When it comes to a personal injury claim, many people have a basic idea of what to do, but oftentimes many specifics are forgotten or outright discarded. This can be dangerous for you as your whole case can become void in certain circumstances. Therefore, it is incredibly important that you know what to do should you find yourself in a position to make a personal injury claim. In a way your future depends on it because your financial situation might become heavily impacted by the injury. Here are some of the do’s and don’t of a personal injury claim.
DO: Hire an Attorney
If you find yourself in a position where you are hurt and have to seek compensation, one of the first things that you should be doing is contacting an attorney. An attorney at Jackson, MS Personal Injury Lawyers mentions that hiring an attorney not only greatly increases your chances of winning the case, but also can greatly increase the amount of compensation that you get if you win. A common fear people have when it comes to attorneys is that they can be rather expensive.
While they can be pricey, in most situations, an attorney only gets paid if they can successfully get you the money that you are fighting for. Wouldn’t you rather give up some of your earnings than sit there and lose a court case? Attorneys will put you in the best possible position through their expertise and skills. The other benefit to hiring an attorney is that they will put the entire case together, giving you time to rest up, relax, and recuperate. If you find yourself in a situation where you need to file a personal injury claim, please don’t hesitate to hire an attorney.
DON’T: Leave the Scene of the Injury
If you have been injured, it is extremely important that you stay at the scene till you are given permission to leave. If you find yourself in a car accident where police are notified, it is actually a criminal charge for you to leave beforehand. Leaving the scene will also greatly hurt your chances of winning your personal injury claim and might even void it entirely. If you are seriously injured, emergency medical care will be sent and you will be attended to. The worst thing for you to do in a situation like that is an attempt to leave.
DO: Collect Information
When the injury happens, if you are in a state where you can collect information from other people at the scene, it is encouraged that you do so. If it is a work-related injury, getting the information and testimony of any workers who witnessed the accident can greatly bolster your case and put you in a much better position to win.
If it is a car accident, you need to get the information of the other driver. This means getting their contact information, driver’s license number, insurance information and more. The more information you can get at the scene of the accident, the better your chances will be and the easier it will be for your lawyer as well.
DON’T: Admit Guilt or Apologize
One of the biggest mistakes people make when they are involved in a personal injury claim is admit some form of guilt or apologize. This is most common in car accidents where one driver will by reflex apologize for something that was not their fault in any way. As soon as you have spoken those words, the other driver can use that to say that you have admitted fault for the accident. While this doesn’t close a case, it does put yourself in a position where you are at a disadvantage.
When you find yourself injured, simply do not say anything regarding the incident and instead ask for medical care. Admitting guilt or apologizing will put you in an uphill battle and will make things quite difficult for your lawyer moving forward.
DO: Call and Cooperate with the Police
Even if you find that you were the cause of a car accident, you have to ensure that you are calling the police and 911 to come to the scene. Why is this important? A police report might show up showing that you were not entirely at fault or might state that there was negligence on behalf of the other driver. Police will gather evidence at the scene and this can also be accessed by your lawyer during the trial.
When you do activate 911, we highly recommend that you cooperate with the police during the investigation. Even if they are blaming you for the incident, just remain calm through it all and be ready to call an attorney. You could also find yourself facing charges if you fail to cooperate with them. This means do not attempt to hide any evidence or change anything at the scene. You will be charged with obstruction of justice in this kind of circumstance and your case might even be thrown out.
DON’T: Discuss the Incident With Anyone
As humans, it is normal for us to want to talk about major issues in our lives. The one issue with talking about an injury incident is that often we remember things differently and recite the details differently each time. This is normally not on purpose, but these story changes can have devastating effects on your court case, especially if you were speaking to insurance. If you have been in an accident, a lawyer will recommend that you do not talk about it at all till everything has been settled. This will make it so you don’t say anything accidentally that can harm your case. You’d be surprised at what a few words can do.
These are just a few of the do’s and don’ts of a personal injury claim. Hiring an attorney is the most important thing that you can do for yourself as it will give you the best chance to win. Once you have done that, focus on resting up and recovering so you can get your life back to normal as soon as possible. What do you plan on doing if you find yourself in a personal injury claim situation?