Hiring a personal injury attorney to help you with your case was the first right move, but don't stop there. To achieve success, your lawyer will need your help, and only by working together can you ensure that you will be properly compensated for your injuries. Read on to learn about the ways you can form a team with your lawyer and assist with your personal injury claim.
1. Provide vital information to your lawyer. At your first meeting, you will want to ensure that your lawyer will be interested in taking your case, and most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basics. This means the lawyer won't take cases that cannot be won, since they only get paid when you do. You can get your attorney up to speed quickly by providing the following information at the first meeting.
- The accident or police report.
- Your own auto insurance info and any insurance information you have from the at-fault party.
- The contact information for all other parties, including any witnesses.
- Your medical expenses thus far.
- Proof of loss income, such as pay stubs and tax returns.
2. Refuse to give a recorded statement. You will very likely be contacted by the other party's insurance company and requested to give a recorded statement. You should understand that you are not required to speak to this claims adjuster and that doing so could place your entire claim in jeopardy. Therefore, you should not give the statement.
3. Be honest with your lawyer. The other side will undoubtedly investigate you, so be as forthright as possible with your lawyer about past issues with the law or with your finances. For example, if you have traffic-related tickets or charges in the past, be sure to let your lawyer know.
4. Help your lawyer understand your pain and suffering. No one knows like you do the effect that the accident has had on your emotions and mental well-being. A journal will prove to be invaluable when it comes time to calculate your pain and suffering for settlement purposes. Note issues such as anxiety, depression, sleeping and eating problems, and more.
5. Don't wait to seek help. The statute of limitations could prevent you from getting the compensation you deserve, so seek legal assistance as soon as possible. Additionally, recording witness testimonies and securing evidence should not be delayed.
A personal injury lawyer can take the bulk of the burden from your shoulders, which will allow you time to heal from your injuries. Be sure, however, to work closely with your lawyer for the best result.