Suffering an injury in an accident is both painful and stressful. You might require significant medical attention, which can result in overwhelming bills. Your injuries could also prevent you from working, as well as participating in the activities you enjoy.
Filing a personal injury claim is one way to help deal with many of the stresses that injuries force you to endure. A successful claim can allow you to recover compensation for losses such as medical bills, lost wages due to missed time at work, and even the pain and suffering you have experienced due to the accident.
A successful claim depends on evidence demonstrating the extent of your injuries and proving that the other party is to blame for them. Below is a personal injury case checklist that will help you gather what you need to make your case as strong as possible.
Detailed medical records are key in helping your legal team determine the seriousness of your injuries. They will also be able to show the insurance company or the court whether you might have suffered disabilities that have prevented you from working. Specifically, you’ll want to gather:
- Records of visits to the emergency room, your doctor’s office, specialists’ appointments, and surgical procedures
- Doctor’s assessments and prognosis of your injuries
- Diagnostic test results
- Images from scans such as x-rays, MRIs, or CTs
Your medical bills will help your lawyer understand how much you have been spending on healthcare relating to your injury. These documents are key to calculating a fair amount of compensation for your injuries. You’ll want to include:
- Ambulance bills
- Emergency room bills
- Doctor’s invoices
- Medical device receipts (wheelchair, crutches, slings, etc.)
- Prescription and non-prescription medication
In addition to medical invoices, you should maintain receipts for all other expenses relating to the accident that caused your injuries. These include:
- Automobile repairs
- Rental cars
- Alternate transportation
- Hotel stays if you visit an out-of-town specialist
If it is possible to do so, you should take photos of the accident scene. For example, if you were involved in a car accident, you should take pictures from various angles of the crash. Include all the vehicles that were involved. You can also take similar photos of other types of accidents, such as the dangerous area where you slipped and fell or the hazardous equipment that caused an accident at work.
Take photos of your injuries, too. These can show insurance companies or the court the extent of the harm you have suffered.
After a car accident, the responding police officer will have filled out a report at the scene. Obtaining copies of this report will allow your attorney to see the officer’s assessment of what happened and who was to blame for the crash.
If your injuries have prevented you from working, you should give your attorney copies of recent pay stubs. This will help them understand how much you would have made if you had been able to work. It can also assist in determining the degree to which your injury reduces your future earning capacity.
How to Get a Lawyer to Take Your Case
One of the primary considerations when trying to get a lawyer to take on your personal injury case is the likelihood that you will be able to recover compensation for your claim. If you have started building a strong case yourself by collecting the above materials, you will make it much easier for an attorney to see that they will be capable of helping you obtain compensation.
You should also be honest, upfront, and realistic when you speak to a potential attorney. If your story doesn’t quite add up, or if it seems like your expectations for compensation are too high, they will be less likely to take your case.
Finally, contacting a personal injury attorney as early as possible is always a good idea. Indiana’s statute of limitations on personal injury lawsuits outlines a two-year timeframe. That means you have two years from the accident date to file suit. A lawyer will probably not take your case if there isn’t enough time left to file a lawsuit if the insurance company doesn’t provide a reasonable settlement offer.
Contact an Experienced Indiana Personal Injury Lawyer Today
If an accident caused by someone else injured you, the experienced Indianapolis personal injury lawyers of Hankey Marks & Crider can help. Our team will work diligently to recover the full and fair compensation you deserve for your losses.
Call us today at (317) 634-8565 or contact us online for a free consultation.