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If you’ve been in an accident that you don’t believe was your fault, a personal injury claim may be the best way to seek compensation. However, with so many personal injury cases, not to mention the complexities of the law itself, it can feel a little daunting when you’re right at the start of the process.
To help ease you into the world of personal injury law, here’s a quick guide to what you need to know before making a claim and how you can avoid some of the many pitfalls.
#1. There Are No Guarantees
It doesn’t matter how watertight you believe your case to be. When it comes to personal injury law, there are absolutely no guarantees of success.
With this in mind, it’s worth considering using a no-win-no-fee injury claim offered by some firms like Zinda Law Group. This payment scheme means you are only entitled to pay your lawyer if they are successful. While this cannot improve your chances of success, it does at least remove the financial risk involved with making a claim.
#2. The Clock Is Ticking
From the moment you are in an accident, the clock is ticking. Every case has its own statute of limitations. Each state in the U.S varies when it comes to time limits— Louisiana is one year while Maine is six. It means that if the allotted time has elapsed, you can no longer make a claim, no matter how strong your case was.
#3. Details Are Key
Being involved in an accident can be traumatic, and probably the last thing on your mind in the immediate aftermath is to note down the relevant details. However, these vital pieces of information can either make or break your case.
If possible, try recording as much as possible after the incident, ideally using the standard question word format: what, when, where, how, and who. Also, note any potential witnesses and license plate numbers if the incident involved an automobile.
To take things a step further, if you can provide photographic or film evidence, these small factors can be hugely beneficial down the road.
#4. Report the Incident
Once you have collected the relevant evidence, you must report the incident as quickly as possible. If this occurred on the road, and you were able to swap information with the driver concerned, you need to contact your insurance company immediately. If it was not safe to stop, or the perpetrator failed to stop, you should contact the police right away.
In some cases, the incident may have happened at work or in a public area where liability falls on the management or owner. You should seek out somebody in charge and have the incident logged in their official accident book. Failing to do this could hamper your claim.
#5. Contact a Lawyer
Once all these stages are complete, it’s time to contact a lawyer to assess your case and tell you whether it’s worth pursuing. As we said earlier, there are no guarantees with personal injury law, but if you follow the steps here, you at least give yourself the best possible chance of success.