Get to grips with your personal injury claim and learn what a lawyer does for you.
When you are injured through an accident that was not your fault, things can quickly become overwhelming. From medical bills to expenses garnered travelling back and forward to appointments: you are entitled to compensation for all of it.
However, when you do choose to pursue that personal injury lawsuit, it can be so confusing that you do not know where to turn. In this tough time, you need to buckle down and get the best possible team in your corner. This means hiring a personal injury lawyer for you, exactly when you need it.
What are the other basics of a personal injury claim? We found out in advance…
The Basics of Personal Injury
Let us run through each of the small points of personal injury claims and why each step is important.
Hiring an Attorney
You can find any number of lawyers capable of representing your personal injury lawsuit – but how do you find one that you trust? DDRB Lawyers have an excellent reputation in this department – but why do you need a lawyer in the first place? Can you represent yourself in a personal injury claim? The answer is a resounding no.
Hiring an attorney is not really an optional thing. If you research, go to court, and try and defend yourself, you will end up with nothing. This is not about politics or how much you know, it is about a lawyer’s business. Think about it. They represent people just like you, every day of the week. This makes them ideally placed to administer better representation than you can get for yourself.
Besides anything else, we hire an attorney during personal injury claims because sometimes, you are injured beyond being able to represent yourself. If you are in a coma, or otherwise incapacitated, your personal injury lawyer acts as your voice to ensure nobody takes advantage of you.
Sure, you might be able to represent yourself… but why would you invite that kind of stress into your life when you are already suffering?
Getting to the Doctor
Apart from getting an attorney, you need to start getting a case together. To make this happen, you need to visit a doctor for a record of our injuries. This is especially important if your personal injury happened as the result of an accident. A trip to the ER will place a time and date of your injuries and allow a point from which you can get treatment. That initial visit is helpful in proving what happened to you and when it first occurred. Without it, your case will be flimsy at best.
Reporting the Incident
When you are injured severely and it is not your fault, this is because someone has been negligent. If you are on a construction site and something falls on you, you need to visit the ER and report the building site to your local government office. If you are hit by a car, the police need to be involved. If you are in a fire, the fire brigade, and so on.
The point is that you need to report your incident to have the best chance at a successful personal injury claim. Not reporting the accident means there is no legal record of it happening. You cannot prove that you were injured if there is no record of the accident… So, make sure the authorities are involved.
Now that we have covered why the attorney should be the first step, we can move on to gathering the evidence that will help your case. Providing you did not skip step one; this step should be easy. Your attorney will help you in evidence gathering and in advising you on what documentation you should need.
Some common evidence gathering steps are as follows:
- Taking photographs of the area where the accident happened. You should carefully note where any items of furniture or debris are, as well as photographing any scuff marks on the floor and the position of the accident.
- Keep a journal of your injuries and recovery, this is an evidence gathering tool which ensures you do not forget to report any of your symptoms to your medical professionals. Your personal injury attorney can also use it to keep track of your injuries.
- Take witness statements wherever you can. If possible, retrieve phone numbers and statements from all those who saw what happened. Look for stores which would have been open when the accident happened and ask staff members if they saw you that day.
- Write out your own memories of what happened that day. Writing it down will help you stick to the same story if you are cross-examined.
Why Gather Evidence?
Why do we bother doing all of this? To give ourselves a stronger case. The opposition in any given personal injury lawsuit, is there on behalf of your insurance company. The whole aim of them being present is to try and prove that you are lying. They will try to defame you, so try to avoid the following things…
- Do not talk to anyone (who is not your attorney) about your case.
- This means no posting about your injuries on social media.
- It means staying off work for as long as it takes to make a complete recovery.
- Do not lie – if you say you are wheelchair bound, they will be watching you.
- Stay home if you are too sick to go out. You may be followed by a Private Investigator to ensure you are as sick as you say you are.
Once the pitfalls of personal injury lawsuits have been avoided, you will be free to leave the matter in your lawyer’s hands until the date is set to go before the judge.
Further things to Remember about Personal Injury Claims
Remember to account all your damages and keep all receipts. You will not have to go before a jury, but you will have your case heard by a judge. Most importantly, listen to your lawyer and do exactly as they tell you. They may be the best chance you have at getting compensation.