It may seem that the last thing on your mind when you’ve been injured in an accident is what you need to do to win a case against the individual or organization at fault for your injury. However, whether your case is large or small, your injuries severe or minor, if you want to stand a chance in court against the party at fault you must do all you can to preserve the evidence in some way. Here are some ways in which you can do just that.
Personal Injury Evidence at the Scene
The scene of the injury or incident may be the most important aspect of winning your case, especially if you were injured in a car accident, fall, or work-related incident. Why? Because the physical surroundings in which your injury occurred may have been a contributing factor to your injury occurring in the first place.
To preserve evidence at the scene, take photos. Use your phone, return to the scene with your camera, or have someone else take photos for you if you can’t. If your incident happened in a public place, crowded space, or on the street, there may be photos taken by others that you can find online. Try local news and social media sites. If law enforcement responded to the scene, they may have photos that they can copy and share with you.
Other evidence may be available to you as well. You’d be surprised what can cause an injury, and what you might find when you scour the scene, especially if you do it soon after your injury has occurred.
Personal Injury Evidence on Your Body
You’ll no doubt have visible injuries, or medical proof of internal injuries. Make sure you get copies of any photos, x-rays, ultrasounds, and/or CT scans, and all your written medical records, too. You cannot be denied access to your own records, but you may have to sign paperwork before your medical professionals can release them to you.
Start with the EMTs or emergency department records from immediately after the incident, and go all the way through your follow-up and recovery visits. This will prove that your injuries were indeed caused by the incident in question and not from another source. This will also prove that your injuries are as serious as you are claiming them to be.
Personal Injury Evidence From Witnesses
Police reports may list any witnesses that came forward or were approached by them at the scene of your incident if in a public place. You may find some others when you return to the scene. Still others may have to be coaxed out through use of social media or a newspaper ad. Witnesses can often know things that you are unaware of, such as things that were going on around you at the time of the incident or statements that were made by an individual at fault prior to your incident. They can also sometimes tell you if things have been made to appear differently since your incident, in an effort to cover up the true nature of the cause.
Witnesses should also be approached as soon after the incident as possible, because they can suffer memory loss if left too long. Take a recording device—video camera, digital voice recorder, etc.—to ensure that their entire story is preserved, and not left up to anyone’s memory, yours or theirs.
A personal injury incident can be a harrowing ordeal, but with proper evidence preservation, your chances of winning a case against those at fault can make the entire legal situation much easier and more reassuring. A solid case demands solid evidence. And your injuries demand nothing less.