Some 180,000 deaths result from burns every year, with many of those cases taking place at work or at home. Of the surviving burn victims, nearly 60% of Americans receive treatment at one of the 128 burn centers. Many of the burn injury cases are accidents that should not have happened, so it falls to the legal system to determine the outcome of a burn injury lawsuit.
Before you can even start your lawsuit, you must gather all the documentation and paperwork, so you can show the source of your injury as well as how the injury involved negligence. Here’s a quick overview that goes over what a burn injury case is, what documentation you need, and how you can proceed with your burn injury lawsuit.
What is a burn injury case?
A burn injury takes place when the skin or underlying tissue is damaged by heat or other substances. Burn injuries can involve electricity, chemicals, radiation, or even friction. A burn injury can also happen with open flames, contact burns where the skin touches a hot object or a hot liquid like water. While millions of burn injuries take place every year, nearly 11 million people had injuries that were severe enough to involve medical intervention and/or hospitalization.
What documentation do you need?
You already know the extent of your burn injury, but in the court of law, that isn’t enough. Collect as much evidence as possible to prove the case. Gather claim documents and evidence to substantiate your case and prove without a doubt that the person or entity is culpable for your burn injury.
A quick checklist of essential documentation includes the following.
- Official reports, including any police reports, accident reports, 911 call recordings, or other reports from official or unofficial law enforcement channels.
- Photos and video, including shots of the accident scene, pictures of the burn injuries, depictions of the damage that was done, shots of the roadway, and even shots of other individuals who were present, whether they were injured or not.
- Medical reports, including the exam by the doctor and nurses after the accident. Include second opinions, any reports from specialists, and other medical evidence that could reflect in any way on your burn injury investigation.
- Background research and evidence, particularly if it shows a pattern of past safety issues, violations, or complaints. Collect vehicle records and service records, if the burn injury involves vehicles.
- Physical evidence, including any remnants of burned clothing, damaged items, or other evidence that shows what happened in this case.
- Insurance, including your card, communication from the insurance companies, and any details you can collect on the other person’s insurance company.
- W2 forms, which show lost wages, as well as the fact that you were gainfully employed prior to the burn injury accident.
- Bills and invoices, including all estimates for repair if the burn injury involves your damaged personal property or effects, medical bills, receipts for payments made during the course of your burn injury treatment and recovery, and other repair invoices if applicable.
While this list is not exhaustive, it does give you a sense of some of the documents that will be useful and essential in your burn injury case. Remember that your case will vary slightly based on your injury, your medical situation, and other factors. So, collect other evidence that you think might be useful.
Even if you don’t think the evidence, receipt, or detail will be important, collect it and keep it with the other details in your case. Just because it seems an inexpensive item or the injury claim does not appear enough to worry about does not mean that you should let it go. Keep careful records, and then reach out to a lawyer for help in determining whether to proceed with your burn injury lawsuit.
The Next Step: Reach Out to an Advocate to Help with Your Burn Injury Case
When you reach out for help, an Atlanta burn injury lawyer will discuss the entire incident, as well as ask further details on the subject of negligence and your burn injury case. He or she will carefully review all the documentation and will ask for clarification on what happened, when, and how.
Your goal through this process is to find out if you have a burn injury lawsuit that is worth pursuing, but the consultation may offer additional options to consider for your own health and for the lawsuit. Reach out to an Atlanta burn injury lawyer today to learn more about a free consultation, then act to get the justice you deserve from your burn injury lawsuit.