No matter the cause or circumstances, the aftermath of a car accident is always complicated. Colorado is a fault state, so if your injuries and losses are a result of someone’s neglect, you can ask for compensation. The truth is most people don’t want to go to court and are scared of the entire process. Victims are already under financial distress, and therefore, they don’t always seek legal representation. The good news is hiring a car accident lawyer Colorado Springs doesn’t have to be expensive, as most lawyers work on a contingency fee. Filing an insurance claim doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some facts worth knowing.
Steps to follow
Before anything else, you have to first determine how the crash happened. Establishing fault and liability is important, because that sets the steps for filing an insurance claim.
- File the claim. You can file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurer. You are also required to share documentation of the accident, proof of your injuries and losses. If there were witnesses to the case, you are required to give their statements too. If you have missed out on work, you must also offer evidence of income loss.
- Negotiating with the insurance company. The claims adjuster will usually make an offer, if they find that your claim is valid. At this point, you are expected to negotiate with the insurance company, which often is the trickiest part. Colorado is a modified comparative negligence state. If you had a share in fault, this can significantly impact what you get in compensation. Negotiating with the claims adjuster is best left to an attorney.
Is there a need for trial?
If negotiation with the insurance company goes as expected, you can always reach a settlement, and there will be no trial. However, a fair compensation cannot be agreed upon, approaching the court is necessary. Filing a personal injury lawsuit may sound complicated, but with a good attorney on your side, you can avoid common mistakes.
The statute of limitations
Colorado’s statute of limitations sets the deadline for filing an injury lawsuit after a car accident. You have three years, from the date of accident, to file a lawsuit against the at-fault party. Note that the statute of limitations is not applicable for insurance claims.
You should inform the insurance companies, including your own insurer, within a reasonable time, or your claim can be denied.