If you have been injured in Colorado, you are no doubt curious about compensation for your injuries and losses. There are, in fact, two ways to secure financial compensation following an accident. The first method is to file a personal injury claim with an insurance company. The second is to contact a Wiggins personal injury attorney who can file a lawsuit against the party liable for your accident, on your behalf.
Whether you have been injured in a car, truck, motorcycle or any other kind of serious accident in Colorado, the basic steps for handling a claim are similar. Those steps are as follows:
- Evaluate Your Case. To have a legitimate personal injury claim, you must have suffered a personal injury as a result of the accident and not only property damage. Furthermore, the injuries must be the result of someone else’s negligence and you must have suffered recoverable damages. These include medical bills and lost wages, as well as additional out-of-pocket expenses.
- Collect Evidence. Call the authorities immediately after an accident. A police report will be invaluable to your claim. Document the accident scene if you are able. Seek medical attention for your injuries and notify the insurance company. Keep all receipts and records pertaining to the accident.
- Establish Liability. This step is integral to any successful personal injury claim. To be legally responsible for your injuries, you must show that the individual or entity owed you a duty to act in a certain way and that they breached that duty by acting in another way. Furthermore, those actions- or inactions- must have resulted in your injuries.
- Calculate Your Damages. There are two kinds of compensatory damages- special and general. Special damages are typically easy to document and calculate. These damages, also referred to as “specials,” include medical costs, out-of-pocket expenses, lost income, and property damage. General damages are more subjective and are more difficult to calculate. They include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
- Negotiate a Settlement. You begin by filing a claim against the at-fault party’s insurance company and they will respond with a reservation of rights letter indicating their intent to investigate. When you have sufficiently recovered from your injuries, you may send a demand letter to the insurance company that includes a detailed listing of your expenses. That figure will be your total special damages. Multiply this number between two and five times to calculate general damages.
- Accept or reject the Offer. If you decide to accept the insurance company’s settlement offer, the claims process will end at that point. If, however, you reject the offer, you and your attorney may decide to move forward with filing a personal injury lawsuit.
If, at any time, you have questions about the process, or your case becomes more complex than you originally thought, don’t hesitate to contact a personal injury attorney. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Contact Our Wiggins Personal Injury Lawyers
If you or someone you love has been injured in an accident in Wiggins, Weldona, Yuma, or anywhere in the State of Colorado, you have a right to seek compensation for your injuries and for damages. Contact Gregory A. Gold of the Gold Law Firm today for a free consultation at (303) 694-4653. Our Wiggins personal injury attorney is ready to fight for you and your rights to compensation. Call today!