Why Preserve Evidence in Florida Personal Injury Cases?

Why Preserve Evidence in Florida Personal Injury Cases?

If you’ve been hurt in an accident, you may wonder whether you need to preserve evidence and why you should. A Florida personal injury attorney will tell you that even the smallest piece of evidence could emerge as a key to victory in your case.

Learn how to preserve evidence that could be important to your case and why it matters.

Why Preserving Evidence Matters for Your Personal Injury Case

If you were not at fault for your injury, the evidence is key to proving the validity of your claim to the insurance company, or jury if the case goes to court.

A photograph or witness statement can greatly influence jury verdicts, and insurance companies will also want to see that evidence.

Another reason to preserve evidence is that by law, you’re obligated to do so if you “reasonably anticipated” litigation. Should you fail to preserve relevant evidence, the court may impose sanctions or dismiss your case entirely under the Florida Rules of Civil Procedure.

Document the Accident Scene

After a car accident or other accident, documenting the accident scene may be the last thing on your mind. However, if you can, take pictures of every piece of evidence that seems important to you.

Photograph damage to your car, your injuries, tire skid marks, and anything else that catches your eye. Are tree branches obscuring a stop sign? Take a picture of that too.

The images can become critical evidence for insurance claims and lawsuits.

It’s also a good idea to write down exactly what happened while the details are fresh in your mind. If you don’t have a notebook and pen handy, take notes on your phone.

Talk to Witnesses

Witnesses can be hard to find, but you may be able to speak to witnesses if your accident happened at a busy place. Try to track down anyone who saw the accident and may be willing to speak with you.

It can be helpful to speak with people who witnessed the accident from different angles.

Ask each witness if they’re willing to give you their name and phone number. Your personal injury lawyer may want to speak with them as well.

Look for Physical Evidence

Physical evidence could be the deciding factor in your personal injury case. In a car accident, broken glass, damage to your car, and destroyed belongings all serve as important evidence for your Florida personal injury attorney.

Take your car to an auto shop and ask for an estimate of damages and the cost of repair. The insurance company will consider this estimate when determining a settlement.

See Your Doctor

See a doctor after an accident, no matter how small, even if you don’t think you’re badly hurt. Adrenaline and shock can make it hard to notice injuries, but you could wake up in pain the next morning or even days later.

If you fail to see a doctor immediately, the insurance company or court might try to argue that your injuries weren’t really all that bad — and reduce your settlement or award.

Seeing a doctor is also important because they can estimate how long you’ll need to recover before you can return to work. The insurance company may cover your lost wages until your doctor says you’re well enough to go back to your job. 

Contact an Experienced Attorney with Warner & Fitzmartin for Help With Your Personal Injury Case

If you’ve been in an accident and need help preserving evidence, contact a Florida personal injury attorney from Warner & Fitzmartin today. We have years of experience representing clients in personal injury cases in the Lake Worth, FL, area.

Call us at (561) 803-0167 for your free consultation today.

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