Getting injured can be very frustrating, especially if it’s not your fault. If you are hurt due to someone else’s carelessness or negligence, you may be eligible to bring a boating accident claim. Austin boat accident attorney Daniel Smith handles these cases with expertise and experience. Call our office today to set up a free consultation.
How to Ensure a Successful Claim
The very first move that you need to make after you get hurt is to get to a medical care professional and receive a thorough medical exam. You need to tell them about every bump and bruise. Do not keep anything to yourself or else you could be paying for that dearly in the future. For example, if your neck only hurts a little, you still need to say something. It could only feel like whiplash right now, but later on you might find that it starts hurting more and more and it ends up being a slipped disc. This can happen with any injury, in theory. If you ignore it, it could get worse. Also, it is paramount to see a doctor so that we know what your injuries are and what your expected treatment and recovery plan so that we can show the insurance company that they owe you compensation for all of it.
The next most important step after you get hurt is to make sure you are doing your due diligence to collect evidence. This might be impossible if you are plucked out of the water and swept away in the back on an ambulance, and in those cases, you can ask the police or call an attorney or friend to go to the scene of the accident and do the collection for you. If you are able to stay there and delay medical treatment because your injuries are not life-threatening, you need to make sure you do a good job collecting evidence. You can take as many pictures and videos as your phone can hold. You might want to get photos from all angles and take photos of your injuries that are visible as well. If you see the cause of your injury plain and clear, make sure you document that as well. You will also want to talk to as many eyewitnesses as possible and gather their information. If you know who caused your accident, such as the driver who slammed into your boat, make sure you get their contact and insurance information as well.
Lastly, in order to use all of this information the right way, you need to find an attorney who knows what they’re doing. What you need to do is research all your options. Find a few attorneys to call, maybe have a free consultation with if they offer one, and evaluate if they are right for your case. You should interview them. Ask them if they have ever handled a boating case like yours before, and if they have, ask about the outcome. You should also take note about how quickly they get back to you, how often you get to actually speak to them and not an intake specialist, and if they seem to make your case a priority. Contact our office today to schedule a free consultation with experienced Austin boat accident attorney Daniel Smith.
Rules and Statutes
There are two things that can totally bar you from getting compensation if you haven’t educated yourself. The first is if you run out of time. In Texas, you have a statute of limitations of two years from the date of your accident. This is quicker than some states and it means you need to act quickly. Even if you’ve collected evidence at the scene, your witnesses might lose memory of what happened after a few months. You do not want to delay. You need to call an attorney right away so that they have ample time to get the ball rolling on making a success claim for you. If you come to an attorney on the day before your limitations runs out, they won’t be able to help you. You need to give your attorney time to do their job. Act fast on your case.
The second thing that could keep you from getting compensation is being found at fault for the accident. A good attorney can protect you from this in the right conditions, but if you decide to represent yourself, deal with the insurance company without an attorney, or obtain the representation of an attorney with no experience, you could be kissing your compensation goodbye. Texas laws state that you will not be able to collect a reward if you are found to be 50% or more at fault for your accident. If you are less than that, your award will be reduced. For example, if you are found to be 10% at fault for your injury, and you have been awarded $10,000, you will only be able to collect $9,000 of that award. For this reason, it is important to find an attorney who will keep you protected from the insurance company when they try to make you take the blame. You must remember that you should never give the insurance company a statement, even if they say it will help you. Odds are they’re only looking out for themselves and they are trying to pin this one on you.
Contact Our Office Today
If you need help building a successful claim, please call Austin boat accident attorney Daniel Smith today for a free consultation to see how we can get to work to help protect your rights and get you the compensation that you deserve. Let us do the heavy lifting while you focus on recovering.