What Documents Do I Need for My Personal Injury Case?
If you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, it will be up to you to prove that the other party was at fault. In order to do this, you will need various documents to help you win your case. These documents include accident reports, medical bills, and proof of your lost wages.
This process will be easier for you if you hire an experienced personal injury attorney to assist you. They can gather these necessary documents on your behalf so you can focus on your recovery.
Below is a summary of all the most pertinent documents you will need to help prove your case.
When you have been in an accident, especially when someone else was at fault, you should always contact the police, who will write up an official police accident report. This report contains crucial information including:
- Who was responsible for the accident
- Details of specifically what happened
- Whether there were witnesses and what they saw
- Whether there were any reported injuries
Similarly, if you were injured at a residence in something like a slip-and-fall accident, you can call the police who will write an incident report. If you were injured on a business’s premises, be sure to report your injury to the property owner or manager and complete a written report of the incident. Keep a copy for your records.
You will need to get all of your medical records pertaining to treatment stemming from the accident. Such documentation may include hospital visits or procedures, doctor visits and follow-ups, x-rays and other imaging, physical therapy or chiropractic care, and even prescriptions.
All of this information is in a patient’s file where they were treated. As a patient, you have a right to obtain this information, especially if it’s needed for litigation. This information is vital because it provides evidence of the extent of your injuries. You may need to fill out paperwork to obtain the medical records and there may also be a fee. An experienced attorney will know exactly how to proceed.
Records of Lost Wages
Often, when someone is injured because of someone else’s negligence, their injuries will cause them to miss time from work. The injuries could be severe and render someone disabled so they are unable to work at all. Or the injuries could be temporary but still cause someone to miss work in the short term.
You may need to request a lost wage report from your employer that will help show the hours and wages missed as a result of your injuries. Statements from your doctor proving you were unable to work will also bolster your case.
If there were witnesses to your accident, and you are physically able to do so at the scene, you should attempt to get their names and contact information. What they saw could be critical to proving your case later on. Your attorney may also ask them for a written or recorded statement of their version of what happened. Sometimes the official police accident or incident report will mention whether there were any witnesses.
It is important to document and save all of the receipts for accident-related expenses that you have incurred. This can be anything from at-home care if you were disabled to the co-pays for doctor visits and physical therapy or the cost of crutches or a neck brace if they weren’t covered by health insurance.
The policy limits and other terms of both your and the other party’s insurance policies are critical information when you are pursuing a personal injury case. This helps determine the extent of compensation that may be available to pay for your claim.
With the prevalence of cell phone cameras, it’s easier now than ever before to take immediate photos of an accident scene. This can include damage to the vehicles, as well as anything that may have been a factor in your accident, such as icy pavement, a wet floor, obstructed road signs, or a missing side mirror on a truck. If you have visible injuries, you should also take a photo of them.
It is also a good idea to save the photos digitally as well to have them printed on quality paper with the date and who took the photo written on the back. Do not attempt to alter the photos in any way. A photoshopped picture is a surefire way to sink your credibility and your personal injury claim.
How An Attorney Can Help
If you have been injured in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence, you should contact an experienced Dallas personal injury attorney with The Benton Law Firm and (214) 777-7777. Our team can review your case, assist you in obtaining all of the aforementioned documents, and help you seek the compensation that you deserve.