Personal injury claims are some of the common types of cases handled by legal professionals. ‘Personal injury’ is an umbrella term covering different kinds of injuries a human could sustain. While each case is unique, a common thread binds them all. Adequate documentation is necessary to build a strong case.
Documentation goes beyond collecting medical reports and witness accounts to establish a personal injury claim. It also includes proof of lost wages, expenses incurred due to treatment, and any other damages from the injury.
If you or a loved one was injured, consult the best personal injury attorneys near you to get started on the restitution process. It is a paperwork-heavy process that requires legal guidance for several factors. The following is an overview of some of the most common types of documents that you should know about. These will become the building blocks for your claim.
1. Collect Evidence at the Scene of the Accident
An individual must collect evidence following a personal injury event as soon as possible. This will involve taking photos or videos documenting what caused the accident. Photos should capture physical damages and smaller details regarding injuries such as bruises or cuts.
2. Gather Medical Reports
You must gather medical reports. These reports provide detailed information about your injuries, how they were sustained, what treatments have been completed or ongoing to alleviate pain experienced, and assess long-term damage. Documentation involving medical records will also illustrate future medical costs required.
3. Witness Statements
Witness statements may be obtained from people present at the scene where an accident occurred, team members who participated in sports events leading up to accidents, or co-workers/support staff within an organization, especially if it happens while on duty.
4. Proof of Lost Income
This occurs when a victim suffers an injury and loses time at work. As a result, it can be accounted for in the restitution claim. This proof includes pay stubs showing salary amounts before and after the accident, among other methods, until re-engagement with work.
5. Calculation of All Expenses
Expenses incurred during recovery may include medical bills paid by insurance companies pushing out-of-pocket payments for follow-up visits, rehabilitation, and full recovery before returning to normal activities. Receipts and the amounts paid in cash during medical treatment provide documentation outlining where fees were incurred.
Keeping track of all documentation related to personal injury claims is critical. This may include photos and videos taken at the scene of an accident and witness statements obtained from witnesses present when it occurred. This could also include medical records documenting injuries. It is advisable to keep a record of all payments after your accident. Until you consult a lawyer and know which documents to get, don’t throw away any receipts, especially if it concerns medical care or medication.
Benefits of Documentation In Personal Injury Claims
1. Clarity on Liability
Good documentation helps establish who could be liable for damages suffered, whether from someone’s negligence or an institution whose actions caused issues like accidents leading up to injury.
2. A Stronger Case For Settlement
Well-documented evidence will assist lawyers by making arguments more compelling about offenders’ liability and who is being held accountable for injuries sustained, allowing judges/juries involved to make fair decisions based on evidence clearly explained.
3. Establish Clear Claim Damages
Documentation can clearly show how an accident has impacted the claimant’s daily life, causing disruption and financial distress. This can be backed up with receipts indicating incurred expenses following medical treatments. Doing so might ensure proper compensation that offers relief post-incident/recovery period.
4. Shows Attention to Detail
Restitution claims often rely on insurers and courts analyzing the claims made by all sides. If the agent finds everything was carefully documented, the organization might not reduce the payout. Doing so would drag the case to trial and likely increase their payout sevenfold. However, if judges find the claim paperwork shoddily prepared, even a strong case will likely face more scrutiny. Hence, the benefits of proper documentation cannot be overstated.