Truck accidents tend to cause extensive—and oftentimes catastrophic—damage. In fact, it’s not uncommon for victims to incur tens of thousands of dollars in medical bills, lost income, property repairs, and other unexpected costs. In the legal system, these are called special damages, as opposed to damages for pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, etc. Unfortunately, insurers use all kinds of strategies to deny or at least devalue such claims. One of the most common defenses asserted by insurance companies is to argue that the claimant has failed to mitigate their damages. Defendants in these cases are only responsible for covering the losses for which they are liable. If a claimant’s own negligence exacerbates their injuries and increases their damages, the insurance company might refuse to pay for 100 percent of their losses. If you were hurt in a large truck crash, here are a few steps you can take to reduce the likelihood of facing a dispute over the mitigation of damages:
1. Following Medical Advice
It’s not uncommon for doctors to advise injured patients to stay home from work and to limit their physical activity. You should be diligent about following all such orders, so the opposing party is less likely to argue that your own negligence has inhibited your medical recovery. I personally think people respect other people who fight against all odds and try to make the best out of life even if they are severely injured. Always follow your doctor’s orders. But if your doctor permits a type of physical activity, then you are free to try and perform the activity.
2. Arranging for Reasonably Necessary Replacement Services
In Mississippi, personal injury claimants may seek compensation for services like home care, childcare, housekeeping, meal preparation, and alternative transportation—if they are reasonably necessary. I seldom see these types of damages claimed because family members usually perform these services, but there have been cases when a family member could not perform household services and someone had to be paid to do them. I reiterate again to follow your doctor’s advice and your attorney’s advice.
3. Requesting Multiple Quotes for Vehicle and Home Modifications
If you sustained a permanent disability in the accident, you may need to modify your vehicle and remodel your home to accommodate the associated limitations. While the liable party might cover these expenses, the insurer may dispute the cost if it seems unreasonably high. You can reduce the risk of facing such a dispute by requesting quotes from multiple contractors. You should also ask your lawyer if a service is reasonably priced. Your lawyer may even be able to refer you to a reputable service provider.
4. Avoiding Social Media
Although posting on social media wouldn’t constitute a failure to mitigate damages, your posts might be used as evidence to assert this defense. For example, photos of you spending time with friends might be used to argue that you are not following your doctor’s instructions to rest. At Coxwell & Associates, we always tell people to stay off of social media. Once a case is filed, your social media immediately has the potential to be evidence. You are required to retain your social media and not delete electronic information. We all live on social media these days, but when you are in the big injury case, the best move is the smart move and that means no social media.
Call (601) 265-7766 to Discuss Your Case with a Truck Accident Attorney in Jackson
If you were hurt in a large truck crash, contact Coxwell & Associates. We have been representing Mississippians for more than 40 years. Our legal team knows what it takes to win substantial settlements and verdicts in even the most complex cases. We take great pride in helping the injured fight for the compensation they need to move on with life. Call (601) 265-7766 or use our Online Contact Form to set up a free case evaluation with a truck accident lawyer in Jackson