If you’ve been injured in a car accident or some other type of mishap that wasn’t your fault, you could be entitled to compensation. A settlement or award would cover your medical expenses, make up for the time you missed from work, and even compensate you for any pain, suffering, or permanent disability you’ve experienced.
But in order to get the outcome you need and deserve, you have to build a strong case from the beginning. A personal injury attorney will have the expertise to help you mold your evidence into a strong case, but there are steps you can take to make sure that evidence is available to your attorney – and that the other side (or a jury) will take your injuries seriously.
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Gather Evidence from the Scene of the Accident
Gathering evidence from the scene of the accident is a great idea, provided you have the presence of mind to do so. Take pictures and video of the conditions that caused your accident, and of the aftermath of the accident, such as the damage to your car or the position of your and the other side’s cars. Collect the names of witnesses. Get a copy of the police report or, if the accident happened on private property, a copy of the incident report from the property owner. There may be surveillance footage of your accident occurring; your attorney can file a subpoena to get access to that footage.
Get Medical Attention Right Away
It’s absolutely vital to your case that you get medical attention from the EMTs on the scene of the accident or go to the emergency room right away. In the immediate aftermath of the accident, you might not feel like you’ve been injured, but you should seek medical attention anyway. Many injuries, like whiplash, don’t show symptoms for hours or days after they have been sustained, so you may be injured and not realize it.
Seeking medical attention promptly after an accident can help prove to the jury that your injuries were serious. Follow your doctor’s advice. Fill your prescriptions and attend all your follow-up appointments and treatment sessions. Not only will doing so help you recover faster, but it will stand as proof that your injuries were serious and that you took them seriously.
Keep a Journal to Document Your Recovery
Your Lakeland car accident lawyer can help you get compensation for your emotional distress, pain, and suffering in addition to compensation for your financial damages, but you need to have proof of that emotional distress to show the court. Your lawyer will likely advise you to keep a journal of your recovery showing the pain and suffering you endured as a result of your injuries. Document your non-financial damages, such as loss of enjoyment of life, pain, suffering, and emotional distress.
Ask Your Employer for Proof of Lost Wages
Keeping track of your lost wages can help you get compensated fairly for time missed from work. Ask your employer for a document specifying your rate of pay, how much work you missed, and how much you’re owed in missed wages.
Organize and Keep Track of Your Medical Bills
Mounting medical bills can really add to your stress as you attempt to recover from your injuries, especially when you’re not working and able to pay them. Organize and keep track of your medical bills so that your attorney can calculate how much you’re owed in medical costs. A record of your medical bills could make all the difference to winning your case.
Hire a Good Personal Injury Attorney
Of course, the most important thing you can do to win your personal injury case is to hire a good personal injury attorney. Don’t just go with the first attorney you talk to – at least not without talking to several others first. Ask questions about their experience with cases like yours and their track record of litigating cases. Ask the attorney you speak with if he or she will be personally handling your case, or whether most of the work will be done by junior attorneys. Ask for client references and contact your state bar association to make sure any attorney you’re thinking of hiring has a clear record when it comes to complaints and disciplinary actions.
Conclusion: Personal Injury Attorney
Building a personal injury case isn’t easy, and you’re definitely going to need the help of an experienced attorney. Follow your attorney’s advice to collect the evidence you need to strengthen your case, so you can get the compensation you deserve for your injuries and suffering.