If you've had trouble with the at-fault driver's insurer, then speaking to an attorney is the right move to make. If you have been injured through no fault of your own, speak to an auto accident lawyer, but first, do the things below. That way, your lawyer can get started on your case right away and bring you closer to the financial settlement you deserve.
Questionnaires to Complete
Some auto accident lawyers provide clients with a questionnaire. The information gives accident victims a chance to explain how their accident happened and gives them a good idea of what the lawyer needs to proceed with their case. You can help make things easier for both you and your lawyer by completing the questionnaire and taking it with you to the first appointment.
Jot Down Your Own Questions
It's easy to get to the appointment and forget to ask important questions. To help you with this and other tasks, consider grabbing a notebook to be used only for your accident issues. You can use the notebook to write down questions for the lawyer, your doctor, and more. You can also use it as a journal to record your thoughts and write about issues as you try to recover from your injuries. Doing so can only help your lawyer and improve your chances of being paid what you deserve. For example, if you have been prescribed medication for an accident-related problem, use your notebook to record any side effects. Be sure and share those issues with your lawyer too.
Hold Off on Speaking to the Other Side
You might be surprised at how aggressive the other driver's insurance company will be when trying to contact you. They will probably be offering you a settlement once it's clear who was at fault for the accident. However, you don't need to speak to them without legal support so put off any recorded phone calls from the other side before you speak to your lawyer.
Start a Packet for Your Lawyer
In addition to a notebook for questions and taking notes, you can also get things off to a quicker start if you bring the following pieces of information to your lawyer at your first meeting:
- The accident or police report from the responding law enforcement agency.
- Insurance information from both you and the other driver (this is sometimes on the accident report too).
- A list of all medical treatments you have had, how long you were hospitalized, what future treatments you expect, and how much you have been billed for your medical care so far.
- A repair estimate for your vehicle if you have it.
- Any witness information you have.
To find out more, ask your auto accident lawyer.