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5 Misconceptions About St. Louis Car Accident Claims

Understanding these common misconceptions about St. Louis car accident claims ensures you don’t undermine your rights or settlement.


Navigating the aftermath of a car accident can be complex and stressful, especially when it involves filing an insurance claim in St. Louis. Misinformation and misconceptions can further complicate the process, leading to unnecessary challenges and potentially affecting the outcome of your claim. To help you better understand the landscape, here are five common misconceptions about St. Louis car accident claims.

1. The Police Report Always Determines Fault

One common belief is that the police report is the final word on who is at fault in an accident. While it’s true that a police report is an important piece of evidence and can significantly influence the insurance companies’ decisions, it’s not the sole determinant of fault. Insurance companies conduct their own investigations, considering additional evidence such as witness statements, traffic laws relevant to the accident scene, and physical evidence from the vehicles involved. Whether you agree with the police report’s findings or not, it’s crucial to gather evidence and consult with a St. Louis car accident attorney to present your case effectively.

2. If You’re Not Hurt Right Away, You Can’t Claim Injuries That Appear Later

Many individuals believe that if they don’t feel injured immediately following an accident, they can’t claim injuries later on. This misconception can prevent people from seeking the compensation they deserve. Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal trauma, might not manifest symptoms until hours or even days after the accident. It’s essential to seek medical attention immediately after an accident, even if you feel fine, and to keep detailed records of any symptoms that develop later, as these can be pivotal in your injury claim.

3. You Can Only Claim Compensation for Physical Injuries

Another widespread misconception is that compensation is only available for physical injuries. In reality, car accident claims can also cover emotional and psychological trauma, such as anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) stemming from the accident. Missouri law allows for the recovery of non-economic damages, which include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life, among other impacts.

4. Hiring a Lawyer Will Take Most of Your Compensation

Many people are hesitant to hire a lawyer due to the belief that legal fees will consume most of their compensation. However, most personal injury attorneys, including those specializing in car accidents in St. Louis, work on a contingency fee basis. This means they only get paid if you win your case, with their fee being a percentage of your settlement or award. An experienced attorney can often negotiate a significantly higher compensation amount, even after accounting for legal fees, than you might obtain on your own.

5. You Must Accept the Insurance Company’s First Offer

Finally, there’s a common belief that the insurance company’s first settlement offer must be accepted and that it’s the best you can get. This is rarely the case. Initial offers are often lowball amounts that insurance companies propose, hoping claimants will accept to quickly resolve the claim. It’s important to remember that you have the right to negotiate and, with the guidance of a skilled attorney, often secure a much more favorable settlement that more accurately reflects the full extent of your damages and losses.

Understanding the realities behind these misconceptions can empower you to navigate the complexities of car accident claims in St. Louis more effectively. If you’ve been involved in a car accident, consulting with an experienced St. Louis car accident attorney can provide you with the guidance and representation needed to achieve a fair resolution to your claim.

Speak With a St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in St. Louis and are navigating the complexities of filing a claim, don’t let misconceptions stand in your way. At The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C., we understand the challenges and uncertainties you may face. With our extensive experience and dedicated approach, we’re here to guide you through every step of the process, ensuring that your rights are protected and you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation, and let us help you move forward from this challenging time with confidence and support.

Free Consultation with a St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer

Don’t talk to an insurance claims adjuster before speaking with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you avoid making statements that may affect the outcome of your case. The consultation is free; you don’t pay unless we get you money!

Free Consultation (314) 361-4242
Updated: April 26, 2024