In the aftermath of an accident, victims discover just how daunting the recovery process can be. Many accidents, regardless of the specific type, can result in injuries ranging from relatively mild to severe and disabling. Victims may have to deal with long-term physical injuries and the financial turmoil that ensues from being unable to work. Victims should be encouraged to make every possible effort to protect their right to seek maximum compensation should they decide to pursue legal action for their injuries.
For accident victims to make a full recovery, they must have the necessary finances to make this possible. Steps taken by injured parties after an accident are paramount to a successful lawsuit outcome. Below are some tips to maximize the amount of compensation one will receive in a personal injury lawsuit.
- Preserve Evidence
From the moment of the accident, an injured individual should begin collecting and preserving crucial evidence to help prove the case. For example, at the accident scene, photos should be taken of the injuries and any contributing causes such as a damaged sidewalk or poorly lit stairwell. All witnesses need to be approached for their personal contact information. With permission, the witness could be recorded with your smartphone, giving a brief statement of what they saw.
The victim’s personal injury lawyer will review each piece of evidence, and one of these pieces could turn out to be precisely the item that sways a jury to decide in favor of the plaintiff. When the defendant’s lawyer and the insurance company representatives see the weight of the evidence, they may be more willing to offer a better settlement to avoid bringing the case before a jury.
- Seek Medical Care
Some accident victims are not sure if they need medical care right after the accident. However, they should seek treatment anyway, because some injuries are not noticed immediately. Physicians can often detect a problem even if symptoms have not been shown yet. All suggested treatment plans should be followed and documented.
When a legal suit is presented in court, there needs to be an accurate medical assessment of the injuries suffered. To effectively provide this proof, one must have documents from the hospital and their healthcare provider.
- Value the Claim Fully
No two accidents are alike, and neither are any two injuries exactly alike. Some victims believe that they can only receive compensation for one type of damage when, in fact, they may be eligible to be compensated for multiple issues such as broken bones, the loss of body function, emotional stress, and trauma. These damages could be compensated and added to the amount received for all out-of-pocket expenses.
- Do Not Take a Low Settlement Offer
Even if a plaintiff feels desperate to get a quick settlement, it is usually unwise to take the defendant party’s first offer. Generally, this is a low ball figure.
The injured party needs to convince the defendant’s side that full financial recovery is the only option. During this process, the victim may need to reject some initial offers. Of course, the victim will best be served working with a highly-qualified personal injury attorney.
- Explain an Offer’s Insufficiency
Unless the defendant’s side grasps a case’s strength, it may be difficult for the victim to get the maximum amount of compensation deserved. For this reason, the victim’s attorney should be able to explain why an offer is unacceptable and give documented proof to reinforce the claim.
- Include Future Damages
Damages and losses do not magically stop the moment a lawsuit is settled. Injuries can continue to present problems far into the future. Because of this, settlement negotiations should include consideration for funds to cover future needs. In some cases, the potential future damages make up a significant portion of a victim’s loss. Therefore, the injured victim needs to work diligently with doctors and other medical professionals to correctly document these future losses and include them in the settlement.
- Building the Case
With a legal case that is methodically built, a victim’s attorney can help maximize the damages that are awarded whether the case ever goes to trial or not. The attorney will take steps such as serving discovery demands on the other party, obtaining records, acquiring expert testimonies, and performing depositions. Without a strong case, the opposing side will notice the weak points and only offer low settlement amounts.
- File a Timely Lawsuit
There is often a time limit for filing a lawsuit, known as the statute of limitations. Failure to file your claim before the deadline will remove your eligibility to recover damages. To ensure that a case is filed correctly on time, and to see that crucial evidence is preserved, an injury victim should seek counsel from a qualified attorney as soon as possible after the accident. Evidence can erode, change, or disappear over time. Quickly filing a lawsuit allows for the formal gathering of evidence to begin, and it shows the other party the seriousness of the victim.
- Steer Clear of Social Media
Posting information on social media may seem innocent and harmless, but it can negatively affect injury lawsuits. If a victim’s lawsuit claims severe injuries, but social media postings show otherwise, a lawsuit can be ruined. It is highly recommended to keep quiet about the case publicly, and have all discussions about the case with the attorney.
- A Good Appearance Counts
The defendant party will usually determine a settlement offer that they believe a jury would reach at trial. However, juries are known to make judgments based on the things they see and hear at trial. Therefore, it behooves a plaintiff to make a good impression.
A plaintiff will benefit from showing respect, being polite, and looking one’s best. While these factors may seem relatively insignificant, they can end up being the very reasons that the defendant’s side gets uneasy and determines that the jury will likely choose to side with the plaintiff. These thoughts can ultimately result in the victim being offered a higher settlement amount.
Contact Dash Injury Law Firm For Today
If you were injured in an accident caused by another person or entity’s negligence, contact our law firm. We have years of experience in handling successful lawsuits for our clients, and we are committed to fighting for the maximum amount of compensation you deserve.
Following the tips mentioned above can help you receive fair compensation, and our personal injury lawyers can help guide you throughout the entire litigation process.
For a free case consultation, call 888-(DASH-LAW) or fill out an online contact form.