All it takes is one negligent driver to flip your life upside down. Even a minor wreck can leave you in considerable pain, grappling with serious injuries, and left to shoulder the burden of rapidly rising medical debts and other accident-related losses.
Thankfully, you may be able to recover compensation for your damages by filing either a first- or third-party personal injury claim. However, a payout is never a guarantee, and you might need to take many different actions to make sure you give your case the best possible chances of success.
Let’s look at a few steps you should follow in the wake of a car wreck:
1. Save Evidence You Gathered at the Scene
Were you able to take photographs of the wreckage? Speak to eyewitnesses? Obtain recordings from nearby surveillance cameras? Any evidence you managed to collect in the immediate aftermath could be crucial to the success of your claim, so you should compile such proof in a safe place so that it’s ready to share with your attorney. Additionally, you should retain copies of any financial documents associated with your accident-related expenses as you will need to provide evidence of the losses you’ve incurred in order to secure a settlement.
2. Don’t Accept a Settlement Offer Too Soon
After an accident, your costs can add up at a rapid pace. Understandably, you’re probably eager to get your hands on a settlement. However, until you’ve recovered from your injuries, or reached the point at which your condition is unlikely to improve with further treatment, agreeing to a settlement offer could leave you with a payout that doesn’t account for the full range of your damages.
Not only might you require additional unanticipated procedures or physical therapy sessions, but you may also have to take more time off work than you initially expected. As such, you shouldn’t accept a settlement offer until you have a clear idea of all the expenses associated with the accident and your injuries.
3. Start a Personal Injury Journal
While you might not need to present your entries as evidence, starting a personal injury journal immediately after the wreck can help you preserve information about the accident, your injuries, and recovery. In your entries, make sure to log your pain levels, describe any limitations that prevent you from leading a normal life, and explain the ways in which your injuries have affected your quality of life.
If your attorney believes you might have grounds to seek non-economic damages as part of a third-party claim, your entries could help you build a case for losses such as emotional distress, mental anguish, and pain and suffering.
4. Follow Your Doctor’s Orders
After an accident, you should almost always visit the doctor for a diagnosis. While it might seem like you survived the collision unscathed, adrenaline may be masking the signs of something serious or your injuries might take a few hours—or even days—to manifest any symptoms.
However, undergoing a medical assessment isn’t just about taking care of your health. If you’re planning to file a personal injury claim, this is a crucial step that will demonstrate that you took your recovery seriously from day one. Failing to visit the doctor within a reasonable timeframe could result in disputes.
Discuss Your Case with a Detroit Car Accident Attorney
While car accidents are an everyday occurrence, the consequences of a serious wreck are rarely routine. At Seva Law Firm, our attorneys can help guide you through the difficult days ahead, providing support and advice as they tackle the task of investigating the accident and building your case. Call us today at (248) 385-5704 or head over to our contact page HERE to pencil in a free case review with a Detroit car accident attorney.