After suffering catastrophic injuries in a car accident, a slip and fall or in malpractice cases or suffering any type of serious injuries caused by someone else's negligence, for example, a traumatic brain injury or back injuries, you may assume your health care providers or others involved will document your information accurately. Although you may not think that it is your own responsibility to document your accident injury, doing it could prove to be the tipping point to a victory when negotiating with the insurance adjuster handling your claim, resulting in financial compensation for your accident injuries and economic damages.
The advantages of writing in a diary every day and keeping track of medical bills, medical treatment or lost wages after being involved in an accident, overcome the expended time, energy and discipline it takes to keep it up. By using a pain journal, you can track, recall and report critical bits of information for your personal injury claim.
An injury journal can be used as evidence when making insurance claims or dealing with defense attorneys. With the help of a daily diary, as mentioned, you can:
- Track everyday treatment, symptoms, evolution, sudden outbreaks and relapses
- Document the visits you made to the doctor, therapist or personal injury lawyers and track the mileage for possible reimbursement
- Rely on it to recall and present the details of your serious injury and accident case despite the passage of time
- Record the carelessness of any of the other parties involved in your case
In your personal injury case diary, you should make honest, accurate and short daily records. Be specific about:
- The physical limitations caused by the accident which hinder your work, your life at home and your usual routines
- The emotional distress you suffer
- The effects of defective products that were possibly involved in your accident
- All conversations with your doctor, insurer or with anyone involved in your accident
Make your diary entries a habit by writing at the same time each day and date and sign them. To preserve the details of your life post-injury, use descriptive words to document how you feel each day, what type of pain you feel, how intense it is, where you feel it and how often. To improve your diary entries, you can ask your personal injury attorney to look over your journal and offer expert advice.
Diligent and correct entries can provide valuable information to insurance companies or juries, if your case is taken to court, about the severity of your personal injuries, hardships, physical and mental health, financial stability, progress in recovery and the work you are putting into the legal process. Solid, strong personal injury cases could result in obtaining fair compensation for your losses and damages.
Injured in a Car Accident in Miami? Keep a Pain Journal and Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
Keeping a pain journal, documenting your suffering and treatment is a great tool because it provides information about what you have experienced. However, in case you intent to keep it private, understand that during a personal injury lawsuit you may have to reveal its existence and provide a copy to the defense. In most personal injury cases, courts deem injury journals relevant documents for the injury claims, and they must be disclosed to the opposing trial attorneys. If the information recorded is inconsistent or contradicts your oral testimony, your credibility may be diminished.
The defense personal injury attorneys may take out of context entries unrelated to the injury accident and use them against your injury claims. Also, the defense will look for information that shows your injuries are not serious, even if they are brain injuries or spinal cord injuries, or for information that has nothing to do with your injuries but can be used against you when you go to trial. However, your experienced attorney will be by your side and will make sure to object to the questions that are not relevant to the claims process and injuries.
Hiring a personal injury lawyer from our firm, The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary, after an accident if other parties involved were negligent or reckless, for example, the other driver was uninsured, ensures that any accident victims have the chance to recover fair compensation.