If you suffer a legitimate injury as a result of a workplace mishap or personal injury accident, you just want to collect what you’re owed while you focus on your health. It may seem like it should be a pretty straightforward process since you have a legitimate and compensable injury, but what if you are the only person who can verify your version of events? You’d be surprised how often this happens, and even more surprised at how often an employer’s insurance company contests or outright denies payment to an employee who was the only person who can testify as to what happened on the day of the accident. In today’s blog, we explain how to strengthen your injury claim in the event nobody else can back up your version of events.
When You’re The Only Witness To An Accident
In a perfect world, the insurance company would take your word at face value, especially if you are the injured party and the only one who can attest to what happened that day. At the same time, insurance companies are very aware that workers’ compensation fraud exists, so they aren’t keen on approving every single claim that comes into their office. Since your testimony is the only evidence they have to work with, if something sounds off, they may elect to deny your claim. To prevent this, you want to do everything you can to make your legitimate claim sound as credible as possible. Here are some ways to do that in the event there are no other witnesses to the accident.
1. Hire A Lawyer – A lawyer will be able to take your version of events and present them in such a way that it covers all your bases. Your lawyer will know what needs to be included in your injury report, what “red flags” to avoid when filing the claim, and what types of evidence adjusters look for when paying out a claim. Hiring a lawyer is the best way to strengthen your injury claim in the event that nobody else can verify your story.
2. Experts – While it all may sound like noise to you, a trained mechanic may be able to diagnose an issue with your carburetor just by listening to your car with the engine on. That’s because they are an expert in the field and have years of experience working with cars. They don’t need to see the problem with their eyes to understand what’s wrong. Similarly, there are what’s known as accident reconstruction experts that can help vouch for the validity of your claim without having witnessed the accident. Using their expertise in fields like engineering or physics, they can help bring credibility to your claim by verifying that your version of events sounds plausible. A lawyer can help connect you with these expert witnesses should you need them for your case.
3. Potential Video Evidence – While there may not have been any people around to verify your claim, there’s a chance that the accident was captured on camera. If it’s a work injury, you probably know where the cameras are and your employer can easily see if the accident was caught on tape, but you will be less familiar if you suffered a personal injury. If you were injured near any businesses or restaurants, your lawyer can check with these places to see if they have any footage that could be helpful for your case.
4. Write Down Details – When it’s your word alone, you want your case to be airtight, and even though you may think you have a great memory, some of the smaller details about the accident could slip from memory. If your version of events changes, even if it pertains to small details and not the accident itself, it can throw the legitimacy of your entire claim into question. That’s why we recommend that injured parties write down details about their accident. Not only will putting pen to paper help you remember, it can act as a handy reference if you need it. Document the who, what, where, why, when and how of the accident, and the steps you took immediately before and after the injury so all details remain consistent.
If you can do these four things, we’re confident you’ll put yourself in a great position to earn a valid injury claim. For more information, or for assistance filing and collecting your injury award, reach out to Dean and the team at Margolis Law Firm today.
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