Accidents causing serious injuries happen everday.  The proper way to respond can make the difference between those  lives that are restored and those that aren’t.  This is an imortant list of 5 things to do & not do regardless of whether the accident involves a car, motorcycle, pedestrian, unsafe workplace, defective product or a medical mistake.

1.  If you are hurt get proper medical attention IMMEDIATELY.  When you go to a hospital emergency room or medi-merge tell them exactly HOW you were injured and WHAT body parts are causing you pain.  Thereafter follow the instructions given.  (Waiting too long, failing to document how the accident happened or giving incomplete medical information is very damaging to your health & ability to financially recover).

2. Document the happening of the accident properly.  Take the time to call the police and insist upon a POLICE REPORT in a motor vehicle, motorcycle, premises or pedestrian accident.  Fill out a report with an employer, called a FIRST REPORT, as to how you were injured on the job or using workplace tools.  Make sure the information you give is complete and accurate.  Don’t argue with the others involved.  Explain yourself cleraly & accurately to those that are taking the report.  Make sure witnesses are reflected by name, address and phone number. After the report is issued take the time to read it for mistakes and correct them.  (A failure to do these things means that the happening of the accident is now memorialized innacurately.  This will cost you time & money down the road).

3. Understand who has insurance and how the layers of coverage work.  There are varuious types of insurance coverage: automobile insurance, health insurance, workers compensation insurance, med-pay coverage, union coverage, state &/or private disabilty insurance, Medicare, Medicaid &  charity care.  Each of these insurances has different layers, benefits and responsibilites.  The use of some is mandatory while the use of others is prohibited.  Some are wise to use and other unwise.  (Speak to a lawyer versed in personal injury law to guide you in this regard.  Even the doctors themselves don’t know all the ins and outs.)

4. Follow the doctors directives FULLY.  If you don’t quit on them they won’t quit on you.  Don’t stop treating until they discharge you from their care, refer you to someone else or you legitimately feel fully recoverd.  If you’re not feeling better after some time…speak up.  Perhaps a new approach or different doctor or type of doctor is needed.  It is not a lawyer’s job to be your doctor, but your attorney can and should be a good source of advice on the proper path of medical treatment you are receiving. (A failure to complete treatment or follow a doctor’s advice will be held against you should you need to pursue a case for your injuries.)

5.  When  all is said & done if you are not permanently injured, but have made a full and complete recovery…GREAT!  You got good treatment and can move on with your life.  For those that are not so lucky, don’t feel embarrassed by the need to purse a claim.  A formal claim by a good personal injury lawyer may be the only way to get your life resotred. All good personal inury lawyers will always agree to meet you without fee.)

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