1. Preserve Evidence.
The more evidence you preserve for your personal injury case, the easier time you will have in proving who is at fault for the accident. Ideally, you will take photos of the accident scene. Also, if possible, grab the names and contact information of any witnesses to the accident. If there’s a police report, incident report or anything of that nature it is important that you retrieve this.
2. Get medical treatment.
I’ve written about this before and I cannot emphasize the importance of getting treatment right away. This is important because you want to show the insurance company that you have suffered injuries. If you wait too long to get treatment the insurance company will take the position that your injuries or condition is not from the accident but from some other issue. Getting treatment will also assist in your recovery and to hopefully find out a proper diagnosis and prognosis.
3. Evaluate your case properly.
It’s easiest to talk to a personal injury lawyer about this. Prior to going to a mediation or attempting to settle your claim make sure you fully understand its value and do not settle for anything less. Once you have an accurate understanding of your case you can confidently pursue the claim against the insurance company. Keep in mind that it is important that you are open to listening to the insurance company’s version of the claim so as to not be blind sided at trial.
4. Don’t be too eager to settle.
The insurance company is likely not going to pay the full value of your claim right away. You may need to push them further down the road in litigation. Often times the insurance company will try to scare you at mediation by saying your case will take years and years to get to trial. Do not let them intimidate you with these threats.
5. Build your personal injury case.
Often times experts are needed to build the strength of your case through reports. These reports will show the insurance company the extent of your injuries. The experts will often comment on the seriousness of your injuries and their permanence. They will also provide a diagnosis, prognosis and treatment recommendations. The reports are what help build your case in the lead up towards trial.
6. Stay off social media.
Insurance companies often check your social media to see what you are up to after the accident. They want to see you doing things that make it seem you are not injured. For example, if you have a picture of you hiking after a car accident the insurance company will want to know about it and tell the jury that you are clearly not injured if you are hiking after an accident. It is best to stay off social media completely in order to avoid such a situation.
7. Make a good impression.
It is important that you come across as a likeable and sympathetic witness at examinations for discovery. Be honest and respectful with defence counsel. They are going to report to the insurance company and say whether they think a jury would like you. Sympathetic witnesses are often rewarded by juries more than unsympathetic witnesses. Your lawyer will coach you through this prior to examinations for discovery.