Working with Your Personal Injury Attorney
Your relationship with your attorney is critical to the outcome of your case.
It is very important for you to work as closely as possible with your attorney. You should develop a comfortable relationship with your attorney and he or she should be available by telephone. Brad & Tyson Wiles take special pride in providing personal one-on-one service to each and every client.
IMPORTANT! It is extremely important that all of your health care providers know of each and every complaint and injury that you are experiencing. If you suffer from a condition that is not known to the doctors, it will not be in their medical records. If it is not in their medical records the insurance companies believe that the condition did not exist.
The following is a sample of the “Client Memorandum” which Wiles & Wiles gives to all injured clients to assist them with the proper handling and facilitation of their claim. The following 21 points are merely a suggestion and a reminder to the client of how best to maintain a proper relationship with his or her attorney.
- Insurance companies do not pay money willingly. The insurance company can be expected to thoroughly investigate the facts of the accident, the claim for medical treatment, and any past injuries or claims. The insurance company will obtain copies of all past medical records.
- You should not discuss your case with anyone, including friends. The insurance company may obtain statements that could be used against your claim.
- It will help your case to tell us about any prior injury or prior pain to any parts of your body. Many good cases are lost by the injured person’s concealing or forgetting a previous injury.
- Insurance companies keep a record of any and all claims against any insurance company. The insurance company is sure to find out if you have ever made a previous claim.
- You should be sure to furnish us with the names and addresses of all doctors who have treated you.
- Tell your local doctor all of your complaints. The doctor’s records can only be as complete as what you have told the doctor.
- Keep track of all prescriptions and medicines taken, saving all receipts.
- Obtain and keep duplicate copies of all medical, hospital and prescription bills. You should send these bills to us for our file. Also keep records of any other expenses you may have in connection with your accident, i.e., hiring extra help, having to take a taxi to your doctor’s appointment, etc.
- Keep a diary of all of your complaints and progress. This can be very helpful when, a year later, you will be called upon to relate your pain and difficulties.
- Keep an accurate records of all days lost from work due to your injuries.
- Do not have your automobile repaired until you are sure that you have obtained pictures of it. After pictures have been taken, by you or our office, have your collision insurance carrier repair your car.
- Furnish our office the correct names, addresses and telephone numbers of any and all witnesses you may learn of.
- Save any photographs (digital or hard copies) pertaining to your case.
- If you are required to be hospitalized for any type for follow-up treatment or physical therapy, please notify our office.
- Have your own auto insurance carrier pay as many hospital and doctor bills under the medical payment provisions of your policy as possible.You should also have your health insurance, such as Blue Cross or Blue Shield, pay as much of your costs as possible. You should not expect doctors and hospitals to wait until your case is tried or settled to receive payment. You should, therefore, pay any balance as soon as possible.
- Keep us informed of anything that might affect your case. Certainly nothing should be signed without first consulting us. Applications for insurance benefits, reports to the State, any change in doctors, returning to work, any change in treatment, etc., should be reported to our office promptly. Disability or unemployment applications should first be checked by us.
- Keep us advised to any vacation times when you may not be available. An emergency telephone number and/or alternative way of reaching you should be in your file at our office.
- Some of the necessary costs of your injury claim may include: the police report, investigation service, filing fee with the court, copying medical records and reports that your doctors submit, doctor’s narrative evaluation of your injury, depositions, jury fees, transcripts, and witness fees.
- If you have other insurance and need help, our office will submit your claims, particularly medical payment claims.
- Be sure to keep our office advised of any change in your address or telephone number. If you need to see us, please call for an appointment as opposed to dropping in, as we may be unavailable.
- It sometimes takes many months or years to settle a claim. In fact, it is dangerous to settle certain types of claims too soon, because it often takes a long time for serious injuries to become evident.
- It is important for you, as the client, to keep us informed of any and all significant developments. To see that a permanent record gets into your file it would be prudent to call our office periodically with updates on your recovery progress.