Car Accident Attorney Evidence Discovery
Evidence Collection and DiscoveryWere you recently injured in a Portland, OR car accident? If you were injured and may need to file a Portland personal injury claim, you will want to document as much of the accident as possible. Preserving evidence can be a difference maker in your personal injury case- having good documentation, pictures, and evidence will be invaluable in supporting your personal injury claim. Here is some advice from Portland personal injury attorney Bryan Dawson on what you can do to gather information that may be useful later. For more information on how the Portland personal injury lawyers at Dawson Law Group can help you with your car accident or other personal injury, visit our Car Accident Claims page. For answers to frequently asked questions about car accidents, visit our Car Accident FAQs page.
Official ReportsIf you are in a crash that causes any injuries or over $1,500 in damage to any vehicle, you are legally required to fill out a DMV report as well as a police report. When you file your DMV report, make sure to keep a copy for your personal records, as one will not be provided later. In many cases, the police will come out to the scene of the accident and prepare a police report. Make sure to tell your side of the story clearly and articulately. Although you will be upset because you’ve just been hit, do your best to stay calm and be courteous to the officers and others at the scene. If your injuries are too serious, you should wait to give a statement until you’ve received treatment.
At the Scene of the AccidentAs soon as possible after the accident, write down a description of how the accident happened. This can be useful for the DMV and police reports. Take many good pictures of the scene of the accident. Here are some things that you will definitely want to take pictures of:
- Area of accident (make sure to get photos of traffic lights, signs, road hazards, dangerous conditions, etc.)
- Skid marks left by accident (measure these as well)
- Cars (before they are moved). Make sure that pictures of any damage are well-lit and that multiple photos are taken from different angles.
- Get checked out by your physician after a serious car accident. This will help you document your injuries. Even if you just feel shaken up after the accident, understand that many serious injuries often don’t have initial symptoms.
- It’s a good idea to periodically take pictures of your injuries to show the initial injuries and their long term effects.
- Keep records of all visits to medical professionals relating to the accident. Also keep in your records all bills related to your medical care- travel, special equipment (wheelchairs, walkers, crutches), co-payments, etc. Your Portland car accident lawyer can also help you collect these records later.
- You may want to keep a journal of your medical care. Keep every single bill or receipt you receive. Make sure to periodically make an entry discussing the extent of your injuries, the healing process/therapy, your pain level, and how the injuries are affecting your quality of life.