Steps to Take if You've Been Injured by Someone Else

By Daisy Rogozinsky
May 22, 2022

Being injured by another person can be quite shocking and intense, leaving you unsure of what to do next. Do you prioritize trying to get medical treatment for your injury? Should you try to pursue legal action or seek compensation? How do you proceed when something like this happens to you?

In this article, we’ll offer a step-by-step guide on what you should do if you have been injured by another person.

1. Get Medical Help

The first thing you should do when you’ve been injured is to seek medical care. Whether you visit your doctor, go to urgent care, call an ambulance, or find the nearest emergency room, your number one priority should be getting your injuries treated. 

Not only is this important for your health as a way to take care of your injury so that you can make the best possible recovery, but it can also be useful if you decide later on that you want to make a personal injury claim. Having made a visit to the doctor will give you concrete evidence of your injury that can be used to back up your claim. 

2. Take Notes and Photos

As we mentioned above, personal injury cases require evidence to prove that the at-fault party is indeed responsible for your injuries. In order to help strengthen your case, you’ll want to gather as much evidence as you can to prove your injuries, their extent, how they’ve affected you, their cost, and so on. 

We recommend trying to gather as much of the following evidence as you can:

  • Detailed notes on your injuries and medical treatments including names of doctors and medical professionals that you visit, degree of pain you feel, and any inconveniences you experience from your injuries
  • Receipts for medication and medical devices
  • Records of correspondence with health care providers, including emails and notes on phone calls and doctor’s appointments
  • Medical bills and receipts from any appointments, travel expenses to and from appointments, co-payments, and so on
  • Records of any information about the accident such as how, where, and why it happened
  • Proof of financial losses such as lost wages
  • Names and contact information of witnesses
  • Photos of your injuries
  • Copies of scans and test results

In short, the more evidence you can gather, the better.

3. Speak to a Personal Injury Attorney

Your next step after being injured by another person should be to speak to a personal injury attorney. This is especially recommended if your case involves any kind of tricky component such as:

  • Large sums of damages sought
  • Significant injuries
  • Difficult defendants
  • Missing multiple days of work

An experienced personal injury lawyer will help you with every aspect of your case, from determining if you are likely to win to helping you navigate the process to advocating for you to receive the best possible benefits and payout. 

Note that it’s a good idea to speak to a lawyer even if you aren’t one hundred percent certain that you want to pursue a lawsuit. A good attorney will be able to help give you all of the relevant information that will allow you to decide whether or not it’s a good idea for you to follow through and file a lawsuit.

4. Decide if You Want to Pursue Compensation

Once you’ve spoken to a lawyer, you should be ready to make a decision about whether or not you’re going to pursue compensation through personal injury insurance and/or a civil lawsuit. If you do decide that you want to take legal action, you can expect your next steps to be as follows.

  • Your lawyer will investigate your claim and look over your medical records and all of the evidence you’ve gathered
  • Your lawyer will send a demand letter to the other side’s insurance company or legal counsel
  • There will likely be a process of trying to settle outside of court. Many personal injury cases are actually settled without ever getting into a proper lawsuit, saving both sides time and money.
  • If you do not succeed at settling out of court, your lawyer will proceed to file a personal injury lawsuit.
  • Once the lawsuit is filed, both sides will have an opportunity to investigate all of the evidence at hand and the claims being made.
  • Next, the two sides’ lawyers will try to settle through negotiation. 
  • If this doesn’t work, they will move on to a mediation process.
  • If this also does not work, the case will go to a trial where it will receive a final decision.

Again, it’s important to note that most personal injury cases do not make it this far, and that it is likely you will be able to reach a settlement with the other side without ever having to go to court.

Featured Personal Injury Lawyers

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