Personal Injury Case Checklist
Posted on Thursday, September 15th, 2022 at 2:13 pm
As we go through our days, we expect to live and travel safely. However, this doesn’t always happen. If you’ve been hurt in an accident that was not your fault, you might be entitled to receive financial compensation. You should discuss your case with an experienced personal injury lawyer.
To pursue a personal injury case, you must obtain and compile specific documentation. You should include the following information and evidence in your checklist.
After an accident, you need to seek prompt medical attention. You must follow all doctor’s orders exactly. Keep all medical bills, medical records, doctor’s notes, invoices, and receipts that you receive. This includes results from diagnostics, such as MRIs, CT scans, and X-rays.
If your injury is due to a traffic accident, such as a crash with a car or truck, you should obtain a copy of the police report once it is available. Each police department has its own requirements for requesting accident reports. You may already have an identification number from the law enforcement officer who responded to the accident. You can contact the officer directly, visit the department’s records website, or call the department’s non-emergency phone line. There is typically a fee associated with obtaining a copy of an accident report.
If there were eyewitnesses who saw the accident happen, you should obtain their contact information. Ask them if they are willing to provide an eyewitness statement. In the cases of traffic accidents, this may already be included in the accident report. If your accident occurred in a public place like a store, witnesses might be identified in the store’s accident report.
Surveillance Video and Photos
Compile any photos that you took at the scene of the accident. These may include photos of vehicles involved, any visible injuries, road conditions, and weather conditions. If your accident took place inside a place of business, ask whether there is CCTV footage. If any relevant video is available, obtain a copy of this as well. This may include dashcam video or security camera footage. You may need to request video directly from the owner of the video recording system.
Read more about the best ways to collect evidence at the scene of an accident.
If you have lost income due to the accident and your injuries, you need to document the wages you have lost. Obtain pay stubs and income statements from your employer from the period before the accident. These will establish a baseline of the income you were previously earning.
To learn more about what you need to do to calculate lost wages, read this blog post.
Property Damage Documentation
If there was any damage to your property, such as your vehicle, clothing, cellphone, or laptop, document this as completely as you are able. Get estimates for repairs not yet completed or receipts for repairs previously performed. Keep any photos of property damage even after repairs are complete.
Keep receipts and invoices for any other costs you incur because of your injuries. These may include travel costs, chiropractic care, therapy, and rental cars.
By maintaining a daily pain journal, you can document your recovery progress. You will also establish a record of the suffering you experience and how your injury impacts your daily life. Be as specific as possible, including listing all your symptoms and the amount of pain you experience on a scale of one to ten each day.
Read this blog post to get tips on how to best document your pain and suffering following an accident.
How to Get a Lawyer to Take Your Case
When you meet with a lawyer, they will evaluate various details of your situation to determine whether your case is a fit for them. Based on their experience, they will be looking for certain elements of what makes a strong case.
Be open and honest when you speak with an attorney. An experienced lawyer has worked on many previous cases. During this time, they’ve gotten a feel for how potential clients generally communicate with them and what this may mean. They will likely have a sense of whether there may be inconsistencies. By being open, you will help your attorney understand the details of your case as you know them.
Tell the attorney what happened. Be direct. Think this through before going to the lawyer’s office, and make notes for yourself so you leave nothing out if you get nervous. Present all the information you’ve gathered so the lawyer will know what else they need to obtain to strengthen your case.
An attorney will also need to know if you believe you may be partially at fault for the accident. If you are not more than 50% at fault, you might still be able to receive compensation. Texas has a modified comparative negligence doctrine. This means that if you are partially to blame, then you would receive compensation reduced by your proportionate share of fault.
Contact Portner Bond, PLLC Today
If you’ve been injured in an accident in Texas that was caused by someone else, you may be entitled to compensation. You should discuss your case with an experienced Texas personal injury lawyer as soon as you are able.