THE FIRST STEP TO TAKE AFTER SUSTAINING A PERSONAL INJURY
The first step immediately following any accident, whether it’s an automobile accident, a slip, trip and fall accident or a products liability accident, in which you were injured by a product that you own hurts you, is to make sure you are okay. Take an inventory of yourself immediately to determine where you are hurt and how bad it seems.
When people are in accidents, an autonomic part of their system, called the flight or fight mechanism, takes over and unconsciously and puts the body on high alert and begins to pump endorphins, steroids and adrenaline into their body and brain, and they gain extra strength and even mask or cover up much of the pain they may normally have.
Often, you don’t know how badly you are hurt when you are in an accident because your body and brain are producing all of these hormones and chemicals to mask much of the potential pain and suffering. Therefore, you should begin to take stock of your body immediately after the accident; if an ambulance arrives and the EMTs recommend that you get medical treatment, don’t be brave about it, just go to the hospital and let the professionals decide if there is anything wrong with you, seriously or otherwise.
Get All The Information You Can From The Person Responsible For Your Personal Injury
Also, while you’re feeling less pain because of the hormones and chemicals racing through your body, get all the information you can from the person who injured you, including their driver’s license information, the car’s license plate numbers and the make and model of their car, and all of their insurance information. Use your smartphone to take pictures of the damage to both cars, a picture of the other driver and, if you’re hurt in any way, pictures of any visible injuries. Someone will also have to call the police to look at the accident and write up a police crash report.
The police may be able to help you with an exchange of information between you and the other driver, if necessary, because such information is important and needs to be obtained at the accident scene. An analysis of how badly you feel and whether you need to go to the hospital in an ambulance, photographs, videos, information about the other driver and their insurance company, the call to the police and the officer’s report; collect anything that seems relevant, because it’s all important.
Seek Medical Care For Your Personal Injury
After that, you will probably need medical care; we’re talking about a personal injury case and it may be that you wake up the next day feeling like a truck ran over you because the muscles and ligaments and tendons of your body are pulled and torn, even though that was not apparent at the time of the accident. Then, you’re off to the emergency room or to your primary doctor for treatment, then to orthopedists and physical therapists; that is the genesis of a personal injury claim, because the most important thing being taking care of your health. Money is secondary to health, but after you’ve done all of the above, you’ll then need to contact an experienced personal injury attorney that has handled thousands of personal injury cases over 20-plus years. This should be your criteria for retaining the services of a personal injury attorney. Giving them one-third of the lump sum of the settlement, as we previously discussed, is cheap at twice the price because you don’t pay for anything upfront; it only comes out of the insurance company settlement later.