Review This Checklist to Make Sure You’re Prepared for Your First Personal Injury Consultation

Synopsis

  • A good lawyer will have their own list of questions to ask an accident
    victim but when a person arrives to an initial consultation meeting with
    as much information as possible about how the accident happened, it only
    helps to serve as a strong foundation to making a case.
  • At Wagner Reese, we will want to know everything that you know about your
    accident event and how it has impacted your life.
  • To get ready for a meeting with us, review our consultation checklist so
    we can help you identify any further medical history or insurance documentation
    that is missing and suggest ideas on how you could obtain missing information
    that will help build your case.
  • It is best to seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter
    and come prepared to share all the details of your personal injury experience.

Be Prepared for Your First Personal Injury Consultation

Whether it involves a motor vehicle fender-bender, workplace incident,
or trip-and-fall at your favorite outdoor restaurant, accidents caused
by others happen each day that can result in serious personal injuries.
When these accidents occur, it is a good idea for victims and their families
to collect as much information as possible about the accident event and
make plans to talk with an experienced personal injury lawyer about the
incident. Although a good lawyer will have his or her own list of questions
to ask, coming with information about how the accident happened, photographs,
a dated timeline in regard to medical treatments or conditions you have
since been diagnosed with, insurance information and any notes you have
been taking regarding life after the accident will help an attorney build
your case from the start.

Since your case may be settled even before a lawsuit is filed, you will
want to present as much information as possible to avoid a lengthy and
stressful trial and jury verdict. Yes, the majority of lawsuits are settled
before they get to trial, but what happens in your case depends on the
facts and what information is presented from all the parties involved.

You can use this checklist as a starting point for your meeting with us
and get a sense of the useful evidence needed to make your claim. The
Wagner Reese team will then be able to use this checklist and help consult
with you on further documentation that is missing, pieces you might need
to request and how you could obtain it to make your case.

Personal Injury Meeting Checklist

Official reports

  • Accident reconstruction reports
  • Police reports
  • Private investigation reports
  • 911 dispatch call recordings
  • Reports by other law enforcement agencies

Photos, video, or audio taken at the scene

  • Take photos and video of the scene
  • Photos of injuries
  • Photos of property damage
  • Photos of people present
  • Road/scene condition photos

Statements and notes

  • Witness statements
  • Your journal or notes
  • Victim statements
  • Calendar of events of how life has changed or been disrupted since accident

Medical reports

  • Initial doctor’s examination
  • Second opinions
  • Specialist’s reports

History and research

  • Evidence of past violations or safety concerns
  • Vehicle or machinery service history

Physical evidence

  • Clothing worn during the incident
  • Damaged items

Insurance

  • Any communication from insurance companies (emails, letters, voicemails)
  • Motor vehicle insurance card and policy holder information
  • Other party’s insurance information

Bills and invoices

  • Medical bills
  • Vehicle repair invoices

Other forms

  • Several W2 forms (showing wages lost)

When you visit with us at
Wagner Reese, we will want to know everything that you know about the event, including
specifics on how the accident has impacted your life. To do this, we are
more than happy to talk with you, without charging a fee for the consultation.
Even if it is a case that we are not able to take for some reason, we
can often make suggestions about what can be done or even refer accident
victims out to other legal resources that may be able to provide assistance.

Understanding the Statute of Limitations for Your Case

Statute of limitations is an important time limit to consider before you
set up your meeting with a personal injury attorney. This term refers
to the need to file a lawsuit within a certain time frame. In Indiana,
most injury cases, such as auto accidents or slip-and-fall claims, have
a two-year statute of limitations, but not all. Some lawsuits, such as
claims filed against the government require a notice within a shorter
period of time. The time begins to run when a cause of action accrues.
A good example is someone negligently running into your car. The statute
of limitation begins on the day of the accident. But sometimes you have
no way of knowing that you have a cause of action for years, such as discovering
ill effects from taking a medication or being exposed to chemicals. It
is important to seek the advice of an attorney and doctor if you suspect
that you are having problems but don’t know for sure if it relates
to the negligent actions of another.

Fighting for Maximum Recovery Related to Your Loss

Once we have reviewed your case and consulted with you, like most personal
injury law firms, our fee is taken as a percentage of the recovery that
is made and paid at the time of settlement. If a lawsuit is filed on your
behalf, the percentage usually increases, due the increased amount of
work required in prosecuting the lawsuit. However, if we are unable to
recover money for you, you do not pay us anything. The actual fee charged
in your case will depend on the circumstances of our case and can range
anywhere from 20 percent to 40 percent. If you have questions about the
most common types of cases we handle, we have included a brief list below.

While we hope all of this information is helpful, it is intended for informational
purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice in any way.
Instead, seek competent legal counsel for advice on any legal matter and
come prepared to share all the details of your personal injury experience.

We Can Help You If You Have Been Injured

The attorneys at Wagner Reese have more than 50 years of experience in
representing people just like you who have been through a difficult injury
and accident experience. When you hire one of our expert lawyers to represent
you in your personal injury or work accident claims, we will show the
insurance companies you’re serious about receiving the full and
fair settlement or jury award to which you are entitled.

If you would like legal advice on an accident, our attorneys will review
your information after you call us at (888) 204-8440 to schedule a free
consultation or share additional details with us by
submitting our online form.