Legal claims based on personal injury are always contentious. The person or group you accuse of causing damage will not just sit by and agree to your terms, and many will fight to the bitter end to avoid having to render any form of compensation. This is why you want to hire a reputable attorney who will help you build a strong case for your personal injury claim, but below are some pitfalls you’ll want to avoid.
Reasons You Might Lose Your Personal Injury Claim
Contributory negligence is a situation where a person is found to be both the victim and contributor of an accident. It might also involve numerous parties sharing guilt. When this happens, it is likely that you’ll receive less than full compensation, if you get anything at all. Defense lawyers will try to use contributory negligence to derail your claim, so you’ll need to have a planned response.
Adequate documentation is critical in a court of law. You must be able to show when an accident occurred, the manner in which it transpired, and who is at fault. Documenting every aspect of the incident should be a core part of your litigation strategy, and examples of key files include photographs, police reports, receipts, and medical records.
Misstatements and Speculating
When pursuing an injury claim, if there is something you don’t have an answer to, saying so is crucial. Speculating about something without knowing for certain will lead to gaps in your defense that the opposition will be able to take advantage of. If you’re asked a question that you cannot answer, it is better to simply refuse to comment until you and your attorney have had time to come up with a response.
Communicating on Social Media
While pursuing your injury claim, do not post anything about the case on social media! While it might feel relieving to vent your frustrations to others, anything you say publicly can be used against you in court. While courts didn’t pay much attention to social networks in the past, today they are routinely used as evidence. If you post anything that contradicts your claim, the defense team can use this against you, unraveling your case.
Not Using Legal Representation
Despite the laws that guarantee every American the right to an attorney, even if they cannot afford one, you’d be surprised at the number of people who try to represent themselves. Attempting to do so is a form of arrogance that can cost you dearly.
There is a reason law students spend years in college learning their trade. Winning a case is a form of art and science. Not only do you have to have a deep and profound understanding of the law, but you need to be creative and capable of developing a strategy that anticipates the moves of the defense team. Combine this with the strict court filing requirements and deadlines that have to be met, and it is easy to see why having a good attorney on your side is essential.