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Posted in Car accident on January 27, 2020
West Virginia is a fault-based insurance state. Tort laws state that the injured party must identify the party at fault for the collision before bringing a claim. It will be the at-fault party’s responsibility to pay for the victim’s damages. Unfortunately, drivers who cause accidents are not always honest about what happened. At-fault drivers may lie to insurance companies or intentionally misrepresent facts to avoid their insurance premiums going up. As a crash victim, this could hurt your chances of receiving fair compensation for your losses.
The best way to prevent an insurance company from believing the other driver’s false version of events is to gather evidence proving the contrary. Ideally, you would have called the police from the scene of the crash to obtain an official police report. A police officer can describe what he or she saw, including the officer’s professional opinion about who is to blame. A police report can include official photographs and other evidence that may serve your interests, such as the results of a Breathalyzer test or statements from witnesses. Keep a copy of your police report and other documents handy to serve as proof during your insurance claim.
Create a folder with all important crash-related documentation inside. You can use the documents, reports and evidence you gather to prove your version of events is the truth – not the lying driver’s. A crash record or police report could be enough to convince the at-fault driver’s insurance company that its client caused your accident despite his or her claims that state otherwise.
When discussing your auto accident with the police, insurance companies, attorneys, witnesses, doctors and other parties, stick to the facts. Keep only to what you know to be true, rather than guessing as to causation or fault. Being honest from the beginning can help you keep your story straight and remain consistent. Meanwhile, if the at-fault driver is lying, he or she will most likely slip up. The other driver may change his or her story or be inconsistent with the details – pointing to unreliability and revealing falsehoods. Proving yourself as a reliable witness could sway insurance companies in your favor.
It is important to realize that a car insurance company’s decision to deny your claim is never permanent. You have the power to appeal the decision and achieve different results. Denial is not final – especially if you know the other driver is lying about what happened. Hire an injury attorney to help you file an appeal of the insurer’s decision. Your appeal should state why you believe the insurance company came to the wrong conclusion, along with evidence supporting your case.
Remain calm if you find out the at-fault driver is lying about your car accident to insurance companies. Reacting poorly, especially while still at the scene of the accident, could turn the police and insurance companies against both of you. You have rights and options in the face of a dishonest defendant. Stay calm and contact a car accident lawyer in West Virginia for help with a driver who is not telling the truth.
A lawyer can walk you through the steps to take toward obtaining financial relief, including collecting copies of police reports or filing an insurance decision appeal. Your attorney can help you gather evidence disputing the other driver’s version of events. A lawyer could also hire crash experts to help prove how the collision occurred and which driver’s assertions must be true. If the other driver’s insurance company disputes liability, your lawyer can take your case to court for a judge or jury to decide the truth. Contact an attorney in West Virginia today to learn more about your legal options.