Dylan’s damages before we can move the case along. That means the pace of Dylan’s recovery is going to set the pace of his case.
“When he reaches maximum medical improvement, we’ll know his damages and will send the insurance company a demand letter.
“From there, the case timeline will be driven by how reasonable the insurance company is. If they are willing to work with us towards a fair settlement, the case will proceed smoothly. If not, we go to court, at which point the case timeline will follow the trial timeline.
“Please try not to let this possibility bother you. Our firm has a long and successful track record of bringing cases like yours before juries. In fact, if you hire us, the insurance company may ask to settle when they discover who they’d be up against in the courtroom.
“Of course, there are no guarantees which way they are going to react, but either way, we’ll be ready. That’s why we build your case from the beginning as if it is going to go to trial.
“And, it’s why it’s always to your advantage to choose a personal injury trial attorney who has a successful record in the courtroom.”
The Amatos were comfortable with the answers we provided and retained us then and there. As we were getting up to leave, Ana’s dark brown eyes fixed on her husband as she said, “Okay, Dylan, clock’s ticking, time to get better.” She then flashed a radiant smile and everyone laughed.
Today we are happy to say that we got Dylan over six times the amount the insurance company initially offered.
Call Our Texas Rideshare Accident Attorneys Today
We hope this story has given you a better understanding of the main elements of your rideshare accident claim. Since every case is unique, please take us up on our offer of free legal advice and call us to discuss your case. Remember, you are not alone. Give us a call today.