It is very rare that a person will be involved in more than one personal injury suit in their lifetime. This means that many people who are hurt badly don’t exactly know what to do when it comes to legal action. In fact, because talking to a lawyer is so daunting, many neglect filing a suit when they have an excellent case for it. This costs them a lot of money when it really shouldn’t. However, the best way to build confidence and sooth nerves is to know exactly what to expect. So if you are considering taking the first step and going in for a consultation with a personal injury lawyer, here is what to expect and what you need to bring.
For the very first consultation all you need to bring is yourself. There is no set formula to define the initial consultation because what that first meeting really is for is for you to get an idea if the lawyer is the right fit for you. Essentially what that first contact is for is to describe your case and for your lawyer to ask a series of questions. They will then determine if you have a valid case and if it is worth pursuing. This is why that first meeting is so important. Sometimes people think they have a really good case when in actuality they don’t even have a case at all.
However, after that initial meeting, once you have a valid case and choose to pursue it, your lawyer can tell you exactly what they want you to gather up. The most important documentation to gather up is your medical paper trail. Your medical records are the most important documents you can have in a personal injury or workers compensation case. This can include admission and discharge papers, contact information from the emergency room or ambulance staff, as well as a sign off of your injuries. Furthermore, you should have witness statements from the scene of the accident that can prove your injuries as well as the story of how it happened.
Naturally, you will also want to document the dates of work that you missed because of the injury as well as all of your insurance documentation like the policy documents and your adjuster’s name and number. If the police were called for the accident, you should also get a copy of the police report as well as the officer’s name and number from the scene.
Needless to say, this all sounds like a lot. However, for the most part, many of these documents are information you should already have. The only things you may have to go hunting for are medical reports, police reports, and witness statements. Of course, it is easy to say that you should collect these things at the scene of the accident, but we all know if you are injured, you have bigger worries on your mind.
While many of these pieces of documentation are confidential, meaning you and only you can collect them, your lawyer may be able to help you get documentation like witness statements. However, the real deal is that you put in the legwork to gather the documentation and the lawyer puts their brain full of legal knowledge to work in the court room to win it for you. It is a small price to pay for a payday that can cover your injuries and more.
If you have been hurt in an accident and find your medical bills to be staggering, don’t give up hope, contact us today. Talking to a lawyer can seem intimidating, but we at the Harnitz Law Office are just people. Furthermore, we are people that want to help.