After a serious accident, many victims count on compensation from their insurance company— or the at-fault party—to pay medical expenses, repair property damage, provide needed financial relief while recovering from injuries, and more.
However, filing a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent party or even a claim with your own insurance company doesn't guarantee you'll receive the remuneration you need to move forward after a devastating accident.
The outcome of a personal injury case or insurance claim relies heavily on the strength of evidence to support them. Carefully documenting and preserving evidence greatly increases the chance of a successful resolution.
We've outlined the types of evidence you'll need to prove the facts of your case.
Documented Evidence That Helps Your Case
Generally speaking, the more evidence you collect in a personal injury case, the better. The following evidence is particularly helpful:
- Police report: After an accident, always make sure to request a copy of the police report for your records. Although police reports aren't admissible in court, information in the report—such as citations issued or an officer's observations at the scene—can be persuasive to an insurance adjuster.
- Photos of the accident scene: If you're not seriously injured, it's wise to take as many photos of the accident scene as possible. Capture the placement of the vehicles involved in the crash and any property damage to your vehicle, as well as evidence of any relevant weather, road, or lighting conditions at the scene of the accident. It's also a good idea to take photos from a variety of angles, so you can later choose the ones that best showcase the evidence you want presented. If you're unable to take photos immediately after the accident due to injuries, return to the scene as soon as you're able to at least photograph any skid marks or debris still in the road.
- Photos of your injuries: These images are absolutely essential to building a strong personal injury case. Take photos of your injuries at the scene of the accident and during any post-accident medical evaluation, as well as any related injuries that develop later, such as bruises.
- Medical records: If you're pursuing compensation for accident-related injuries, there's nothing more persuasive than carefully-documented medical records that detail your injuries, prognosis, and treatment. Save receipts from all medical expenses—such as doctor or emergency room visits, specialist consultations, medical-related travel costs, and so on—to help ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.
- Clothing: It may seem silly to save the clothing you were wearing at the time of an accident, but torn or bloodied items can paint a vivid picture to a jury if you choose to take your case to trial.
- Property damage information: Save any repair estimates or receipts related to damage to your vehicle.
- Personal journal: Jotting down notes about your injuries in a journal help convey the seriousness of your injuries and how they affect your daily life to an insurance adjuster or jury.
Expert and Eyewitness Accounts Are Valuable
If witnesses at the scene of the accident can speak to your version of events, they can substantially strengthen the validity of your insurance claim or lawsuit. Make sure to write down witnesses' contact information, including full names, addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses so your attorney can contact them at a later date, if necessary.
Testimony from expert witnesses, such as medical experts or accident reconstructionists, can also be helpful at trial. Your personal injury attorney should be able to connect you with relevant experts.
Were You Injured in an Accident?
If you were injured in an accident brought about by the negligence of another person, Sevenish Law can help you fight for the compensation you need and deserve. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a free initial consultation to discuss your case. Don't wait; Indiana's statute of limitation laws restrict the time you have to file a personal injury suit. Waiting too long might allow important evidence to degrade.