How Your Driving Record May Affect Your Injury Claim
Your driving record is an important piece of information that may be used to determine the cost of auto insurance. If you have a history of traffic citations or accidents, this information may also be used by another driver’s insurance company to deny or devalue your claim for damages from a car crash.
If you were involved in an accident caused by someone else and the liability insurance is requesting copies of your driving record, you may want to speak to one of our car accident lawyers in Charleston as soon as possible. Our attorneys are prepared to fight back against insurers who try to pin the blame for an accident on injury victims with past accidents on their record.
Below, we discuss how insurers often try to use an injury victim’s driving record to deny or devalue claims.
When Should I Disclose My Driving Record?
It is always a good idea to disclose any information that may be relevant to your case to your attorney as soon as possible. This way, your attorney may be prepared for any information the liable insurance company may dig up on you. You would not want your attorney to be caught off guard by something on your driving record and not have a counterargument prepared in your defense.
Remember that your attorney is legally bound to keep most communications between you confidential as part of the attorney-client privilege. This allows attorneys to get a better understanding of a claim with all the facts to build a strong case for compensation.
Will I Be Obligated to Disclose the Information?
Whether you will be legally obligated to disclose your driving record depends on what stage your claim is in. If you are still trying to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company, you may not be obligated to disclose any information unrelated to this crash and your current injuries.
However, if you have filed a lawsuit seeking compensation for your damages, you may be required to disclose your driving record, and other information, during the discovery process. Our attorneys are prepared to help you through the process of answering interrogatories and depositions.
How Will My Driving Record Affect My Claim?
If you have been driving for a long time, there is a chance you have been involved in at least one accident in your life, or at the very least been issued a ticket for some sort of traffic infraction.
The insurance company will try to argue that the injuries for which you are filing a claim were a result of a prior accident on your record and therefore, they should not be financially liable. While it may be more difficult to prove a case with preexisting injuries from a prior accident, it is not impossible. Due to the eggshell skull rule, crash victims whose injuries are aggravated by a new accident may still be able to recover full compensation.
Additionally, the insurer may try to claim that prior accidents you caused or traffic tickets on your record are proof that you have a history of negligent driving. They will try to use that argument to blame you for the accident, at least in part.
Other more serious blemishes on your driving record, such as a DUI arrest or driving with a suspended license, may be more difficult to argue against, but you have the right to pursue compensation for an accident caused by someone else’s negligence. Our attorneys are prepared to review every legal option available to you and are prepared to build a strong case to help you recover the compensation you need.
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Just as your driving record may be used against you to increase your auto insurance premium, it may also be used against you to decrease the value of an injury claim. That is why it is important to have an experienced attorney on your side who may be able to help you fight back against the insurance company.
With many years of combined experience helping injury victims and a proven track record of success, our attorneys are ready to help you pursue the compensation you need for your medical bills, lost wages and other damages.