Have you recently been involved in a personal injury accident that wasn’t your fault? Maybe you slipped and fell at work or perhaps you collapsed from overwork because you put in too many hours.
If you have personal injury claims then you’ll want to know how you can strengthen your case to make sure you win. Losing a case can be expensive as you have medical bills to cover and legal fees that you would need to stump up.
Here’s everything you need to know about filing a personal injury claim.
1. Recover First
Before you can consider pursuing a case against your employer or the place where your injury took place you need to get better.
If you are seriously injured and spend all of your time worrying about your case then this can affect your recovery. You might feel under so much stress that it makes you worse and it takes you longer to get better.
Ask friends and family to do most of the initial groundwork on the case and instead focus on resting. Read books and watch television if you are up to it.
Only once you are better and discharged from the hospital should you start working on building a case.
2. Gather Evidence
Gathering evidence is the most vital part of the case. Without strong evidence then you can’t prove that somebody else was at fault for your accident. If you slipped and fell over at work then you will want to enquire as to when the last time that corridor was cleaned.
If it wasn’t cleaned who was the cleaner that neglected it? Is there a rota to prove this? Was there a sign left beside the puddle? If not then why not and who made those decisions?
If you were walking on the sidewalk and there was an uneven slab and you tripped over that, how long had it been left uneven? Were there any barriers erected or signs telling you to avoid it?
Some evidence you can get to prove this is a picture of the uneven slab or the puddle of liquid that made you slip. You could also seek to acquire the CCTV that could show you slipping or falling.
Sone of this evidence is going to be hard to gather as the company or local council is unlikely to hand over the material if they are asked.
However, this is why you need to find the right lawyer who can pursue this evidence for you after consultation with you.
3. Find Witnesses
Another crucial step in your fight for justice is to find witnesses. If you slipped and fell at your place of work these could be your colleagues or other workers that watched what happened or who even saw the puddle previously on the same day.
It’s better if the witnesses to what happens are not your friends or close colleagues but are separate. This is so they can give an independent account of the incident during a lawsuit and will appear more credible.
With 1.35 million people dying from car accidents every year, it’s for personal injury claims to involve cars. You can appeal for witnesses in your local newspaper or on Facebook. Most motorists understand the perils of driving and are usually only too happy to help.
Be as specific as you can with the details of your accident. List what roads it took place on and at what time. Were there also any pedestrians who might be able to help you that you could reach out to?
4. File Your Claim With the Court
Next, it’s time to file your claim with the court so that your case can be heard. The first document you need to send to the court is a complaint that lists what the complaint is in basic detail. This is the most important aspect of filing a personal injury claim.
It also includes the details of the person or company you are intending to sue and on what grounds. As the person instigating the proceedings, you are known as the complainant or the plaintiff while those you are suing are known as the defendants.
As well as a complaint you can also expect to file a summons. This sets out in greater detail your case against the defendant. It will be signed by an official from the court and will also have a seal from the court on it. There are some minimal fees associated with filing these documents that vary from state to state, court-to-court.
With courts looking at how to handle the Coronavirus situation, new technology like online courts and AI could well make handling a personal injury claim even easier in years to come.
Personal Injury Claim: Get a Good Lawyer
If you want to make a personal injury claim then the first thing you want to do is to get a good lawyer on the case. They can take care of a lot of the paperwork and the hard work in getting your case watertight.
This can be helpful if you are laid up in bed or are critically ill because of your personal injury claims. The last thing you want to be worrying about is your case: you want to get better.
Many lawyers will work on a no-win-no-fee basis to ensure you don’t have to pay upfront. They will instead take a percentage of anything you receive from the court. If you don’t have much money or you are worried about the strength of the case then this can be a great option if it’s available to you.
Before you file a complaint you are going to need to gather evidence and try to find some witnesses to strengthen your case.
If you want to learn more about handling a personal injury claim check out the rest of our site.