If you have recently suffered a personal injury, you know how scary and overwhelming it can feel. The physical effects can be very unpleasant to deal with. To make matters worse, if you are like most of us, navigating the legal system and knowing what to expect from your personal injury case can be very confusing!
Stay off social media! That means Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. Don’t post photographs of yourself dancing if you’re claiming an injured back! Don’t tell anyone you went water skiing when you claim to have hurt your foot. Just stay off the internet and say as little as possible online instead.
Preexisting conditions do not necessarily rule out your ability to win a damage award. Be open with your lawyer about all of this when you speak to him. You don’t want him to be blindsided in court.
If you are contacted by an insurance company that claims it needs to take a statement for their investigations, refuse to say anything to them. The best thing to do in this situation is to give them the name of your attorney and tell them to call him if they have any questions or concerns.
File a report with the police. Filing a police report will give you an official way to document names, date, and time of the incident, as well as the contact information of other involved parties. In many cases, this will be your official record of what occurred. This police report will also be valuable evidence should your case go to trial.
Some sleazy lawyers use flashy and loud ads to pull people in, and that’s why you want to avoid them, even if they seem tempting. This type of aggressive advertising makes it nearly impossible to get a good feel for the lawyer’s honesty and abilities. It is best to ask friends and family for recommendations, as well as doing your own research before making a final decision.
Getting along with your lawyer is key, but there is something more you have to look for. Choose an attorney who truly listens to what you say. If they ever appear to not be listening, don’t choose that lawyer. While they may think they know it all, typically people with that belief are those who know the least.
If you find a lawyer who’s ego is larger than the bill they plan to charge you, run the other way. Egotistic blowhards aren’t enjoyable anywhere, and that is especially true in court. You don’t want to anger a judge or jury because your lawyer is arrogant and rude to the court.
You need to have a budget set up before you hire a lawyer. The costs can easily skyrocket if you don’t present your budget to your lawyer before they begin. Try to find someone who will work on a conditional basis so you only have to pay them if they win your case.
If you were injured by an animal, do your best to find out who it belongs to. If you make any mistake about who the owner is, and you file a suit, it may be difficult to sue someone else once it is revealed that this is not the owner.
You may have to hire a personal injury lawyer if you are involved in an accident. If you do, make sure you consult with professional organizations in the area to ensure that the lawyer is qualified to represent you. These organizations will also know if there have been any ethical or legal troubles associated with the firm you are considering.
Keep all the advice you get about your situation in mind and discuss it with your lawyer when you appoint one. Many other people, including your friends, family and coworkers, have experienced what you are going through and can offer helpful advice. Keep these things in mind as you work on your case.
Suffering a personal injury is never a pleasant experience. While you cannot change what has happened to you, you nevertheless can educate yourself on the important facts about personal injury law to make your legal experience as tolerable and seamless as possible. You have been through enough already, after all!