When you file a personal injury claim, you do with high hopes that the suit will be successful, and that you will get fair compensation for your damages. Even so, not all personal injury claims bring the same expected results. Two cases with the same facts might have dramatically different results. These results come from how the attorneys present the evidence. The success of any litigation solely lies in the presentation of evidence, which proves that the Defendant caused your injuries. And you, as the injured party, can maximize your result (settlement or jury verdict) as early as the day of the incident that caused your injury.
Below are five major ways through which you can maximize your injury settlement after an accident:
Preserve Evidence (Take Photos, Videos, Names)
Proper evidence is the backbone of successful litigation. The jury will act upon the evidence the lawyers present before them. Similarly, your insurance company will act only offer a settlement if only you have substantial evidence to show their client was at fault. The more evidence you have, the easier it is for the insurance company to justify paying you your settlement.
For this reason, you should take photos of your injuries, the accident scene, and the property damage as soon as possible. Additionally, if there are any witnesses to the incident, get their names and phone numbers. Do not simply rely on the police to do everything. Ask the other driver if he recalls what caused the crash, and if he admits that it was his fault, make sure that the police record it in their report.
If You’re Hurt, Seek Immediate Medical Attention
If you are injured from the accident, it is better to get medical treatment sooner rather than later. You’ll want doctors to rule out serious injuries (fractures, brain bleeding), and you may need prescription medication to manage the pain. Additionally, the medical records created from your visit will objectively document your injuries and your complaints on that date. The insurance company will not necessarily believe you if you say that you were in pain at a certain time, but a medical record is hard evidence.
Keep Track of How Your Life Has Changed
Dealing with an injury is difficult in many ways. Your life may be substantially different from before the accident. That’s why it’s adviseable to write down what difficulties you are having in your life. It may interfere with your productivity at work, your ability to play with your children, or your capacity to be intimate with your spouse. It also may affect smaller things: difficulty sleeping or cleaning around the house. Regardless of what’s different, it’s best to keep track and provide this list to your lawyer. Your lawyer will then be able to argue on your behalf for what has been taken from your life.
Do Not Accept the First Offer
Occasionally, an insurance representative will call you immediately after an accident to give you an offer. Immediate compensation is enticing, but it’s advisable to hold off before you’ve had a free consultation with a personal injury attorney. It is possible that the offer is generous and an attorney won’t be able to add value to your case. However, a good personal injury attorney will not take the case unless he/she believes that it will result with you getting more money.
Talk with a personal injury lawyer to see if you should accept the insurance company’s offer.
Build Your Case with Fact Witnesses
You likely know people who knew you before and after the accident. They may be able to tell how the accident has affected you, and what you can’t do anymore. This could be a coworker, a family member, or a friend.
These fact witnesses will be helpful to explain to the jury (or an insurance representative) that your injuries are real and they have affected your life. The more you have, the better.
Most of all, it is important to have a seasoned personal injury attorney with the expertise to tackle the defendant’s insurance company head-on. He/she will ensure that no important piece of evidence is left out, and that you have done everything possible to maximize your personal injury claim. Our experienced lawyers at Lone Star Injury Attorneys have your best interests at heart, and will do everything possible to have your fairly compensated for your loss.
If you are unsure of what step to take in filing your claim, we are here to help. Call our offices today to schedule a free consultation.