According to statistics from the Governor’s Highway Safety Office, about 1,000 people have lost their lives on Tennessee roads every year from 2001 to 2014. In 2010 alone, 6441 people were seriously injured in wrecks. This represents a huge number of people in our state who have been significantly harmed by car accidents and, in many cases, by careless drivers who chose to drive drunk, distracted, or otherwise dangerously.
After a serious wreck, one of the most important decisions you can make is the decision to get help from the best personal injury attorney possible. If you are feeling overwhelmed, or if you need help making sense of your rights, you can call our Franklin car accident lawyers right now at 615-807-7900 for immediate assistance. At GriffithLaw, we make it our job to make things right for the victims of car accidents caused by others.
What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Car Accident in Tennessee
Very few people are really prepared for an accident. If you are one of the thousands of people who have been hurt on our Tennessee roads, then you already know how confusing it can be—from the first moment of impact to the recovery from your injuries. To help you protect yourself, your family, and your future after you’ve been hurt, here are some simple steps you can take:
Seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY
Seeing a doctor or going to the emergency room is the best way to get appropriate treatment for car accident injuries. It also provides documentation of the accident and how bad your injuries are.
Take as many pictures as possible
Especially the car that hit you. Insurance companies later do not like to share that information voluntarily.
Don’t agree to a settlement or give a statement
Sometimes, insurance companies like State Farm, Farmers, and Allstate will immediately make a settlement offer or start asking you to sign forms and give statements. If you don’t understand your rights and haven’t yet spoken to an attorney of your own, avoid giving a statement or accepting a settlement.
Keep good records
The more you document, the better prepared you will be to succeed. Get names, numbers, and photographs at the scene. Get a copy of the police report. Write down the names of any doctors you see. Keep pill bottles from any medication you are prescribed. Keep a journal with information about your recovery. All these little things can go a long way toward helping you win your case.
Be careful what you say about your car accident
Although it may seem obvious that you are seriously hurt, the things you say to an adjuster, a company representative, the other driver, or even on social media sites can be taken out of context and used against you. There are even cases where seemingly irrelevant posts on Facebook or photographs from family events have been used to minimize victims’ claims. People have been blamed for having a "new accident" by simply sneezing, or lifting groceries or a bag of dog food. Be careful what you share with the insurance adjuster. Remember, he is the eyes and ears for the insurance company and is looking for any way to get out of paying you full value for your claim.
Get in touch with an experienced car accident lawyer
You are very likely to make some mistakes early on in your case that you have no idea you are making. These mistakes often cannot be undone. It’s hard to do everything on your own. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you investigate what happened, learn about your rights, and find out how to take action to protect yourself and get your case fairly resolved.
It may seem like a lot of trouble to go to, especially if you’re not yet sure that you want to file a personal injury claim against the other driver. However, taking steps like these helps ensure that you have the information and documentation you need if you do decide to assert your rights as a victim.
Why Hiring GriffithLaw for a Serious Car Wreck Matters to Your Family
The right lawyer makes a huge difference in your type of case. You are faced with a lot of challenges. Your injuries may prevent you from going to work, taking care of your family, or engaging fully in daily life. The cost of your medical treatment can drain your savings, and sometimes you are unable to return to work or recover fully to your pre-accident condition. Although it can seem unfair, protecting your future after a wreck can take a little work on your part and a lot of knowledge about your rights.
There are seldom "accidents." Wrecks are not caused by accident. They are caused because some driver was driving too long after being pushed by his trucking supervisor, or a person had to be checking social media on their phone while traveling behind you and not paying any attention to what is in front of them while driving down the interstate. If the other driver in the accident was careless, reckless, or otherwise negligent in causing the accident, the law gives you rights to recover financial compensation for your injuries. Depending on your situation, this might include money for your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. However, insurance companies rarely pay the full value of a victim’s claim without a fight. Victims need to take steps to get informed and avoid common mistakes in order to protect themselves.
“At first… John gave us HOPE. Then… HE DELIVERED.” -Keri Sandifer
In a former life, John Griffith was a claims adjuster. He worked for Progressive Insurance. That experience led him to never ever work for any insurance company again and use that inside experience to your advantage now. John and his team know exactly what the insurance adjusters are looking for when they roundtable your case. He knows exactly how to avoid the pitfalls of your case and keep you from stepping on a landmine and having your case blow up in your face.
John also is an award-winning trial lawyer. He has some of the largest verdicts in several counties in Tennessee. John knew from his insurance adjuster days that insurance companies know which lawyers are "settle only" lawyers, and which lawyers get more respect because they are not afraid to take a case to trial, and more importantly...KNOW HOW TO WIN, AND WIN BIG. Ironically, because John has the reputation of being so aggressive in pushing his cases to trial and winning, insurance companies settle their claims with GriffithLaw clients over 99% of the time. Reputation matters.
You need to ask your car accident lawyer how many jury cases he/she has tried to verdict. Jury trials are a whole different ballgame when it comes to trying cases than just before a judge. Persuasion is a true art form.
There are a lot of factors at play in any car accident case, and insurance companies have teams of adjusters and lawyers who are experienced in minimizing claims from car accident victims. However, talking with an attorney of your own and asserting your rights means that you have a chance to get the financial support you need, both now and in the future. And, if you’ve already been seriously hurt and are worried about what happens next, you know how much that can matter.
Five Secrets the Insurance Companies Don't Want You to Know
Secret 1: The insurance adjuster is trained to control the direction of your claim in order to provide maximum benefits for the insurance company and minimum benefits to you.
Secret 2: Any statement given by you will very likely be used against you.
Secret 3: A prior injury or medical condition will likely be used against you.
Secret 4: A quick settlement is not always the best settlement.
Secret 5: The medical treatment for your injury will be closely scrutinized by the insurance companies.
How Our Experienced Car Accident Lawyers Can Help You
Our experienced car accident lawyers are local to Nashville and understand what it takes to win a personal injury case. We have helped families and individuals across Tennessee stand up for their rights against State Farm, Farmers, Allstate, Progressive, Geico and all major insurance companies, and we would be happy to discuss your concerns in a completely free case review. As former insurance adjusters, we are intimately familiar with the tricks insurance companies use to deny or reduce the value of car accident cases, and we are passionate about representing victims and “leveling the playing field” between huge companies and regular people. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to our Franklin law office at 615-807-7900 or use the contact form on this page.