You figured in a car crash, but you feel fine. Should you go to a hospital?
Get yourself checked out, get some tests done. You may have internal injuries. You need documentation of the accident and its consequences to you, your health, and your ability to work. This rule applies to all involved in an accident: the driver at-fault, the driver-victim, passenger, or pedestrian.
Get to the hospital immediately.
When you experience a car crash, you need photos of the scene, videos from CCTV cameras or onboard dashcam, police report, and medical records. Oh, write down what you remember, for your personal reference. These documents are crucial
- To support insurance claims you make on your own insurance or on the insurance of the driver-at-fault.
- To claim disability compensation (workers’ compensation if you were injured while doing your job) or leave from work.
- To file a personal injury lawsuit.
For a personal injury lawsuit, these documents establish the date the injury occurred. In Maryland, you have three years to file a personal injury lawsuit. This three-year period or statute of limitations begins when your cause of action accrues. The date of the accident and the resulting death, injury or disability starts the period of claim.
Filing a claim for a broken arm? The date of the accident was the date you broke your arm. Claiming for a wrongful death? Tricky, but the date of the death starts the statute of limitations running. In either case, these records prove causality. They prove that the death or injury resulted from the accident itself. Records help lawyers negotiate a settlement and help insurance adjusters evaluate your claim.
Were you thinking about doing it yourself – without a lawyer? You can, but no, it’s wiser to have a competent and experienced personal injury lawyer. It’s difficult to recuperate if you’re all stressed out with paperwork and chasing up lawyers and insurance adjusters. Some lawyers represent on contingency – they get paid a percentage of any settlement or award you receive.
You don’t have to do it alone.