Not everything in life goes according to plan the way we hope that it will. Sometimes, accidents happen when you least expect them to, and you have to handle them in the moment. When it comes to your personal health and physical safety, there is no such thing as over-preparedness. If you are involved in a car accident or other type of situation that harms you physically, there is a chance you may be owed some sort of compensation to help cover any drastic interruption to your life.
To set yourself up for whatever life will throw at you, it helps to have a thorough understanding of the steps involved in filing a personal injury claim. Many of the important aspects of a personal injury claim take place immediately following an accident. With so much going on in the heat of the moment, it can be easy to neglect some steps. However, if you focus on these simple steps, you’ll make your life easier as you seek justice for your personal injury and get on with your life.
Take Pictures of the Accident
When it comes to legal matters, no one wants to get caught up in a game of “he said, she said.” If there were vehicles involved, it is paramount that you take pictures of the scene. If you do not have a camera or smartphone handy, see if you can borrow one from someone nearby.
Snap as many photos as possible of the vehicles from different angles, so that any damage to the vehicle is visible. Also take pictures of the surrounding area. If you have scrapes, bruises, or other visible damage to your body, take pictures of that as well. Having photographic evidence of a scene and the immediate injury after an accident can make or break a legal case.
Gather Information from Involved Parties
Before leaving the scene of an accident, it is key to collect any and all personal and insurance information from the other person involved in an accident. Take a picture or write down the license plate number of any involved vehicles and ask for ID and insurance information from the person.
If there are witnesses around, get their contact information as well. Ask if they would be comfortable providing witness testimony in your defense if you decide to file a claim. If police are on the scene, ensure a police report is written. If you do not believe a report will be written or do not think it will be documented accurately, record the name and badge number of the officer on the scene.
The Next Steps
With any injury, seek out immediate medical attention. Even if the injuries do not seem urgent, it is still important for you to go to the doctor for a medical examination. This is time-sensitive. The longer you wait after an accident, the less likely any injuries that you develop will be linked to the accident itself.
In a personal injury claim, this medical examination is paramount. Many claims of citizens in Tampa and other major cities have been glossed over because they lost validity due to lack of medical support to back them up. Don’t let this happen to you! Be proactive and seek a medical examination soon after an incident.
As medical bills and other related expenses arise, make sure you keep track of these documents. That way, when you seek assistance from a personal injury attorney, you can hand all the necessary information over from one consolidated place.
These few steps can save you time and frustration and will help ensure you receive the monetary compensation you deserve.