The Path To Obtaining Financial Compensation In The Aftermath Of A Baltimore Automobile Accident: Phase I
During the last 25 years or so of handling automobile accident claims, I have found that a frequently and commonly asked question -perhaps the most common- is: “What are the next steps in this process?” And of course, it’s perfectly understandable that a person, who has just been injured in a Baltimore car accident might be somewhat confused, uncertain, or indeed, even bewildered about their legal rights, responsibilities, and what the future may hold. When the personal injury causing event is a significant or catastrophic injury, these fears, concerns, and anxiety is seemingly doubled, tripled, or increased by an order of magnitude. The phases in the claim process are discussed in some additional detail, below.
Baltimore Personal Injury claim, Phase I: Recuperation and Investigation
My standard advisory, to essentially every other person involved in a personal injury claim, a work-related injury claim, or any type of potential legal claim or case that could involve injury to any part of the human anatomy, is simple, straightforward, and unhesitating:
- Get prompt, competent medical care
- Adhere to the advice of your chosen doctor, or medical professional, in each of its particulars
The first step, always, is to begin the process of recuperation and recovery from one’s injuries. The unique thing about this advice is that it’s simple. It’s uniform. It applies in every case, and there’s just no common sense reason not to follow it. While this is my standard advice to anyone who finds themselves in this situation, I understand that there are always competing concerns and other concerns held by the injured person:
- Who pays for the car damage after an accident?
- Who pays for the medical bills after a car accident?
- If I’m hurt in a car accident and I have to miss work, am I entitled to collect my lost wages?
There are others to be sure. Of course, the ultimate frequently asked question is: “How much am I going to get?” The follow-up is “When?” So, the next steps in any personal injury case necessarily include what is needed, and what should be done to ensure that the injured person gets back on their feet as quickly as possible.
As outlined above, the initial phase is one of prompt medical care, attendance, treatment, and recovery. While the process of recuperation is unfolding, I collect information about the automobile accident. This would typically be a police report, ambulance records, emergency, and EMT records, if available. Potentially, secondary evidence such as body worn camera, or CCTV footage, and even more infrequently, but possibly video surveillance footage, captured on a device or system owned by a private person might be available. I collect information regarding the other driver and significantly- their insurance company. I collect information regarding the injured individual’s insurance company for purposes or pursuing a separate personal injury protection insurance claim. I assemble and collect photographs, vehicle estimates, medical bills, wage loss documentation, photographs of the injured individual and any other information that might be pertinent to the case. There are no hard and fast rules, it can typically take two months -or a range of six weeks to three month-s for most otherwise reasonably healthy individuals to recover from significant, but not serious injuries that occur in most automobile accidents. Most automobile accidents involve injuries to the muscles, ligaments tendons, and other connective tissues in our bodies that hold our bones and joints together and enable our body to move. It’s these types of injuries that typically will resolve, or at least get back to their pre-injury baseline if that is the course within that six weeks to three month timeframe.