A car accident can be a life-altering experience. For some people, it means physical injuries and trauma that may take weeks or months to recover from. For others, it may result in permanent damage to their body, their vehicle, their property, and more.
An accident can also cause you to lose wages at work, lose sleep worrying, and lose a lot of money if you were the person responsible. Regardless of your fault in the incident, it can be very stressful trying to navigate the days and weeks that follow it.
This is why it is critically important to seek legal counsel in the event of an auto accident. If you incurred bills – or caused someone else to – and you cannot pay them, a lawyer can help you figure out what to do.
Here is a crash course in what to do if you are involved in a car accident and can’t pay the bills that might result:
Who you are is important when it comes to moving on after a car accident. No, this isn’t referring to who you are in terms of social status, name, or otherwise. It is about which party you are – the legally responsible party or the one who suffered as a result.
It can be difficult to take the blame for a car accident. Even if you did not do anything wrong, you may still be found legally at fault. Regardless of how you feel about the incident, it is important to identify your legal fault so you can proceed accordingly.
What should you do when you are legally responsible for a car accident and can’t pay bills that result? You have a short to-do list that should precede anything else you do. Your main goals are to ensure that you remit any money owed to the person you had an accident with or the owner of any property you might have damaged, as well as consult with your attorney about how to best protect your assets during this process.
Your first steps should include the following:
Talk to your insurance provider, as well as the insurance carrier for the person or persons you might be beholden to after your accident. You will need to ask whether the damages that resulted from your incident are within the limits of any applicable insurance policies.
Next, talk to your attorney about which assets are exempt from collections, should you be sued for damages that you cannot currently cover. Your lawyer can also help you identify vulnerable assets, as well as create and implement a plan for protecting those assets from collection.
You may also want to submit an affidavit that informs that court that repaying any outstanding debt that is incurred due to your accident would be difficult. This way, your situation is clear from the start, and the other party can move forward accordingly.
Again, it can be very difficult to shoulder the blame for a car accident. Even if you do not feel like it is your fault, you may still be legally liable. Determine who is at fault as soon as possible, so you can prevent undue stress for yourself or the other party.
Many people who are involved in car accidents suffer the consequences of these incidents at no fault of their own. However, they may still be left with extensive medical bills and more, all of which can seriously disrupt their lives.
If you were involved in a car accident and can’t pay bills related to your treatment, you have options for ensuring that those bills are taken care of.
First, you may have enough insurance coverage to take care of your bills. If you do not, you are legally able to sue the other person or persons who were involved in the accident for some or all of the cost of your medical and other bills. This may include the expenses of medical treatment, medication, over-the-counter medical items, lost wages, and much more.
If the person or people involved in your accident have full coverage insurance, that may pay for some or all of these costs for you. If they don’t – or if the costs that you are looking to have covered exceeds the amount of coverage they have – you may be able to sue them personally to cover your expenses.
Always talk to a legal professional to find out what you are entitled to and how to go about getting it.
Regardless of whether you were at fault in the accident you experienced or you are dealing with the fallout from someone else’s actions, communicating effectively with the other party is key. This can be difficult, especially if they are not willing to contribute to this communication. Thankfully, you do not have to call them personally or become great friends to ensure that things are handled properly.
It is more than acceptable to have your counsel contact theirs and communicate solely through official documents. This way, you do not have to worry about hurt feelings, misunderstandings, and miscommunication impeding progress of the resolution of your incident,
As with most things that relate to financial and legal issues, going it alone is never a good idea. Your best bet if you are at all worried about making the right decisions after an accident is to consult a lawyer. They can help guide your steps throughout the process.
At the Van Horn Law Group, we have extensive experience with cases just like yours. We can help you determine what your needs will be after an accident and how best to proceed. Whether you are trying to protect your assets after an unfortunate incident or trying to recover physically and financially after being injured due to someone else’s negligence, you can trust us to hold your hand the entire way. Give us a call today to learn more and get started!
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