Why Time Is Important When Making An Accident Claim, But Not Of The Essence

 By: Sarah Shore
Many people believe that a claim must be made as quickly as possible after an accident if their accident claim is to be successful. But actually, this is not necessarily the case.

The reasoning behind a frantic claim is that injuries usually heal, and the best evidence to provide is a cast or brace or some supporting medical state. But all accident solicitors who are well versed in the world of injury claims know that a cast or brace is unlikely to sway a judge, should the case go to court, or even concern opposing solicitors who are more likely to see such a sight as a cheap tactic borrowed from a third rate Hollywood movie. In fact, in all cases where the injured party is making a claim, either for work accident, personal injury or car accident compensation, the evidence that matters is already contained in medical reports.

There are a number of reasons why a rushed case is highly unadvisable, as any solicitor will explain.

Firstly, a rushed case can hardly be well prepared, leaving the claim vulnerable to defeat. Secondly, there can be some suspicion as to why the claimant is hurrying. And thirdly, and most importantly, the full effects of the injuries might not yet be known.

In most cases, a claim never actually makes it to court, with insurance companies usually reaching a settlement. But even so, the proper procedures need to be made, with evidence and details gathered to ensure that insurers can be held accountable. In this sense, time is important because witnesses, for example, will need to provide statements before their memories begin to get foggy. However, the fact remains that time is required to build the case and have everything necessary to make a claim.

With regards the full effects of injuries, there is always a chance that a seemingly minor injury may in fact cause longer term problems, not detectable immediately following an accident. For example, a broken ankle might seem to a straight forward injury, but the the manner of that injury might actually hide more serious back injuries.

When it comes to time, the chief concern is the length that a claimant might wait before making one. There is a maximum waiting period of three years, either from the time of the accident or from the time the entitlement to a claim became clear. Should an injury be suffered by a child, then the three year period begins from the date that the child turns 18 years old.

The reason for this period relates to the progression of minor injuries, which may seem non debilitating at the time but which may lead to bigger problems later on. This time period relates to almost every situation, though a maximum window of two years exists for criminal assault claims. What this means is that there is no need to rush into a decision to take action, therefore contradicting the theory that time is of the essence. Still, it is important not to leave matters lingering, and as soon as a claim is believed possible, legal advice should be sought out.

Remember that the longer that a claim is left, the more difficult it can be to be successful. But there are circumstances where the time limit is overlooked. This is where disease or ill health is a factor rather than an injury, especially in the area of industrial accidents at work. In this case, the accident claim rests on the fact that a toxic substance is responsible for the condition.

However, the effect a chemical substance has on a person cannot be seen soon after an accident. It can take years for the full extent to be seen, such as with the development of cancer or blood conditions. Once a direct link has been proven medically, then the entitlement to compensation is clear and the true value of the compensation to be claimed can be calculated.

When seeking car accident compensation, time does play an influential part but it is worth noting that the best accident solicitors will bide their time wisely in order to get the necessary evidence together before proceeding. In the long run, it can prove to be the most rewarding decision.
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