It sometimes feels as if videos of every joy and mishap on Earth are both available and unavoidable. “Pictures or it didn’t happen,” the internet likes to say. Of course, not everything about everyone really is online, so there are still good reasons to be smart about collecting information you’ll need later.
In his new book, personal injury attorney Bryan VanMeveren explains how (and when) to avoid lawyer fees by settling your own personal injury case. Along the way, the book offers a good example of the real advantage of thinking ahead and clearly about documentation.
How to properly document your car accident
A chapter of “Get It Settled Without a Lawyer!” lists what you should consider documenting immediately after you’ve been in an accident.
- Its exact location.
- The position of both (or all) vehicles before and after.
- The appearance of the accident scene immediately after.
- Pictures of signs, obstructions, or anything that might have contributed.
- The names and addresses of everyone (passengers and drivers) involved.
- The names and addresses of any witnesses.
Among other places, you’ll use this documentation in the package you’ll give to the insurance company of the driver at fault, but other uses also emerge as “Get It Settled Without a Lawyer!” continues.
Note that you’ll probably need to promptly consider filing a report if police or state troopers haven’t already done so. Most departments don’t accept such reports after 72 hours after the accident, if not sooner.
Rethinking your options in personal injury cases
“Get It Settled Without a Lawyer!” is likely to hold plenty of surprises for most readers.
In fact, in the first chapter, personal injury attorney VanMeveren answers the obvious question, “Isn’t It Dumb To Teach People How To Settle Their Own Personal Injury Cases?” As in the rest of the book, his answers are both easy to understand and surprising.
You can get your copy of “Get It Settled Without a Lawyer!” as a PDF or as a Kindle edition.