Finding the right personal injury attorneys in Oklahoma City is important. They’ll not only help expedite the legal process but also ensure that you get the full and fair compensation for your injuries and other related losses. Unfortunately, preventable accidents continue to happen.
Car accidents are the most common personal injury claim, and even the most cautious people on the road can be victims. There are many factors that lead to such events with the main cause being distracted driving. Speeding, drunk driving, recklessness, and rough weather are other factors that can also contribute to the high numbers reported every year.
Despite the high numbers, car crashes and other road accidents always occur when you least expect them. Whenever they happen, they can cause massive damage to the vehicle and even the occupants. As such, if you’re involved in one, you’re likely to panic, especially after seeing the severity of the outcome. It’s no different in a slip-and-fall or dog bite accident.
This article will discuss what you should do after an accident and everything you need to know when finding the right Oklahoma City personal injury lawyer.
What to do after an auto accident
So, what should you do if you find yourself a victim of an accident in Oklahoma City? Here are the main steps you should take to avoid more damage and help your claim.
- Call 9-1-1
The first thing you should do when you find yourself in such a situation is to stay calm and confirm the state of those around you. Of course, this can be difficult given the circumstances, but stay calm as you take the next steps. If you’re not injured, confirm the condition of those around you and then proceed to call 9-1-1.
- Report the accident to the relevant authorities
After you’ve received medical attention either from the quick medical responders or the nearest hospital, you can then move on to the next step. Calling the police to the scene is part of the reporting, but you’re also required by law to answer questions from the officers. Remember, leaving the scene of the accident before every bit of information is captured by the authorized parties only complicates your case.
As you answer the questions posed to you by the police, it’s important that you be careful with the information you volunteer. Whatever is recorded here will be used throughout the legal process. So, it’d be wise to let the investigation take its course.
- Gather as much information and evidence as you can
Before leaving the scene, get the other driver’s personal information. Record the name, insurance information, contact information, and license number. The easiest way to do this is take photos with your cell phone. You should also be ready to do the same when asked by the other party.
Also, take photos and videos of the scene to serve as evidence. Let these tell the story of the wreck. You can photograph the condition of both vehicles, personal injuries, medical receipts, and any other relevant visual information.
While at it, inquire about the police report. A copy is usually within a few days. Get a copy of it as soon as possible because it’s among the main things that your injury lawyer will require, and the claims adjuster will generally not review the file until one is provided.
What to do after a slip-and-fall accident
Report the accident
Reporting the accident to the relevant authorities should be next on your list of priorities. Make sure the management of the property is aware, and request a copy of the accident report. If the police officers were involved in any stage of the reporting, request for a copy of their report too.
- Collect evidence
Like in any other accident, taking photos and videos of the scene and injuries sustained is very crucial. Take pictures of your injuries at different stages of the healing process to show the extent of the damage. These will be used to back up whatever is stated by the doctor in your medical report.
- Get medical treatment
The first thing you should do after such an accident is to seek medical attention from the nearest facility. In addition to treatment, the doctor should assess your injuries and document a report which will act as evidence when presenting your evidence.
What to do after a dog bite
- Seek medical attention
Once again, your priority here should be your health. Visit the nearest hospital immediately to avoid infections. If possible, you can take pictures of the injury before, during, and after treatment. Don’t forget to collect the doctor’s report as this will come in handy when presenting your injury claims.
- Identify the dog’s owner
As the owner of the dog is responsible for the actions of their pet, you’ll need to let them know what happened. If the owner is unidentifiable, you might need to contact animal control for assistance. The agents at the animal control department will find ways of identifying the owner before your case can continue.
- Obtain insurance information
Most renter’s and homeowner’s insurance policies include dog bites on their covers. Therefore, you shouldn’t worry about financially draining your neighbor in case the medical bills are over the roof. Just obtain their insurance information, and let the legal process take its course.
Find or contact an injury attorney
After you’ve followed all the procedures discussed in any of the accidents listed above, the next step will be to contact a lawyer who can guide you through every step of the way.
You’ll be advised on what to do throughout the process. Nearly all personal injury lawyers offer a free consultation before a contract is required. This way, you’ll know whether your situation is actionable, and whether or not a lawyer is needed.
It also gives you an opportunity to see if you can work (and get along) with the lawyer.
How to find the best personal injury lawyer for your case
There are a lot Oklahoma City attorneys, but not all of them are ideal candidates to handle your case. For you to get fair compensation for your losses, it’s important that you find a competent personal injury law firm. Here are some things to look for:
- Trial experience
If you’ve experienced personal injury, you’ll need legal representation from someone who’s well-versed in personal injury law. You can be sure that the other parties will hire the best attorneys to defend them as you present your injury claims. As such, having someone who has handled similar cases to yours can make a difference in getting a fair settlement offer.
- Information from friends and family
The best way of getting a lawyer who can handle your specific case is through referrals. Your friends or family members probably know of someone who has been through the same situation as you. Ask about the lawyer who handled it.
If the answer you receive from them is positive, consider interviewing the attorney to find out more. On the flip side, if the information you receive from your friends isn’t promising, then that’s enough reason to remove that lawyer from your list of candidates. But do your research before making any final decision based on what you hear from these channels.
- How much do they charge?
Even with all the factors mentioned above met, it still boils down to whether or not it makes financial sense for you to hire a particular law firm. Personal injury lawyers charge different amounts for legal representation. Of course, it might be reasonable to think that the more experienced attorneys are likely to demand higher fees than those who are still finding their feet in the industry. But, this isn’t the case. A higher contingency fee doesn’t mean that lawyer is more qualified.
You can take advantage of the free consultation offered by the lawyer to understand all the expenses. Once you have an idea of what to expect, you can then decide.
Why hire a personal injury lawyer in Oklahoma City?
If you’re involved in slip-and-fall, dog bite, or an auto accident in Oklahoma City, it’d be prudent to find a personal injury lawyer within this region (as opposed to hiring a large out of state law firm that advertises on TV all over).
Hiring lawyers can be quite complicated, especially for someone who hasn’t gone through the process before. Hiring a personal injury attorney can go a long way in ensuring that your all of your injury claim is addressed.