Things can be hectic after a car accident. You may not understand what happened to cause the driver that hit you to do so — you only know you need to get things back to normal again. To do that, though, focus on healing from your injuries and preserving your right to be compensated. A big part of having a good personal injury case is documenting the accident, your recovery, and your prognosis going forward. To learn more about doing that, read on.
Begin a Notebook
Writing things down using a pen and paper is making a comeback. (However, if you are impacted by the accident in such a way that writing is impossible, you might consider recording on a device, typing on your phone or a tablet, or getting a friend to help you). Not only is it a good way to retain facts but many experts say that it can be very therapeutic too. It's not necessary to get fancy with your notebook. A spiral-bound and lined inexpensive notebook will do. What is important, though, is that you use it regularly to make notes.
What Goes into Your Accident Notebook?
Begin by writing down what you remember about the day of the accident such as your destination, the weather, time of day, who you were with, etc. Try to remember what happened at the time of the accident and afterward. You may be aware of onlookers — these may be potential witnesses to the wreck. To add to your notes, obtain the official accident report from the law enforcement agency that responded to the scene. Caution: if you are suffering from anxiety disorders and recalling these traumatic events are uncomfortable, skip this part.
Medical Treatment Notes
If you are like most accident victims, the medical part of the notebook will hold the most information. Every time you visit your doctor, make notes about it in your notebook. List all medications (and their side effects), tests, procedures, and more. Don't forget to write about the way your injuries make you feel. Feelings, though frequently discounted, can be equated to dollars and cents because the misery brought on by the other driver is what pain and suffering is all about.
These notes will be useful at several stages of your case. From when you speak to your personal injury attorney to the negotiations with the other driver's insurer, you will refer to your notes. From your deposition to your time on the witness stand, your notes are there to refresh your memories. Speak to a car accident attorney for more ideas on preserving those important facts in your case.