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Top 25 Reasons People Wait to File Their Personal Injury Claims

Top 25 Reasons People Wait to File Their Personal Injury Claims

Each year, millions of Americans suffer personal injuries due to other people’s negligence. Sadly, most victims fail to recover the compensation they’re entitled to either out of ignorance of their rights or fear of the legal system. 

Yet according to statistics, only about 4% of 400,000 personal injury cases make it to trial each year. The rest are usually resolved without going to court. Below are the top 25 reasons people delay or fail to file personal injury claims. 

Missing Out on Benefits: 25 Reasons Why People Delay Filing Personal Injury Claims

If you’ve ever been involved in a personal injury case, chances are you delayed or thought of not taking legal action for the following reasons. 

1. Lack of Sufficient Evidence

Strong evidence builds up the credibility of a case, without which a personal injury claim may not be successful. When you don’t have enough evidence to prove third-party liability, it can be challenging to push your claim forward. Consider working with a California personal injury lawyer to try to strengthen your case. 

2. Private Settlement with Insurance Adjusters

As expected, the liable party’s insurance adjuster will likely try to make a direct deal. They’ll probably offer a specific amount so the injured party doesn’t file any personal injury case against them. It’s important to remember that people deserve fair compensation for pain, medical expenses, and other damages. It is a good idea to consult with a personal injury attorney to ensure you don’t agree to a bad deal, however tempting the offer is, to determine whether it may be a better option to file a personal injury claim within the deadline imposed by law. 

3. Multiple Liable Parties

In a personal injury case involving multiple parties who may be liable for the accident or injury, locating them and gathering the required information can be overwhelming. When dealing with a health crisis, people may be unable to accomplish that within the shortest time possible. 

4. Fear of Negative Perception

You may feel concerned about the impact of a claim on your reputation. The assumption that it will portray you as an opportunist is likely unfounded since your health, financial security, and future well-being are on the line. Seeking legal advice and legal intervention is not a crime, so protect your rights proactively.

5. Lack of Medical Proof

Delaying to receipt of medical treatment may complicate your injuries resulting in inconsistencies in your medical reports. These are possible loopholes the liable party’s attorney might be able to use to fight a claim. Most of the time, the first step to a successful personal injury claim is seeking appropriate medical attention and keeping a detailed medical record. 

6. Lack of Professional Legal Representation

Immediately after an accident involving a personal injury, the at-fault party’s lawyers or insurance providers will probably contact the injured party with advice and offers. People who are injured are likely to be bombarded and overwhelmed to the point they delay following the right channel to fight for their rights. 

To be on the safe side, consider letting whoever wants to contact you do so through your personal injury lawyer, who is better placed to protect your rights.

7. Zero Motivation

People may feel frustrated and overwhelmed by the prospect of a legal battle, thinking it’s tedious and time-consuming. While this is true, it’s nothing compared to the agony and financial burdens people have to bear as the people responsible get away with causing harm. A motivated injured party can focus on receiving treatment and getting better while a dedicated attorney fights their battles. 

8. Emotional Agony

Accidents and their aftermath can be deeply traumatizing. The emotional distress can make filing a timely personal injury claim impossible. Working with the best legal team possible ensures access to counseling, therapy, and quality health care. These costs are generally eventually paid for by compensation recovered from a successful claim. 

9. Uncertainty About the Responsible Parties

An accident can be disorienting and confusing. If you can’t locate or ascertain who is liable, it can take some time before a claim can be filed. However, delays can cause you to miss the deadline forever, locking you out of any damages you may recover. Your responsible attorney will be able to investigate the accident and might be able to locate the liable party to ensure timely legal action. 

10. Lack of Awareness

If you don’t know your rights in a personal injury matter, you may not know how to go about it. The longer you mull over the viability of your claim, the weaker your case may be. It’s advisable to obtain legal counsel for possible representation from the outset. 

11. Fear of the Unknown

The justice system and the legal procedures can be intimidating, especially if you don’t have a legal team. Endeavor to work with a reputable attorney with a history of counseling and advising on even the most complex personal injury cases

12. Threats from Liable Parties

People who know they have broken the law by not providing you with a duty of care may try unorthodox means to evade responsibility. They can threaten to harm or destroy you through other means if you take legal action against them. Always know that it’s your right to file a timely claim if you might be able to prove liability.  An attorney may be able to advise on how to best handle threats to injured parties.  

13. Underestimating Your Injuries

It’s not enough to assume you will recover quickly from your injuries. Some seemingly minor issues can transition into a full-blown medical crisis. Filing a personal injury claim soon after an accident ensures that important rights will be secured should things get out of control. 

