Many people encounter accidents. In a small number of cases, those accidents profoundly affect your life and change it for the worse. Whether those changes are temporary or permanent, you may want to speak to a lawyer. Launching a successful personal injury claim may require you to keep medical records. Here are some tips for staying on top of yours.
Seek Medical Advice ASAP
Your body can sometimes delay its normal responses following an accident. When it encounters a lot of stress, the hormones it produces may mask pain. Additionally, injuries that aren't immediately obvious can worsen over time. Because of these factors, it's important to seek medical advice ASAP. Heading to an emergency room gives you the chance to undergo a physical examination that reveals hidden injuries. You may also benefit from imaging, such as x-rays showing newly broken bones.
Taking photos of your injuries and documenting how they feel may also act as useful evidence. This is especially important for bruising, which may rest above sprains or areas with broken bones. Make sure you continue to take photos if there are changes to your injuries. For example, a common side-effect of certain splints is cellulitis. If a condition such as cellulitis does develop, take photos and keep records of all associated hospital visits and medical interventions.
Talk to a Counsellor
The effects of an accident aren't always physical. Some are incredibly traumatising and you may need to seek counselling to tackle your trauma. Speaking to a counsellor isn't just a useful way for overcoming trauma. It also provides your lawyer with a record of how the accident has affected you. If your accident causes a condition such as PTSD or insomnia, it's especially important to seek advice from a counsellor. Having a professional diagnosis empowers you to seek financial compensation for the harm caused to you by someone else.
Eventually, you'll need to disclose your records to your lawyer. Knowing that the other party's legal or insurance team is also likely to see them is important. Additionally, so will any judge or decision maker involved in the case. Disclosing your records requires your consent. You may need to disclose previous medical records too so that you can demonstrate that your current state was caused by the accident. Your lawyer will discuss how your records will be used. You may need to start the disclosure process early into the case, as full records are sometimes hard to unveil.