How do courts determine how much you can win in a lawsuit? Some of the damages are easy
to calculate. Presenting bills and pay stubs to the court gives evidence of how much you’re due
to correct those problems. But what about the less-tangible things like pain and suffering?
Part of your lawyer’s job is to sway the court to give you the money you deserve, but if you
create an injury journal you can make it much easier and make it far more likely you’ll get a
bigger payout. Here’s what you need to know.
What is an injury journal?
An injury journal is a record of your mental and physical state over time after your injury. By
recording how you’re feeling and the challenges you’re facing after your injury, you can give
testimony to the court about what you’re feeling to prove that you deserve far more than just
your hospital bills in compensation.
What goes into an injury journal?
You should start your journal as soon as you can after your accident. Each entry should have
the date and time and an honest assessment of how you feel and what has happened to you. It
is important to be candid and honest about the limitations you’re facing You might need to write
about embarrassing or scary things that have happened because of your injury. However, the
specifics of your journal will only be revealed to people who are involved in your case. The more
information you can add, the easier it will be for the court and your lawyer to reach an
agreement on compensation.
Your journal should also contain specifics about the incident and what you’ve done after the
accident. This can include things like:
- Doctor’s appointments
- Medications prescribed and taken
- Conversations with authorities, insurance agents, doctors, and witnesses
- Specifics about the accident from your perspective
Above all, your entries must be honest! If your case goes to trial, your journal may be entered in
as evidence. If it is proven that you lied or misrepresented yourself in your journal it can cast the
whole situation into doubt. So don’t ham it up.
Recording your journal
Writing is the most common way to record entries, but thanks to technology there are other
options. You could use a voice recorder or a computer to make audio entries. You could even
make videos to demonstrate certain difficulties you’re having. If these aren’t an option and you can speak, you could dictate to someone else. Your lawyer might have additional suggestions.
It’s quite common for memories to get fuzzy after an accident. Keeping a record doesn’t just
help your lawyer. It can help mentally you to get your feelings out by recording them. It can help
prove that your pain isn’t “all in your head” or that your limitations aren’t all that bad.
For more advice on how to start and keep an injury journal, speak with our lawyers. We’ll help
you create a template for your entries and give further advice on what to record based on your