If you are injured in an accident caused by the carelessness of another person, you should not wait to contact a lawyer. Most good lawyers will never pressure you to file a lawsuit; however, all good lawyers will want to begin investigating your case right away. Swift action immediately after an accident can make a world of difference in your case.
For example, if any surveillance cameras captured your accident, your lawyer will want to obtain a copy of the video as soon as possible. Most public and private surveillance video is erased or recorded over regularly. If you do not request a copy of a video within 30 days of your accident, you can safely bet that any helpful footage that once existed will be lost.
Another reason to take early action is so your lawyer can take photographs of the accident scene as soon as possible. If your accident happens in November, when the ground is bare and the leaves are off the trees, you do not want to wait until January to take photographs when the ground may be covered in snow. Similarly, you do not want to put off taking photographs until the springtime when the leaves begin to grow back. Ideally, you want any photographs to accurately represent the way the scene looked on or around the date of the accident.
Your lawyer will also want to begin interviewing witnesses almost immediately. People remember things better soon after an event and tend to forget over time. Police officers usually record their observations and findings in police reports. But occasionally police officers will also remember details that they did not include in their report. As with other witnesses, it is important to reach out to law enforcement officials as soon as possible to explore their independent memory of your accident and your personal injuries.
Finally, memories are not the only things that fade over time. Sometimes other important evidence gets lost or disappears. For instance, in an automobile accident case there may be marks in the roadway that will likely fade away over time. Some minor but important physical injuries, such as cuts and bruises, will usually begin to heal soon after the accident and become less obvious every day. Snow and ice will melt and other dangerous conditions can be altered and fixed. By seeking legal counsel right away, you will give your personal injury lawyer the valuable time he or she needs to examine and document important evidence.
Given all the stress of being injured and having to deal with everything that follows, from taking care of yourself to dealing with insurance issues, make sure you hire a personal injury lawyer who you like and make sure you can communicate with them and their staff. If you have any questions, please feel free to call Braden Clement at 784-3200 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This article is not legal advice but should be considered as general guidance in the area of personal injury law. You can contact us at 207.784.3200. Skelton Taintor & Abbott is a full service law firm providing legal services to individuals, companies, and municipalities throughout Maine. It has been in operation since its founding in 1853.