If you have been injured or prejudiced in a car accident, you may be wondering if you should hire an attorney, or you may have already retained an attorney to represent you. The lawyer would certainly want to have access to some documents to be informed and be prepared in getting the maximum recovery for you. The following is a list of documents that your attorney may want to see during the course of your case.
Your Insurance Policy. Your attorney will want to have access too this document to know the type of recovery you are entitled to, based on the premium that you have paid. There is no reason to panic if you do not have an actual copy of the policy. Your attorney will be able to obtain one, with your approval, from your insurance company.
Evidence of Premium Payments. Your attorney will have to make sure that insurance policy premiums are paid. This is what entitles you to recovery. You will be able to receive bills or statements from insurance companies regarding the due premiums that you should pay on specified dates. Being able to provide your attorney with that correspondence, as well as evidence of your payment (through cancelled checks or a receipt, for example), will help prove that the policy is in force and “paid up.”
Information Exchanged at the Accident Scene. After an accident scene, names and telephone numbers are often exchanged in order to have accessible contact in the future. If you have this information, even if you have already contacted the other parties, make sure to provide it to your attorney.
Information Provided by the Police at the Accident Scene. In many cases, the police are called to a scene of an accident. In those situations, they are required to draft an accident report which often includes a diagram of where the various cars or pedestrians were at the time of the accident. There will also be initial impressions of the on-scene incidents to know what is the cause of the accident. Your attorney should have a copy of the incident report in order to be able to evaluate the details.
Tickets Related to the Accident. You should make sure that your attorney knows whenever you are given ticket because of a car accident. For example, if you were charged with “failure to yield,” your attorney will want to see a copy of your ticket.
Photographs. You also have to take pictures of your damaged car in order to have evidence. If you did not take pictures, a representative of the insurance company may have. If you have pictures in your possession, provide them to your attorney. If the attorney has pictures of the accident, you might as well show them to your lawyers.
Statements. When you encountered an accident, there is a chance that you will be contacted by your attorney. Often, the insurance company will want to obtain a statement from you about the accident. If you were contacted, you have a right to have a copy of any statement you gave. If you have a copy, give it to your attorney. Should you not have access to a copy, you can surely inform your lawyer to get a copy for you.
Note: You should always remember that you cannot be required by your insurance company to give them any piece of evidence. Your doing so might even lead to weaken your claims.
Medical Records. You need to seek medical attention if you have been involved in a car accident and you suffered injuries. If so, your attorney will need copies of your medical records so that he or she can see what your diagnosis is and obtain a feeling for how long it will take you to recover from your injuries. Your attorney will need to have access to your medical records. If you do not have copies of your records, be able to provide your attorney with the name and address of any medical provider you have seen. If given the permission, your attorney can definitely obtain information in your behalf.
Psychological Records. Emotional impact and psychological trauma brought by an accident can also be compensated by the person responsible for the accident. As with medical records, you should provide your attorney with a copy of any psychological records or the names and addresses of your mental health providers.
Pay Records. Lost wages can also be compensated by the person at fault. This can be done by proper information and accurate records given to the lawyer. In order to do so, your attorney will need to calculate how much money you have “lost” as a result of the car accident. Having evidence of your pre-accident earnings and your post-accident earnings will help your attorney make this calculation.