Keep Good Records after Car Accidents
People involved in car accidents or other motor vehicle accidents are well served to keep records of everything related to the accident. Document, save and organize everything that comes into your hands involving the accident. You do not necessarily know what is important until you need it and do not have it or cannot find it.
Set up an accident file. Perhaps, place sub-files separately labeled in the main folder, i.e. “photos,” “estimates,” “medical bills,” “repair bills,” “insurance policies,” “contact phone numbers,” “accident reports,” etc., etc. Every time you speak with someone, make a note of the date and time, identity of the other party including full name, title, address, telephone number or e-mail address.
Keep all of your medical bills and all of your repair bills. Ask your doctor’s office to provide an itemized bill in addition to the “explanation of benefits” your insurance companies send us after the fact. Keep a list of all of the hours you lose from work. Ask your employer to provide you with documentation concerning days and hours missed along with the value of the lost time in terms of your hourly rate or salary. In Tennessee the “Collateral Source Rule” permits one to prove and recover lost wages, medical expenses, repair expenses, towing expenses, etc., whether or not such expenses were paid by insurance or recompensed under sick time or vacation time.
If you authorize the insurance company to obtain copies of your medical records, insist the authorization provide that the insurance company will give you copies of all documents it obtains with the authorization.
Keep a journal with notations about the times and dates of your doctors’ appointments and with descriptions of how you are doing and how your injuries are affecting your day to day activities. As the months pass from the time of the accident, your memory will fade. With any luck, you will fully recover. As you begin to feel better, it will be natural for you to forget the problems you were having during your recuperation.
Above all, seek competent legal representation whenever you have been seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident.
If you need more information about a personal injury, Social Security Disability/SSI, EEOICPA, disability, VA disability, or a workers compensation matter, please contact the Law Offices of Tony Farmer and John Dreiser for a free case evaluation. We can be reached at (865) 584-1211 or (800) 806-4611 or through our website. Our office handles claims throughout East Tennessee.