How to Maximize Your Personal Injury Claim
If you have been seriously hurt because of someone else’s negligence, you will want to recover full compensation for the losses you have suffered. The following tips can help you maximize your personal injury compensation.
Collect and Preserve Evidence
You have the burden of proof in a personal injury claim. Preserve as much evidence from the scene of the accident as possible.
- Take pictures of everything, including any visible injuries you sustained. If you were injured in a motor vehicle crash, take multiple pictures of the vehicles involved, showing the damage and their relative positions. Get photos of any skid marks or crash debris on the road, traffic signals or signs, and road signs.
- Get names and contact information for any eyewitnesses to the accident.
- Request copies of footage from video surveillance cameras that may have recorded the incident.
Report All Your Injuries to Your Doctor
See your doctor as soon as possible after an accident and report all your injuries. This is important for several reasons:
- The shock and adrenaline that come with a sudden accident can mask injury symptoms. See a doctor even if you are not feeling pain. Some symptoms can take days, weeks, or even months to appear. Prompt examination and analysis by a qualified medical professional can identify damage that could worsen and result in long-term injury.
- Seeking medical care allows you to present an accurate picture of your injuries and the steps you have taken to treat them. Having medical records to support your claim is key to making a personal injury claim.
- Insurance companies consider how long you took to seek medical attention as a factor in processing claims. If you delay seeking medical attention any longer than 72 hours after the incident, the insurance company may use the delay to try to discredit your claim or diminish its value.
Get a Police Report
Call the police to report the incident after a motor vehicle accident. An officer should arrive on the scene to investigate. Get a copy of the police report when it is available to document what the officer saw and what witnesses said.
Keep Records of All Hospital Visits and Medical Expenses
It is important to keep records of all doctor and hospital visits, all doctors’ notes, physical therapy referrals, diagnostics, treatment plans, prescription or over-the-counter medications, and anything related to medical care for your injuries. Documentation of the treatment you received can make compelling evidence of your injuries and losses. Also keep detailed records of all medical expenses associated with your injuries, including drive time and milage to and from doctor visits.
Attend All Doctor’s Visits
If your doctor recommends a treatment plan for your injuries, follow it carefully and attend all doctors’ visits. If you fail to receive treatment or to comply with your doctor’s orders, the defense can use this as evidence against you. Foregoing medical treatment or failure to follow a doctor-recommended treatment plan can have a negative impact on the value of your claim.
Stay off Social Media
Defense attorneys search social media for any evidence they can use against you. For example, if someone posts a picture that shows you smiling or enjoying yourself, it can be used to discredit your claim for pain and suffering damages. Just stay away and ask your friends and family to leave you alone on social media.
Hire an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Speak with a lawyer as soon as possible after your accident. Do not talk to insurance agents or accept a settlement offer until you have done so. Our Colorado Springs personal injury attorney at The Bussey Law Firm, P.C. can assess the full extent of your losses – past, present, and future – and advise you on how much your claim is worth.
We offer a free consultation. Call us at (719) 475-2555 to find out how we can help.