Suffering any kind of harm in an accident or mishap can leave the victim traumatized – physically, mentally, and emotionally. But, if you were injured because of someone else’s fault, you should take legal action and pursue justice.
Having said that, filing a personal injury lawsuit is no walk in the park. Not only will you have to deal with your injuries, you’ll also have to suddenly start navigating unfamiliar waters for your right to compensation. After all, the legal system is quite complex.
Given that dealing with the legal quagmire is not the layman’s cup of tea, it may be in your best interest to hire a Utah personal injury lawyer and stay on the right track. As you make the most of their expertise and experience, it’ll become easy for you to prepare yourself for what lies ahead.
Also, working with a personal injury attorney can significantly improve your chances of winning your claim and ending up with a fair, if not a larger, compensation settlement.
With that in mind, let’s find out how you can prepare for your personal injury case.
6 Tips to Prepare for Your Personal Injury Lawsuit
1. Seek Immediate Medical Attention
It’s crucial to seek medical treatment after an accident. As well-practiced personal injury lawyers, we recommend this for two main reasons:
- Your health needs to be your topmost priority. Even if you think you’ve suffered minor or no injuries, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. Sometimes, injuries (especially internal injuries) take longer to manifest. It may be hours, days, or even weeks until you notice something. So, getting medical help can potentially save your life. It can also establish that you were, in fact, injured because of the accident.
- Victims of personal injury have a duty to mitigate their damages. This essentially means that they’re required to take reasonable measures to prevent their injuries from worsening.
Not getting medical help after an injury or failing to follow your doctor’s instruction can allow the other party’s (defendant) lawyer to argue that you let your injury intensify or prolong your recovery time on purpose. They can then demand that your damages be reduced accordingly.
2. Don’t Post to Social Media
We live in times when everyone’s on social media. Many people don’t mind sharing their lives with others. If you’re among them, our personal injury law firm recommends exercising caution if you’re involved in an accident. This is because insurance companies and defense attorneys will skim through your account(s) minutely to find any post that can be used against you.
Bear in mind that even private pages may be discoverable, and even seemingly innocent statements from you can harm your case during deposition or trial.
If you don’t want to be worried about how your posts can work against you, it’s best to avoid posting about your case altogether. Further, you should advise your near and dear ones to refrain from posting about your case or tagging you in their posts and pictures while your personal injury lawsuit is pending.
3. Hire a Seasoned Utah Personal Injury Attorney
Most lawyers focus their service on a specific niche and go on to become experts in their chosen branch of law. So, when you have a personal injury lawsuit at hand, you want to look for an attorney who specializes in personal injury cases.
Experienced personal injury lawyers have a wealth of knowledge and skills that they hone over time by successfully handling hundreds of cases. They’re in the best position to advocate on your behalf and represent you in court if required.
Moreover, when you work with a qualified personal injury attorney, you stand to benefit from their guidance, expertise, and their negotiation skills. You should make sure you level the playing field when dealing with insurers as they’ll surely hire the most seasoned legal professionals to try and minimize (even deny) your settlement.
4. Gather All the Evidence You Can
Whether your sustained injuries in a car crash or slip-and-fall accident, you’ll do well to collect all necessary evidence to prove the at-fault party’s negligence. This includes:
- Photos of your injuries
- Photos of the accident site
- Witness details, such as their names, contact numbers, addresses
- The defendant’s name and contact information
- Contact details of insurance companies
- Medical bills and other treatment-related records
- Receipts of money spent because of injuries
This information will enable your personal injury attorney to fill out the necessary paperwork when filing your personal injury lawsuit. In Utah, all paperwork must be duly filled out and filed within four years of the accident. Anything beyond that may not be entertained by the court at all.
5. Decide on an Acceptable Settlement Amount
Most personal injury lawsuits are settled out of court. Going to trial can be a lengthy and frustrating process. Hence, your personal injury law firm will first try to work with the defense and secure a settlement on your behalf, saving you time, money, and stress.
However, in order to improve your chances of obtaining the amount you hoped for, you should talk to your Utah personal injury lawyer in advance and determine the minimum payout that’s acceptable to you. You’ll need to consider the following factors to figure out a fair settlement amount:
- Medical costs
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering
- Punitive damages, if applicable
Remember, your Utah personal injury lawyer will always have your best interest in mind. While they may receive multiple unsatisfactory settlement offers, there will also be times an acceptable settlement is offered. When this happens, listen to your lawyer’s suggestion and decide wisely.
6. Gear up for Intense Scrutiny
Personal injury cases essentially involve proving negligence by another party. Therefore, the defense attorney will try to negate your claim by finding any loose ends in your case to prove the client is innocent and owes you nothing.
This means they’ll ask you details about your life and the case per se, and open them up for in-depth scrutiny, even outside of the courtroom.
In fact, the defense lawyer may even hire private investigators to follow you and track your daily activities around your home and in public. This is done to find loopholes in your injury claim. Hence, it’s important that you’re aware of this and ensures that you follow the precise instructions of your doctor and personal injury lawyer.
As proven personal injury attorneys, we know that this kind of investigation can be highly stressful. However, your lawyer will help you get through this.
While all legal matters can be extremely perplexing for a regular individual, personal injury cases tend to be the most complex. Fortunately, you can hire experts from a verified law firm to walk you through the entire process, while you focus on recovering. Your personal injury law attorney can be your strongest ally in preparing you for the road ahead.
Carlson Injury Law is a leading personal injury law firm dedicated to helping the people of Utah seek justice. Apart from all the legal help, your case will get personal attention from start to finish. Get in touch today to schedule a free consultation.