What Should You Do If You Are The Victim Of An Accident?
1. Do not provide information about what happened to bystanders. Try to remain as composed as possible at the scene of an accident. If you do not know what happened, do not speak with bystanders about how it may have occurred. Talking about the incident in the immediate aftermath may cause unnecessary confusion. Wait for law enforcement and other first responders to arrive. Allow them to gather the necessary evidence and put the facts together. It is not helpful for you to discuss what happened otherwise. As your personal injury attorney, my primary job is to make sure your story is told and the facts are presented so that you get the justice you deserve.
2. Seek medical attention. Even if you believe it is not a serious injury, you should seek out professional medical care. If you have experienced an internal injury, matters could become worse over time. If you do not seek medical care after your accident, the settlement will often be reduced, and in many cases by a significant amount.
3. Contact law enforcement and file a report. The outcome of your case can be negatively affected if you do not take the proper steps and call the police. A police report is important because it serves as an unbiased record made shortly after the incident of what happened. Law enforcement will speak with everyone necessary, including witnesses who may otherwise be unknown to you. Failure to take this step can make your case much more difficult to prove and is often a costly mistake.
4. Keep records of all costs and expenses, and of your overall recovery. Record every expense. This not only includes any medical treatment, but also other expenses you have experienced because of the incident. This information often creates the baseline of your claim. Record any lost time at work. All this is very valuable to ensure you get the best settlement. Keep records of your recovery. A simple journal will allow you to document how much pain you are experiencing from day to day and will be useful to chart the progression of your recovery when presented to the insurance provider.
5. Do not sign anything unless a professional has told you to. When an insurance company tells you “we need you to sign this form, it’s just a formality” what they are trying to do is get you to agree to settle your case in a way that is favorable to them without you knowing. Usually, they are trying to trick you into agreeing to mediation. Never sign anything unless someone who is representing your interests has reviewed it.
6. Do not try to settle the case on your own. Insurance providers have lawyers on their side, and so should you. Never forget, from the insurance provider’s perspective, the less you recover the better. I’m here to make sure you have the best opportunity to recover the settlement you deserve.
Call me if you were the victim for any of the following:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Boating/watercraft accidents
- Tractor-trailer accidents
- Slip and fall
Don’t get stuck with a financial mess you did not create. There are many sources of loss, which may be recovered for:
- Medical expenses — present and future
- Loss of wages — present and future
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage