For some people, a car accident is the most traumatic event they experience in their lifetimes. So it’s no surprise that the moments following an accident or injury are often chaotic and stressful. However, collecting certain information immediately after the accident can be crucial for your legal case. This blog outlines the key types of information you should remember to gather after an incident to document the impact of the injury on your life. We’ll also discuss how being represented by a lawyer often influences how insurance companies treat your claim.
- The Role of Lawyers in Evidence Collection: A lawyer can provide vital guidance on what information to collect following an accident. They understand the nuances of what constitutes strong evidence and can help ensure that you gather everything needed to build a solid case. For example, many people never have an opportunity to see their vehicle again after it is towed from the scene of the accident. The accident scene may be the only place you have to document your vehicle’s post-wreck condition.
- Expert Preservation and Documentation of Evidence: Some types of evidence, such as skid marks on a road or specific damage patterns on the body of a vehicle, may require experts to document and interpret. Lawyers often work with forensic experts to preserve this kind of evidence, which can be critical in establishing fault and liability. For example, an accident reconstruction expert may rely on evidence obtained from the accident scene to reconstruct the accident and determine the at-fault party.
- The Power of Photographs: The old phrase “A picture is worth a thousand words” is particularly true in the context of accident scenes. The scene of an accident is “ground zero” for your claim; most of the evidence you will need to collect for trial will emanate from that location. Photographs can vividly capture details like vehicle positions, road conditions, and visible injuries. These images are powerful tools in reconstructing the event and demonstrating the severity of the situation. Scars fade away, but photographs never do.
- Identifying and Securing Witness Testimonies: Knowing who the witnesses are and securing their testimonies can significantly strengthen your case. For most accidents, at least one person unrelated to the parties witnesses what happened. Their testimony regarding the cause of an accident can “break the tie” in a he-said she-said case between drivers. Witnesses can provide objective accounts of the incident, which might corroborate your version of events.
- Documenting Evidence of Injury: It’s crucial to document the extent of your injuries immediately following the accident. This can mean physically documenting your injuries with photographs. It can also mean simply seeking medical treatment to create a medical record of your post-wreck injuries. Medical records, photographs of injuries (especially temporary conditions like bruising), and doctor’s reports are vital in illustrating the impact of the other party’s negligence on your life. The more evidence you have of your injuries beyond your own testimony, the better.
- The Influence of Legal Representation on Insurance Companies: Insurance companies often approach cases differently when the claimant has legal representation. For example, they may pressure you to settle your case before the full extent of your injuries are known, or they may deny a claim on flimsy grounds that would not pass muster upon review by most attorneys. A lawyer can be your “protector,” ensuring that your rights are protected and that the insurance companies offer a fair settlement, rather than trying to minimize your claim.
What Gary Says About Speaking to Your Insurer After an Accident:
Collecting the right information immediately after an accident is crucial for building a strong legal case. Understanding what information to collect and how it can be presented as evidence is crucial. For those in Columbus, Georgia, Harris County, Georgia, Ft. Moore, Georgia, Phenix City, Alabama and Lee County, Alabama, The Law Office of Gary Bruce, with over 30 years of experience in helping individuals with insurance claims, can provide invaluable assistance. If you have further questions or need advice on potential recovery for injuries, call The Law Office of Gary Bruce at 706-576-4279 for a free, no-obligation consultation.
Contact The Law Office of Gary Bruce at 706-576-4279 for expert legal assistance in these challenging situations. Gary also addressed this issue on a recent episode of “Legal Break” during the WTVM morning news. This link will take you to the video: http://www.garybrucelaw.com/video/wtvm-legal-break-what-information-should-i-make-sure-to-collect-as-soon-as-possible-after-an-accident-or-injury/