There are nearly 3 million car accidents that occur in the US, and the average cost for property damage is $7,000. Fatal and nonfatal injuries can cost about $1 million and about $60,000, respectively. When you are involved in a car accident, you need to be fully prepared or you risk losing the money you may receive or reducing any money you owe.
The only way to prove you are innocent in a car crash is to, well provide proof. This may be difficult to sort and complete on your own, However, if you gather these documents for lawyers who can create a case for you, your chances of winning the case increase significantly.
Not sure what documents you need to help strengthen a car accident case when you’re not at fault? This guide will tell you.
1. Medical Bills and Records
Many car accidents result in injuries and those who are injured go to the hospital for treatment. If you go to the hospital for treatment, you need to show the medical records to your attorney.
Your medical records and bills will show what treatment you received after the accident. You should also include any physical therapy, psychiatric, or psychological care given. The medical records help attorneys formulate the total cost you spent or may continue to spend in the future.
Attorneys also need your records to see if you have any underlying medical conditions a doctor diagnosed you with prior to the accident. Pre-existing conditions may affect how much you may receive in a claim.
2. Car Insurance Policy
One of the most crucial documents you should hand to your lawyer is your car insurance policy. Your policy will let your attorney know the coverage you have on your car and if it is still current. Even if you are not at fault for an accident, providing this information can help your case.
For example, when you provide proof that you pay your insurance premium payments on time, you have concrete evidence your policy is current or paid for in full. This looks good in the eyes of the court.
3. Information Provided at the Accident and Any Witness Statements
Following a car accident, all parties in the accident will exchange their information. You may exchange full names, insurance, license number, phone number, and information about your vehicle.
Information you receive from those involved in the accident must be saved and sent to your attorney as well. This includes any statements from witnesses and any other documents they provide.
Remember to make copies of these documents. Information you get from others can either hurt or help your case. You can get fast legal help with an attorney who can put these documents in order when building your case.
4. Police Report
After an accident occurs, a cop will always come to the scene to provide a report after hearing both sides of the story (or more) from those involved in the accident. The incident report includes pertinent information that captures what happened, including the officer’s opinion on who or what was the cause of the accident. You will find:
- Officer’s thoughts on traffic violation rules
- A diagram that shows where people and cars were at the scene
- Completed statements
It is important to note that police records are fluid reports. They can and will change as officials find more evidence. Your attorney can depict where you may stand the best with this document as they draw a case for you.
Photos and videos are also vital when building cases. All signs of damage to you or your car are best captured with these methods. It is better to take these photos or videos during the time of the accident. However, you can still take them after the accident, just do not wait too long.
You can get help from your attorney and insurance provider to capture photos of the car. In the event your car is towed and you do not get the chance to take pictures of your vehicle on the spot, it is likely your insurance provider has them. You will need to call them and speak with them to get a copy.
Creating a narrative with words is not effective on its own. When you have photos of the damage to you or your car, the visual allows attorneys to better understand the facts concerning the accident.
6. Tickets or Fines Received
Any tickets or fines you receive from an officer who comes to the scene should be given to you your attorney as well. In the event that cop gives you a ticket for failing to stop at a red light or turning when you shouldn’t, these citations may be used against you.
Sometimes these tickets have nothing to do with an accident when you are not to blame, but it may get construed as such. A good attorney will revive these documents to create a case proving your innocence.
7. Pay Records
Car accidents can affect your life long after it has passed. If you are seriously hurt in an accident, you may end up having to take an extended amount of time off work. In some cases, you wind up losing your job. No matter which situation you face, you are entitled to compensation due to lost income.
An attorney will work with you to determine the amount of money you deserve to have as a settlement. Providing proof with pay records will make this easier. Attorneys can take this information from you using your tax records, payroll records, checks, direct deposits, or any other financial documents in relation to your job.
The Importance of Bringing Documents for Lawyers
You are almost certain to lose a case if you fail to provide documents to help your case. When you go to court, you need to prove that you are innocent. Knowing you are innocent is not enough. It’s best to hire an experienced attorney who can help you.
Providing documents for lawyers you work with will help them and help your chances of winning the case. Without those documents, you will have a hard time.
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