Documenting what you are going through is incredibly important throughout your case.
The 3 main things you will want to document are:
- All related expenses
- Your pain, including intensity, frequency, and how it is influencing your life (include photos)
- Anything different you have to do now as a result of the accident
Expenses may include a number of things.Your medical bills fall into this category, but don’t forget to include anything you have had to purchase due to the accident. Do you need a special pillow for neck/back support? Unable to cook for yourself and need to spend more on food? This is all valuable information for you to track. Is it something you had to buy once? Or once per month, once per week?
That being said, DO NOT use this as an excuse to buy more than you need. If you are spending frivolously, you are jeopardizing the validity of your necessary purchases. It can be a fine line, and it may be helpful to have a professional help you review the purchases that would apply under a claim.
Take note, this is more than just writing down how much you spend. Save all of your receipts, make digital copies of them and sort them as best you can. Record what each receipt was for(sometimes receipts aren’t great at that). If you’re in doubt about a bigger purchase, or something you’ll need to purchase regularly, feel free to ask your attorney about it.
It is never easy to quantify pain. Do you use a scale? General feeling? How often should you record it? Are there scars or other trauma associated with the injury that can be photographed?
Again, the more you can document the better off you will be. We recommend using a combination of a pain scale with a description. Scale of 1-10, with 10 being the absolute worst pain you could ever experience. And then explain the pain. Sharp, blunt, squeezing, ripping.Is it consistent, intermittent, throbbing? Does it change throughout the day?It can be helpful to record 2-3 times per day so the feeling and experience is fresh in your mind. Yes, this can take time. But if you don’t take this seriously, it will be hard to expect someone else to do so.
And remember to TAKE PHOTOS of your injuries on a regular basis to show how severe the injury was at the time, and how it is healing.
You would be surprised how much information you forget. And you never know what of that information will be valuable. That is why it is so important to document as much as you can. If you can do so digitally, that is fantastic so you (or a third party) can easily search and index everything. If possible, take pictures of your injury to show changes (better or worse). Again, record your pain and how you are feeling when you take an image so there can be as much information available as possible about that moment.
You were already busy before the accident, and now you are try to do even more by documenting everything. Try not to overwhelm yourself, otherwise you’ll quit documenting altogether. You know this is important, so find a comfortable frequency and method that you can keep up with throughout your recovery and your case.
And most importantly, take care of yourself! That’s the goal. We want you to be as close to normal or better than you were before. Everything we recommend is based on helping you get back to your life and moving forward.