After a car accident, it can feel like you’re living in a whirlwind. You’ll need ongoing medical care and rehabilitation, but you’ll also have pain and suffering to contend with as well as financial damages caused by your medical expenses and lost wages. An extensive mental toll can be taken, too. As you’re trying to figure out how to deal with all of those losses, it can be tough to figure out your next steps.
A well thought out personal injury lawsuit, if successful, can give you the relief and closure that you need. If you’re like most car accident victims, though, the thought of entering the legal arena is stressful and confusing. You probably don’t even know where to start building your case. That’s why in the remainder of this post we want to look at some concrete steps you can take to start developing your legal arguments.
What can you do to start building your car accident personal injury case?
There are several things you can do now to put yourself in a better position to succeed on a personal injury claim. This includes:
- Seeking the treatment you need: Ultimately, your personal injury case is about finding accountability and recovering the compensation you need and deserve. If you forego needed medical treatment, then you shortchange yourself in your recovery, as you won’t have evidence to support requesting the compensation that you might actually need. So, seek immediate treatment after your accident, follow your doctor’s recommendations, and avoid trying to tough it out on your own or minimizing your injuries.
- Documenting your losses: Again, you’ll need evidence to prove your damages. Retaining your medical bills, receipts, and invoices tied to your recovery can be helpful here. You should also consider keeping a journal where you document the daily impact your injuries have had on your life. This will assist you in painting a picture of your noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.
- Considering your actions: Comparative fault may come into play in your case, where your damages might be reduced if you’re found to have contributed to the accident. A finding of comparative fault, then, can quickly eat away at the damages that you hoped to recover. So, before heading into your car accident personal injury case, be sure to replay the events leading up to your wreck so that you can better anticipate the defense’s arguments and how best to counter them.
- Gathering evidence of liability: To prove that the defendant was responsible for your accident and thus your injuries, you’ll need to present compelling evidence. Securing police reports, accident scene photographs, and witness accounts can go a long way. You might also want to consider seeking out experts who can help you establish causation.
- Thinking about settlement: This isn’t to say you should settle your case. In fact, in some instances doing so is not in an accident victim’s best interests. However, given that settlement negotiations are likely to happen in your case, you should think through what you hope to get out of that process so that you have a solid negotiation strategy heading into settlement talks.
Don’t lose your personal injury case due to lack of preparation
Even when a car accident personal injury case seems straightforward, it can be complicated by legal nuances. You don’t want to be taken by surprise during settlement negotiations or at trial, as that could lead to a bad outcome that you want to avoid. To protect your interests as fully as possible, take the time necessary to build the robust case you need.