When an automobile accident occurs, you’ll understandably be shaken. However, you may also be injured, and your injuries could range from mild cuts, scrapes, bruises, and burns to more serious damage like whiplash, concussions, broken bones, and more.
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident, you might find yourself facing a long recovery, but also dealing with a mountain of medical bills. You may be unable to work temporarily or permanently, which could further impact your ability to pay your expenses.
As if the accident itself wasn’t traumatic enough, you might also have to deal with insurance companies who delay or deny claims for your costs. This can be a truly devastating experience when you’re trying to recover from accident and injuries.
What you need is a qualified attorney who is well versed in California state laws to help you navigate the tricky waters of negotiating a fair settlement so that you can receive compensation that covers your present and future costs. In order to ensure the best chance of a successful outcome, however, it’s imperative that you have the right documentation to bolster your case.
Here are the most important records you’ll need to collect after an automobile accident.
Pictures and Witness Statements
Residents of Los Angeles know how hard it can be to get police to come to the scene of an accident, but when a severe injury or fatality occurs, the law requires that you call the police and file a written report within 24 hours of the incident. In such cases, there’s a high likelihood the police will show up.
While you’re waiting, however, it’s wise to collect as much information as you can. If possible, take pictures of the scene of the accident immediately (if it is safe to exit your vehicle), before vehicles are moved to the side of the road. Make sure to get pictures of any damage to the vehicles, the entire scene, and identifying markers like road signs.
You should also take pictures of your injuries, either at the scene or at the hospital when you seek medical attention. If you’re unable to do this on your own, ask a passenger or a witness at the scene to do it for you.
The next step is to gather information from other drivers and witnesses at the scene. You’ll need names and contact information for everyone, as well as driver’s licenses and insurance information from other drivers involved in the accident.
You’ll want to collect witness statements, too. Although these will also be a part of the police report, you should jot down notes about your own recollection of the accident to preserve the details you might forget as time goes by. Again, if you’ve been seriously injured, seek immediate medical attention and ask someone else at the scene to handle these details for you.
The police report is a key piece of evidence that your Los Angeles lawyer will use to prove fault in an accident and fight for the compensation you deserve in the aftermath. This document should contain evidence gathered at the scene, the responding officer’s assessment of the situation, and driver, passenger, and witness statements to provide a clear picture of what happened, and in some cases, an idea of which party was at fault.
Insurance providers that are intent on denying or minimizing a personal injury claim will try to downplay any details that make their client appear liable. By presenting police citations (i.e., tickets) issued to at-fault drivers in the accident, you can help to prove fault. The police report should state if any citations were given.
Medical Records and Bills
Compensation from an auto accident starts with the medical records that detail your injuries, as well as the charges you receive for your medical care. This essential information gives you the leverage to negotiate for a settlement that covers your medical bills, including anticipated future medical expenses that relate to ongoing treatments like physical therapy, for example.
Records of Other Costs and Losses
Securing fair compensation for an accident can be tricky, as there could be a number of costs and losses related to your recovery. In California, you can seek economic damages to cover the cost of medical treatments, prescription medications, medical devices, rehabilitation, property repair or replacement, lost wages and future income, and more.
You can also seek non-economic damages for emotional distress, insomnia, anxiety, pain and suffering, disfigurement, loss of limb, loss of consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, and more. In other words, any significant impact to your life or livelihood could result in compensation, but you’ll need to provide records that show that impact.
Gathering all of this information on your own and fighting large insurance companies can be daunting, to say the least, especially when you’re trying to recover from injuries sustained in an auto accident. Luckily, the friendly and experienced team at Lalezary Law Firm is ready to help. With a proven track record of wins in cases like yours and a personal touch that puts you at ease, you’ll be in great hands. Even better, you’ll never pay fees unless we win your case.
To request a free consultation or case review, contact the qualified professionals at Lalezary Law Firm today at 888-778-8888 or online. We Fight. You Win. They Pay