Is there anything covid-19 hasn’t affected? Find out how coronavirus could affect your accident claim and what you can do about it.
You’ve probably experienced the utter lack of toilet paper on store shelves. Who’d have thought that would be such a huge problem?
Covid-19 has caused much more serious and far-reaching effects than a shortage of toilet paper – including the deaths of more than 170,000 Americans.
How could it cause issues with a car accident lawsuit if you have one?
No one knows for sure because we’re going through a completely new situation here.
You may run into all or some of the issues below:
Delays in Your Case’s Processing
Most car accident claims settle before court. That’s as easy as phone calls and letters between your lawyer and the defendant’s insurance company.
Because everyone’s adjusting to life with coronavirus, expect longer times to resolve your claim.
However, the world must still go around. So, your case will resolve. Just expect it to take longer.
And, expect even longer times if your claim actually ends up going to court. Texas courts have said they will only hear “essential” cases until May 9th.
That could be longer, depending on the extent of disruption covid-19 is causing at the time.
By the way, civil suits of any kind, including car accident claims, are not considered “essential.”
You May Have a Harder Time with Medical Treatment
To maximize the value of your claim and give yourself the best shot of winning, you need to get medical treatment.
You may be afraid to go to your medical appointments because you don’t want to contract covid-19.
Coronavirus could also clog up the healthcare system, which could mean you experience significant delays in receiving treatment.
If you can’t get treatment like you should initially, be persistent. It’s critical to winning your claim and the most compensation possible.
Texas courts won’t see the coronavirus pandemic as a valid reason for not having the medical treatment you need to recover from your injuries.
Also, understand that your case can’t be settled outside or inside court until your treatment is nearly or completely finished. You absolutely need that evidence to move your claim forward.
Emergency Personnel May Not Come to Your Accident Scene
Now, you will most likely get emergency assistance if you have a severe car accident that causes serious injuries.
However, police and emergency personnel across the country are re-prioritizing how they respond to various crises.
If you have a relatively minor car accident with only some damage to your vehicle, police may not come.
In that case, you can still go to a police station and file a report. And you can still hold the at-fault driver responsible for the damages they caused you.
If you gather evidence like you should, however, you should get the same legal outcome you would have if coronavirus wasn’t a problem.
File Your Claim Just Like You Would in Normal Circumstances
The truth is that Covid-19 shouldn’t cause any major disruptions to your car accident case.
You’ll have delays and minor headaches. But that’s probably about it.
So, as soon as you get in an accident that requires a personal injury lawyer’s help, make sure you find one you trust and file your claim so you don’t struggle making ends meet while you recover.
Shane V. Mullen is an attorney licensed by the State of Texas for the general practice of law, and the Managing Partner at Mullen & Mullen Law Firm in Dallas, TX. His firm focuses exclusively on personal injury law and has been in business for 40 years (since 1983). Before becoming a lawyer, Shane worked for his father as an accident injury claims investigator.