7 Essential Tips for Filing a Personal Injury Claim

Slips and falls, dog bites, car accidents: whatever the situation, personal injuries can feel overwhelming. Once you’re on your way to recovery, you’ll want to file a personal injury claim to help cover the costs associated with the incident.

The way you handle the personal injury claim process can impact the outcome. Even little mistakes could ruin your case or decrease how much money you receive. Do not speak or give a recorded statement to the at fault party’s insurance company before speaking with an attorney.

Follow these tips to increase your chances of success with your personal injury claim after you have spoken with an attorney.

1. Seek Medical Treatment

Getting medical care should be your priority after an accident. Even if the injury seems minor at first, you need a doctor to evaluate your situation. There could be something more serious that you don’t notice.

Some injuries don’t show symptoms right away and others get worse over time. If a doctor doesn’t diagnose and treat the situation soon enough, you might have serious complications.

The medical exam also shows the full extent of the injuries. This helps establish how much money you’re entitled to as part of the settlement.

The insurance company could also dispute your claims if you don’t see a doctor right away. They might question if you were actually injured in the accident. They might also suggest that the injury wouldn’t have been as severe if you would have seen a doctor sooner.

Once you see your doctor, follow the treatment plan exactly. Skipping medication, therapy, and other treatments puts you at risk for making the injuries worse. It could also work as an argument against your case since skipping treatment could make increase the severity of the injuries.

2. Record the Details

Supporting your claim with details and evidence increases your chances of getting the settlement amount you want. If you’re seriously injured, getting medical treatment is your first priority. As soon as possible, start collecting evidence and writing down notes to support your claim. Direct your notes and comments to your attorney in order to maintain attorney client privilege. 

Photographs from the scene help to show the circumstances. This can prove that someone else was negligent, which led to your injuries.

If the incident happens in a public area, you might be able to find security camera footage that shows the accident. The video might show unsafe conditions or someone else being reckless, leading to the injury.

Create a written document of the details of the incident. Include the events leading up the incident and what happened during the accident. Avoid emotional descriptions, instead focus on the facts of the situation.

3. Contact a Lawyer

Speak with an experienced personal injury lawyer no matter what you may think is the value of your claim. You can file personal injury claims yourself, but personal injury lawyers will make the process easier and more successful. Attorneys understand the personal injury claim process and strategies to get higher settlements.

Small personal injury claims may be manageable on your own. If your case is more complicated, a lawyer’s expertise can be useful. Examples include claims where you’re seeking larger sums or there’s some question of fault.

Complicated cases often get drawn out and require lots of negotiation. Some end up in court. 

Insurance companies have lots of strategies to fight claims. If the case ends up in court, they’ll have lawyers on their side. Going into a claim with your own lawyer prepares you to fight those strategies no matter what happens with the case.

Even if you don’t face a fight, your attorney can ensure you provide all the necessary information. They also ensure you meet the necessary deadlines.

Your attorney can handle all of the negotiations on your behalf so you don’t have to deal with representatives from the other side. Your lawyer’s strong negotiation strategies increase the change of getting a higher settlement.

Personal injury attorneys typically use a contingency fee approach. This means you don’t have to pay attorney fees upfront. Instead, you pay when you receive your settlement with the fee being a percentage of what you receive.

4. Limit What You Say

You might find yourself want to share what happened to you with anyone who’ll listen. Staying quiet about your personal injury case protects your claims and may help you get the outcome you want. Only discuss your case with your attorney.

It’s often best to avoid posting on social media during your case. Even posts that seem innocent, such as pictures of things you do, could hurt your case. If you show yourself doing something active, the insurance company could say you’re not as severely injured as you’re claiming.

5. Document Everything

Document all interactions and events from the time of the incident until you receive your compensation. This paper trail helps you keep track of the progress. 

Write down the date, time, and details of any conversations you have with the insurance company. Save any paperwork you receive during the case. 

Filing a Successful Personal Injury Claim

A personal injury claim helps you get the compensation you deserve after suffering an injury due to someone else’s negligence. An attorney with experience handling personal injury claims will help you recover what you deserve. Understanding the process and following these tips can help you receive a fair settlement.

If you’re dealing with a personal injury, contact us for a consultation on your case.

What Is a Personal Injury Lawsuit? 5 Main Types of Personal Injuries

personal injury lawsuit

We all know it in the back of our minds: injuries and accidents happen, we’re just waiting for the next time they happen to us. It’s bad enough when an accident is inevitable, but when it occurs because of someone else’s negligence, you shouldn’t be left to foot the bill.

