When advancing a personal injury claim in British Columbia, the evidence (i.e. what they know about your pain and suffering) of your loved ones and friends is quite important. What do your colleagues know about your injuries? Did your family members help you recover from surgery or transport you to and from therapy sessions?
It is one thing to walk into court and ask the judge to hand you money for your losses and injuries. It is yet another to present testimony in your favor from people who will not gain financially from the outcome of the case. If your friends and loved ones can speak on your behalf in a heart-felt and truthful manner based on what they observe and what you tell them, they can be central to the development of your personal injury claim.
How do you get your loved ones on your side in an appropriate manner?
Start by ensuring all of your family and friends are aware of your injuries and the details of the accident. Let them into your home and daily life as you recover, so they see firsthand what you are going through during the recovery phase. This ensures they have firsthand knowledge of the severity of your injuries.
There is a fine line between whining to the point of annoying them and allowing your loved ones to see/observe/understand your pain. Let those that are close to you know what you are going through, but do not make every conversation with them central to your injuries and the accident.
If you have to miss work for an extended period of time, tell your colleagues why you are missing that time. If you have to step away from your bowling league or another sports team, let your teammates know why you are no longer participating. Subtly allow those around you to understand your pain and what the injury is doing to your life.
As long as you are upfront and honest about your injuries and the impact on your life, your loved ones will feel honored that you share your struggles with them. Most will offer to help in their own ways, and some may be willing to help you when it comes to compiling an effective claim to get what you deserve.
If your injuries are not visible on the outside (often the case with neck and back injuries), it will be even more important for you to communicate your struggles and pain with those around you. They cannot see what you are feeling inside, so you will have to tell them. For instance, if you suffer from back pain you will have to notify those around you when physical activity is beyond your capabilities during recovery. They will not know without you telling them upfront.
Keep track of those who understand your suffering
Make sure to document everyone who has knowledge of your injury, even if you just tell them about your pain or other medical issues one or two times. Your attorney will call upon these people when it comes time to validating your claim. Your loved ones will be easy to track since you see and speak to them regularly, but jot down what you have told each one so your lawyer knows what they may be able to testify to for your claim.
There are emotional and mental struggles that come with accidents, and your loved ones will be your most important support group in that area. Do not suffer alone when others are ready and willing to gather around you and make the journey back to health easier and faster.