If you want to recover compensation for the harm that you suffered in an accident, you’ll need to consider taking legal action in the form of a personal injury lawsuit. To succeed on one of these claims, you’ll have to present enough evidence to prove that the defendant caused your accident and thus your injuries and to demonstrate the extent of your damages. These damages may include everything from medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, lost wages, lost earnings capacity, pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.
That may seem simple enough on the surface, but these legal claims are often more challenging than they seem. Therefore, in order to protect your interests as fully as possible, you’ll need to carefully think through how to gather the evidence that you need to support your case.
Where should you look for evidence?
Fortunately, there are a lot of places to turn for evidence. This includes each of the following:
- Police reports: A police report can contain facts that are key to your case, as well as identify witnesses and give an opinion as to causation. Because of this, a police report is often a good starting point for building your claim.
- Witness accounts: You’ll also want to identify and speak with anyone who saw the accident. These individuals may be able to attest to not only the defendant’s driving actions at the time of the wreck but also your driving behavior at that time, which may help you dispel any arguments pertaining to comparative negligence.
- Medical records: To help prove your damages, you’ll want to gather your treatment records to show your diagnosis, prognosis and need for ongoing care. These records can also show how expensive your care has been up to this point.
- Expert opinions: If your wreck involved multiple vehicles or was otherwise complex, you may need an expert in accident reconstruction to help you prove causation and liability. You might also need a medical expert to speak about the extent of your injuries, your need for future treatment and the impact that your injuries will have on your ability to work.
- Your personal journal: Non-economic damages like pain and suffering and mental anguish can be extensive in your case. But in order to assign a monetary value to those losses, the judge or jury is going to have to understand how your injuries have negatively impacted your life. Although that can be hard to put into words sometimes, you might find it easier to do so if you keep a journal of how your harm has impacted you, your family and your ability to do the things you love.
Keep in mind, too, that you’ll also want to refrain from doing things that may inadvertently damage your case. For example, don’t make social media posts that give the impression that your injuries aren’t as severe as you claim them to be. Also, be careful of what you say to insurance companies, as they may twist your words out of context to use them against you.
Do you need help building your case?
As you can see, there’s a lot to take into consideration as you work to build your claim. Don’t feel overwhelmed by the process, though. Skilled legal teams like the one at our firm are here to help you navigate the complexities of your case so that the strongest legal arguments possible under the facts can be put forth. Hopefully, then, you can secure the outcome that you deserve.