Take These Steps After an Accident in Order to Prepare for a Future Lawsuit
The period immediately after a car accident can be complicated and confusing. You may be dealing with pain, shock, and trauma. You may not know what to do or how to do it. In this case, we recommend talking to a personal injury attorney who can advise you on how best to move forward. In the meantime, you can read these steps that you are likely to need to take.
Keep Records of Everything You See at the Scene
Take pictures of your vehicle and every other involved vehicle if you were involved in a car accident. If the accident in question was a slip and fall accident, take pictures of the spill or other cause of your fall, as well as signs warning of the spill. No matter the type of accident, write down when it happened, where it happened, and contact information for anyone who saw it or was involved.
Get Seen by a Doctor and Follow All of Their Directions
Even if you do not believe you have suffered a catastrophic injury, it is important to visit the doctor, emergency room, or urgent care clinic. Injuries may not be obvious right away, but the sooner you are evaluated the better your treatment is likely to be. It is also important for your personal injury case that you have documentation of your case.
You must also follow the doctor’s instructions to the letter. Why? Because if you start feeling better and decide that their care instructions are no longer needed, the insurance company that should be offering you a settlement may use this evidence that your injury was not as serious as you made it out to be, or that your injury would have been less serious if you had not missed future doctor’s appointments or stopped following their instructions.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Most personal injury cases involve an insurance company. You do not want to wait too long to file your claim with them. We do recommend that you hire an attorney first because the insurance company’s priorities are very different from yours. Remember that there is a statute of limitations and you do not have forever to file.
Keep a Journal
In this day and age of online bills, it is fairly easy to document your financial losses. What can be harder to prove are your noneconomic losses such as pain and suffering. It can help your case to have a journal in which you discuss how your injuries feel on a daily basis and how they affect your life. Do not lie or exaggerate, but keep an honest assessment of the impact the accident has had on you.
You can call your personal injury attorney at any point in this process though we recommend sooner rather than later.