14. Financial Concerns

A personal injury is expensive, no doubt. Even as you focus on your recovery, you must contend with bills upon piling bills. People may think they cannot afford an attorney to handle things professionally. 

However, you should know that potential compensation may cater to everything from attorney’s fees to medical bills and other damages. For those types of concerns, the idea is for people to consider working with a brilliant attorney with a reputation for winning cases and whose fees will be able to be covered after a successful claim. 

15. Lack of Reliable Witnesses

Sometimes witnesses can pull out of a potential personal injury case out of intimidation or fear of retaliation from liable parties. When people lack reliable witnesses to back up a case, they may feel discouraged, leading to a delay, postponement, or dropping of the case. 

16. Lack of Awareness of the Status of Limitations

Did you know the clock starts ticking the moment the accident occurs? In most cases, personal injury victims may have up to two years to file a case and pursue compensation in California. But not in all cases. Missing the deadline for whatever reason automatically bars you from taking any successful legal action in the future regarding your case. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with California’s statute of limitations. Other statutes may even further limit the time people have to pursue their rights.

17. Unwillingness to Cause Trouble

This may sound like cowardice, but some people avoid taking legal action because they want to avoid trouble with insurance companies, liable parties, and even legal representatives. People should have nothing to fear for seeking what they are entitled to under the law. If people can’t go it alone, our legal team would be happy to help schedule an appointment for a free consultation. 

18. Changes in Circumstances

Life’s inevitable events may disrupt your plans for filing an injury claim. For example, if involved in an auto accident where other passengers succumb, the incident can be devastating and draining. In a situation like that, people may not be able to file a claim on time. All injured parties are encouraged to contact an attorney immediately so they can handle the legal side of things as they deal with the accident’s aftermath. 

19. Personal Commitments

Your professional obligations are important, and so are your health and overall well-being. It would be best if people did not have to prioritize work commitments, however minor their injuries prove to be. People need to ensure they follow the steps to file a claim within the shortest time possible. 

20. Out of State Injuries

If you sustained injuries outside your state, the administration, bureaucracies, and legal requirements for different jurisdictions could be overwhelming and time-consuming. It’s possible to delay filing a claim as you try to meet the legal requirements for different states. If people get injured outside of California, they should immediately seek assistance from an attorney licensed to practice law in that specific jurisdiction. The attorneys at Law Office of Joseph Richards, P.C. are licensed to advise and practice in California. 

21. The “Minor Injury” Stereotype

There’s apparently a popular notion that personal injury claims should only be filed for catastrophic injuries. If someone convinces you that your injuries are too minor to warrant compensation, you may miss out on receiving the benefits you are legally entitled to. Talk to an attorney and seek advice even if you have been told your injury is minor.

22. Partial Liability

Sometimes people could be partially responsible for the accident that caused their injuries. Still, this should not deter people from pursuing the available legal options they qualify for. In addition, California is a comparative negligence state meaning they can potentially be awarded compensation depending on their degree of responsibility. 

23. Fear of Damaged Relationships

If the injury was caused by a family member, friend, or someone people know personally, bringing a case against them can be challenging. Naturally, people hesitate to compromise the relationship and may choose not to file the claim. You should contact an attorney to advise on the best cause of action when you know the tortfeasor personally. 

24. Fear of a Court Battle 

The idea of going to trial scares many people out of filing an injury claim. Depending on the circumstances of the injury, your case may attract some publicity. However, some risks are worth taking since delaying a claim may block the chances of accessing adequate healthcare, further jeopardizing a person’s health and future. Again, only a relatively small percentage of cases actually go to a final decision by a court after a trial.

25. Lack of Legal Options 

Choosing the right attorney to represent you can be challenging. You probably want to seek guidance from a reputable professional with proven success stories and proficiency in handling similar cases. You want to speak to a licensed attorney to give your potential claims the best chance at being successful so that you have the best plan in place to recover all damages to which you may be entitled. 

Contact Our Personal Injury Attorney In Orange County

Are you a resident of Orange County or the Inland Empire? Do you have a personal injury case you don’t know how to handle? Whether or not you’re partially responsible for the injuries, you are welcome to schedule an appointment for a free consultation to discuss legal representation and potential reimbursement for any damages you might have a right to recover. 

Contact Our Orange County personal injury attorneys today, and we may be able to advise you on the right steps. Please fill out our online form or call (888)883-6588 for a no-obligation free consultation.