Medical Records and the Burden of Proof

October 7, 2019

You were driving to work and another driver who was distracted ran through a red light and slammed into your car. You have a herniated disc in your neck and suffered multiple broken bones. How is it even fair that now the insurance adjuster who is representing the negligent driver wants to see your medical records before they will settle your claim? The reason is that medical records can make or break your personal injury claim. Your Charleston personal injury attorney has the burden of proof to show that the negligent party caused your injuries.

Burden of Proof

Because you are the injured party, you will be referred to as the plaintiff in your case. The other party is called the defendant. The plaintiff will always have the burden of proof to show the defendant’s wrongful behavior and the harm they caused. Your attorney will prove this by showing the following:

  • The defendant had a duty of care that was owed to you.
  • The defendant breached this duty.
  • The breach of duty resulted in your damages and injuries.
  • You are entitled to monetary compensation for the injuries and damages that you suffered.

In South Carolina, all drivers are legally obligated to obey the traffic laws of the state to avoid causing harm to other drivers around them. Having a witness testify that they saw the negligent driver run the red light and crash into you would prove that your injuries are connected to the accident. Proving the harm that was caused to you requires medical evidence.

Proving Damages with Medical Evidence

Medical evidence will take form in the records that are produced by your doctor and testing. Medical records and evidence may include any of the following:

  • Patient chart notes created by nurses, doctors, or other healthcare professionals who treated you.
  • Records from the emergency department
  • Surgical notes
  • CT scans, x-rays, MRI results, and other diagnostic tests that were performed
  • Lab analysis such as blood tests

Medical records and evidence help show that you had continuous treatment of one or more conditions that started at the date of the accident or the date that you were first seen by a physician. These records can help prove medical expenses such as physician costs, surgical costs, rehab and therapy expenses, and prescription medications. They can also help prove your loss of income due to your injuries. These records will also help prove that you are entitled to recover monetary compensation for mental anguish and pain and suffering that was caused by your accident.

Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Today

The value of medical records in proving your accident and your injuries is more important than you can imagine. That is also one of the reasons that you should never delay seeking medical treatment after your accident, even if you don’t feel like you have suffered severe injuries. Some injuries take days or even weeks to rear their ugly heads and physicians are trained to look for these injuries if you tell them that you were in an accident.

If you have suffered injuries in a motor vehicle accident, you need to seek the advice of an experienced Charleston car accident attorney. The attorneys at the David Aylor Law Offices will review your situation with you, including your medical records, and work to get you the compensation you are entitled to. Let us handle the paperwork so you can focus on your recovery.

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