You are legally allowed to file a burn injury lawsuit if you were burned in a fire that you feel was caused by someone else’s negligence, carelessness or malice. If you were renting an old home that was illegally wired and it caught on fire, you could file a claim against the homeowner. If there were defects with your car that caused it to catch on fire, you can file a lawsuit against the car manufacturer. Or, if someone lit your home on fire on purpose, whether or not they knew you were inside, a claim can be brought against them. However, before you can bring a claim against another party, you need to obtain documentation that shows why the other party was at fault and that you truly suffered burns as a result of the fire. Here are some of the key pieces of documentation you may need to support your burn injury lawsuit.
Police, Fire and Arson Reports
One of the key pieces of evidence or documentation that you will need for a burn injury lawsuit is police, fire or arson reports. There may be different types of reports based on the exact cause of the fire and what type of emergency personnel responded to the scene. Obtain any and all reports, particularly those that show why the fire occurred. In many cases, this is your key to showing why the fire occurred and why it is someone else’s fault. Lawyers will also take the time to subpoena any 911 calls that were placed in regards to the fire, as these phone calls may also reveal what led to the fire started and show when the fire started.
Statements From Witnesses
Another important piece of documentation that is needed for a burn injury lawsuit is statements from witnesses. One of the common misconceptions is that you need statements from witnesses who actually saw you burn. This is not the case. A witness may have seen someone throw a match or lit cigarette toward your home or may be a home contractor who warned a homeowner that the electrical wiring was dangerous in the home. In addition to this, you want to talk to witness who were able to help you immediately after you escaped from the fire, as these people will be able to describe your immeasurable pain immediately after you were rescued.
Videos or Photographs From the Fire
One of the lesser known pieces of documentation that you may need for a burn injury lawsuit are any videos or photographs from the fire. When possible, you want to find pictures or videos of the fire when it was at its largest point, and then photos that show the damage that was done after the fire was put out. Jurors need to be able to see just how substantial the fire was and the scope of the fire to be able to visualize how you sustained the injuries that you did. Your lawyer will likely subpoena video from nearby cameras on homes, traffic lights or businesses to help to be able to show how long the fire burned and how large the fire grew.
Medical reports are obviously one of the most important elements to a burn injury lawsuit. In order to win a burn injury lawsuit, you must be able to show that you were burned. Medical reports help to show where you were burned, what portion of your body was burned, what your previous treatment was and what your future treatment will be. Medical reports are important not only for proving that you were burned, but also for estimating your previous and future medical expenses related to the burns, which ultimately affects your award amount.
Photographic Documentation of the Burn Victim
The final piece of documentation that you will need for a burn injury lawsuit is photographic documentation of the burn victim. One of the best things that you can do is to photograph your burns at various stages throughout your recovery process. Many burn victims are awarded pain and suffering due to the painful nature of their injuries. Showing a jury photos of exactly what your burns looked like at the time allows them to see you when you were not healed and allows them to see just how painful your burns must have been for you.
When you need an Atlanta burn injury lawyer who can help you with your burn injury lawsuit, reach out to us here at The Stoddard Firm. We are catastrophic injury and wrongful death attorneys. We have the skills and experience to help you obtain the evidence and provide the documentation you need to win a burn injury lawsuit. We also offer a free consultation, which allows you to sit down with us and discuss your case. Contact us today to discuss your case and let us tell you exactly how we can help you with your case.