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What to do if you or a loved one is Injured
Automobile Accident / Pedestrian Accident Checklist
There are over 3 million injuries a year from transportation accidents and around 40,000
fatalities. Over 35% of fatalities are alcohol related. An even higher percentage of injuries
are the result of driver error and negligence.
Sometimes injuries may be directly or indirectly the result of mechanical or other defects
affecting automobiles or component parts. Defective tires, brakes, steering, and seatbelts can
have devastating consequences and victims and their families need aggressive representation to
protect their rights.
Our lawyers are available to represent those injured in auto, motorcycle,
trucking and pedestrian accidents and in all cases including wrongful death and aim to maximize
the recovery for their clients.
What to do if you or a loved one is Injured:
Gather and document any material or other evidence and obtain the names and contact information
of any witnesses and that of involved parties. This information may be crucial both for establishing
the liability of the negligent parties as well as for proving the nature, extent and causation of
injuries. Injury claims in which this critical evidence has been preserved are almost invariably
easier to settle at full value. If the claim requires litigation, this evidence becomes even more
critical to a successful outcome.
When a qualified attorney takes on a personal injury claim, the attorney will promptly begin to
collect all the evidence that may be relevant to the claim. The earlier this is done, the better off
the case will be. If the injured person has already begun to put this information together, this will
Since the nature of many pieces of evidence may not be obvious to the non-attorney and many
victims may be shaken by the experience,we suggesst using the following checklists to help you
protect yourself from having crucial evidence lost or destroyed. Since every case is unique, these
lists can't include every type of evidence possible. Rather, these are intended to describe the
most common pieces of evidence needed for successful resolution of a personal injury claim.
Collecting as much of this evidence as early on as you can will give both you and your attorney
a significant advantage in resolving your claim promptly and at maximium value.
Automobile Accident / Motorcycle / Pedestrian Accident Checklist
After the insurance and driver's license information has been exchanged, most laypeople
have the misunderstanding that evidence gathering and preservation has concluded. This, however,
is not the case. Here are some tips that you can use to ensure that you have maximized your potential
for recovery through evidence preservation.
License Plate Information
- Following an accident, the single most important thing you can do to protect yourself is to copy down the license plate number of the other vehicle involved.
- Sometimes the person driving the car does not own the car. You may think that you have protected yourself by obtaining the driver's license information of the other driver, but this is often not sufficient. By writing down both the driver's information and the license plate of the vehicle, you have worked to more thoroughly protect yourself and ensure that you have obtained all the information that you might need in the event of litigation.
- If a police officer has come to the accident scene, be sure to ask if a report of the accident will be prepared and where and when it will be available. If the officer does not intend to prepare a report, be sure to request the officer's name and badge number for later contact.
Statements of Witness(es)
- Take pictures of your vehicle as soon as possible. Take pictures from all angles, not just the damaged portions.
- If possible, take pictures of the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident.
- Take pictures of the surrounding area to preserve the way it looked at the time of accident.
- Take pictures of the surrounding location and roadway for any physical damage, skid marks, or debris.
- If you or someone in your vehicle sustained a visible injury: i.e, bruise, cut, scrape, or stitches, take photograph(s) of the injury to preserve the state of the injury at the time of the injury.
- Feel free to take as many photographs of what you think may, no matter how trivial, be important to the accident. Your attorney will decide what is and what is not important.
- If you were a pedestrian, take photos of the crosswalk or the location where you crossed at street or where you were standing, walking, jogging, at the time of your accident.
- Take the name, address and telephone number of any potential witness and save this information someplace where it will not be lost.
- Return to the accident scene, visit any nearby homes or business for any potential witness(es) to the accident.
- Revisit the scene of the accident several times at the same time at which the accident took place. Some people may have a habit of visiting, stopping, driving, etc, by the location of the accident as part of their normal daily routine. You may able to find a witness.
- If you have obtained witness information, do not contact or speak to the witness(es) again. Do not try to solicit a written statement and/or drawing from the witness. Let your attorney contact any possible witness(es).
- After taking photographs of your damaged vehicle, take the vehicle for a repair estimate as soon as possible. You are not obligated to use a repair facility recommended by an insurance company to have repairs done, but it generally won't hurt to get estimates from recommended garages.
- Obtain written and dated repair estimates from a minimum of two repair facilities, at least one of which you selected without insurance company suggestion.