That’s why personal injury cases are so common today. They give you an opportunity to hold the person accountable while minimizing the damage you have to suffer.

Although every case is unique, they all boil down to a few top categories and types of personal injuries.

1. Car Accident Cases

Every year, there are 2.35 million people injured in vehicle accidents in the US alone. Many of these injuries are mild, but some of them are life-changing.

In a car accident lawsuit, you need to prove that the other driver was at fault or mostly at fault for the collision. You also need to be able to prove your injuries and damages.

It’s important to recognize that your settlement isn’t only meant to cover the costs you’ve already incurred. You need to consider the future repercussions of your injuries too.

For instance, you may need ongoing physical therapy or even home nursing care. If your future career prospects are damaged or ended because of your injury, you should be suing for that loss as well.

2. Medical Malpractice Cases

To many victims, medical malpractice cases are especially emotional. After all, you put your trust in a medical professional, and when they are reckless with your health, it feels like a betrayal.

With a medical malpractice case, one of the most critical challenges is proving that the provider failed to meet the minimum standard of care.

For instance, there are known risks to certain procedures and medications. If you happen to have complications despite the doctor taking all the necessary precautions, you wouldn’t win a malpractice suit.

Instead, these lawsuits are meant for cases when doctors fail to meet their minimum requirements. For instance, if a surgeon doesn’t sterilize their equipment properly and it causes an infection, you’re likely to win that lawsuit.

3. Assault, Battery, Other Intentional Injuries

Most of the time with vehicle accidents and medical malpractice cases, the person who injured you is being reckless and neglectful. They aren’t necessarily injuring you on purpose.

Assault, battery, and other intentional injury cases are different. The person actively chose to do harm to you rather than just choosing to take risks with your safety.

For this reason, plaintiffs in these cases are more likely to receive damages above and beyond their financial losses. That could include pain and suffering payments or punitive damages. If you aren’t familiar with the term, punitive damages are meant to be punishment for a defendant’s actions.

In these types of personal injury cases, the more documentation you have, the better. This is one of several reasons why it’s important to file a police report when an assault or battery occurs. Police reports are viewed as highly reliable evidence rather than he-said-she-said stories from the people involved.

4. Slip and Fall or Premises Injury Cases

Personal injury cases don’t always deal with a person’s actions in the moment an incident happens. Sometimes the problem is that the person didn’t take preventative measures to keep you safe before the incident occurred.

Premises injuries like slip and fall cases are prime examples of this.

Any property owner has a responsibility to take precautions to make their property safe for visitors. That includes commercial properties like stores and restaurants.

A slip and fall case is exactly what it sounds like. You’re on someone else’s property and you injure yourself because they didn’t take precautions like mopping up a spill.

However, you may also be able to sue a property owner due to their failure to protect you from crime.

For example, you’re leaving a restaurant late at night. Thanks to a lack of lighting or security in the parking lot, it attracts criminals and they rob you. You can seek damages from the property owner for failing to take precautions against a known risk.

5. Dog Bite Cases

This category might seem specific but it’s surprisingly common. As much as every pet parent loves their furry friends, there is always a risk involved.

As far as the law is concerned, a pet owner is liable for any damage or injury their pet causes. It varies from state to state, but in Wisconsin, owners are liable for the cost of any dog bite or other injuries their pets cause.

In some cases, the damages can be more extreme. If an owner knows their dog has bitten someone in the past and the dog bites someone again, the owner may need to pay double the financial damages to the second victim.

This is meant to force dog owners to take more responsibility if their pet is known to be aggressive. While any dog can bite at any time, owners need to take extra precautions if they know their dog has this tendency.

As with other injuries, you may be able to receive damages for future consequences of a dog bite. For instance, perhaps the bite scarred you and you need reconstructive surgery for the scar. You can seek damages to pay for that surgery.

Understanding the Types of Personal Injuries for Your Case

In all types of personal injury lawsuits, one of the biggest problems for plaintiffs is a lack of knowledge. Some people don’t bring a lawsuit at all even if they deserve compensation because they worry about the process and the hassle or they don’t realize they have a case.

While it helps to have a basic understanding of the types of personal injuries, your next step is to hire a lawyer who can take the case off your hands. To find out if you have a case, call our personal injury attorneys today.