What Documents Do I Need for My Personal Injury Case?
Posted on Friday, December 10th, 2021
The documentation you need after suffering an injury in an accident will depend on the type of personal injury case you have. Documents considered valuable in a car accident claim might not be useful in a wrongful death lawsuit.
It’s critical to know the type of documentation you need before beginning collecting them. You could waste time and money requesting copies of records or obtaining the information you don’t need.
You should also hire an experienced personal injury lawyer to represent you. They can handle the collection of evidence on your behalf so you can focus on recovering from your injury.
Below is an overview of the most vital documents an accident victim can obtain while pursuing compensation in a personal injury case.
Police and Incident Reports
A police or incident report is the first piece of evidence that can indicate how the accident occurred and who might be at fault. It can include relevant information you need to show someone else should be held liable for your injury.
You can request a copy of a police report after a car accident. If an officer arrived at the crash scene to investigate, they should have written a police report. You can request a copy of it online or by calling the records department at the police station or sheriff’s office in the jurisdiction of the accident. The report should contain details about each driver’s actions, whether witnesses saw what happened, who caused the crash, and whether anyone suffered injuries.
An incident report might be available in other situations, such as a slip and fall, nursing home abuse, or dog bite. If you’re in a public place, informing the manager and asking to complete an incident report can benefit your case. Having a document to show when the accident happened and who’s responsible could help you prove fault.
Accident Scene Photos
Photographic evidence is hard to dispute. You can take photos at the accident scene or of visible injuries you suffered. You should also take pictures of anything that might have contributed to your injury.
For example, if the dangerous conditions on someone else’s property caused the accident, take a picture of the pothole, defective staircase, slippery floor, or blown-out light bulbs.
Request a copy of your medical records, such as documentation of your hospital stays, emergency medical services, physical therapy, and prescriptions. Any documentation related to your treatment can be vital evidence in your personal injury case. You need to be able to show you sustained an injury in the accident to prove you’re entitled to compensation.
Every time you visit your doctor, undergo imaging testing, or receive a written prescription, your medical providers record that information in your patient file. During your ongoing case, you can obtain copies and submit them to the insurance company.
Gather all billing statements, receipts, and invoices for the treatment you seek while healing your injury. These documents can show the costs you incurred after the accident. When it comes time to negotiate a settlement or pursue compensation in a lawsuit, you will have proof of the money you need to cover everything.
Besides expenses for medical care, you should also take note of out-of-pocket costs. Write a list of everything you have to pay out of pocket following the incident. You can also print out bank or credit card statements.
Eyewitnesses can back up your version of events. You should ask for their names and phone numbers so you can speak with them later if necessary. Ask if they would be willing to provide a statement about what they saw. If they give a written statement, you can use it as evidence to support your claim.
Lost Wages Reports
Many accident victims can’t return to work because of an injury. If you have physical or mental limitations after the incident, record the number of hours you miss and the pay you can’t earn.
You could also ask your employer for a lost wage report to complete and send to the insurance company. The document should show your usual working hours and wages and your current, reduced amount of hours and wages due to the accident.
At OnderLaw, LLC, our Missouri personal injury lawyers believe in providing quality and dependable legal services to our clients. We know how much you’ve struggled since the accident and want to help you recover. We will be your advocate and fight for the maximum compensation you’re entitled to when you hire us.
If you suffered an injury in an accident due to someone’s negligence, call OnderLaw, LLC at (314) 963-9000 for a free consultation. We can review the information you provide and advise you whether you have a personal injury case to pursue.