One always hopes a family member or close friend will never be involved in a serious accident. However, if this occurs, it is imperative that the grief and shock associated with the accident do not prevent friends and family from taking immediate action to protect the accident scene. I recently received a call from family members who had a relative killed in a car accident. The family understandably was stricken with grief and did not know what to do. This is where an experienced personal injury attorney will take over and allow the family to return to the grieving process.
The personal injury lawyer will immediately take steps to maintain evidence and launch a professional investigation into the facts surrounding the accident. This includes hiring a licensed /certified investigator who will recognize important evidence, take measurements and photographs, and perform any action necessary to gather all pertinent facts.
These steps include:
1. Making sure the accident scene is preserved, and requesting a court order if necessary
2. Hiring a professional investigator to visit and document the accident scene
3. Taking statements from the witnesses
4. Taking photographs and measurements of the accident scene
5. Obtaining the accident report (this is usually available 10-15 days after the accident)
6. Requesting an autopsy if there are questions as to the manner of death
Many times a grieving family will not be thinking about investigating the accident scene or requesting an autopsy, and important evidence will be lost. If this occurs, you may be assured that insurance companies will contest payment. For wrongful death and personal injury claims, you should not hesitate to contact an experienced trial attorney who knows what to do and will act quickly to protect your interests.
The Alonzo Law Firm sincerely hopes that you will never need to contact us, but if a tragic event occurs, do not let the shock and grief associated with that event prevent you from doing what is necessary to protect your family. The insurance company for the negligent party will be investigating the accident as soon as possible, and so should you.