What documents do you need to provide for a personal injury claim?

Monday, 05 December 2016 | Kirsty Clifton

The burden of proof in personal injury claims lies with the Claimant. This means that in order to successfully pursue a claim for personal injury compensation, you will need to prove any injuries or financial losses alleged. How do you successfully do this?

The documentation that we will require will depend upon the specific circumstances of your claim. However, there are certain documents which will generally be necessary.

ID documents

We will ask you to provide identification for the purposes of the Money Laundering Regulations 2007. This will include one form of photograph ID (i.e. a driving licence or passport) and one proof of address document (i.e. bank statement, utilities bill etc…).

Documents to prove liability

The first major hurdle in a personal injury claim is to prove that the accident occurred as alleged and to prove that the accident was caused by the third party’s negligence.

We will require any available documentation to allow us to consider the strength of your claim, including:-

  • A full and detailed description of the circumstances leading up to the accident, the precise step-by-step mechanics of the accident and any other information you recall about the day in question, such as the weather conditions (if the accident occurred outside), speed of traffic, flow of traffic (car or pedestrian), visibility, conversations with the other party or witnesses immediately after the accident etc…
  • Photographs of the accident location (time and date stamped, if possible)
  • In the event of a road traffic accident, we will want photographs showing the accident scene, road layout, damage to the vehicles, position of the vehicles etc… The photographs should be marked or annotated to show the direction of travel of each vehicle immediately prior to the collision.
  • In the event of a tripping claim we will expect the photographs to identify the exact defect and show evidence of the size of the defect, this should be measured using a ruler or tape measure. Further photographs should be taken from a distance in order to show the layout of the area where the accident occurred and marked to identify the defect and the direction of travel.
  • In the event of a slipping claim, photographs clearly showing the cause of the slippage are extremely helpful in proving a claim.

In some circumstances, photographs may not be available. This can result in more prolonged investigations and difficulties in proving the cause of an accident. As such, we always request contemporaneous photographs, if possible.

  • Details of any witnesses to the accident, including full name, address and telephone number.
  • Any written documentation from either the police, health & safety executive, another investigating body or the premises where an accident occurred, including police reports or accident reports.
  • In the event of a road traffic accident, we will ask for a sketch plan of the accident site and vehicle locations and directions.
  • In the event of an employers’ liability claim, we may require documents such as personnel and occupational health records, training records, method statements, contract of employment and the staff handbook.
  • In the event of claims against your landlord for defective premises, we will need to see your tenancy agreement to see who has responsibility for repairs.

Documents to prove causation

The second hurdle in a personal injury claim is proving causation of your injuries, i.e. that the injuries were caused by the accident.

To do this, we will need to obtain your full medical records from your GP and from any hospital or treatment centre that you may have visited as a result of your accident-related injuries. It is important that the medico-legal expert sees your full records in order to assess whether any of the injuries pre-existed the accident or whether any further incidents occurred around that same time which could have given rise to similar injuries.

We will ask for photographs of any visible injuries. This can be a useful way of visually demonstrating the original severity of your injuries. Photographs are particularly important if you have been left with any scarring as a result of the injuries sustained in an accident.

We also suggest that you keep a diary of your recovery progress. It can be difficult to remember the chronology of treatment received or recall the date of recovery when looking back some months/years later. As such, it can be very helpful to keep a diary to chart the recovery of symptoms, changes in medication and treatment undertaken. This assists when discussing your injuries with the medical expert and can also provide important dates when it comes time to draft your statement of evidence.

Documents to prove financial losses

In addition to your claim for injuries, you are also able to claim for any financial losses reasonably incurred as a direct result of the accident. These expenses will usually include items such as loss of earnings due to time off work whilst recovering from your injuries, any private treatment recommended by the doctors such as physiotherapy, the cost of painkillers and prescriptions and travel expenses to/from medical appointments. You may also have sustained clothing or property damage as a result of an accident. This list is not exhaustive and you may well have incurred other losses not listed above.

To successfully recover any financial losses, you will need to produce relevant documentary evidence such as payslips, receipts and invoices proving the sums claimed.

In the event of travel expenses undertaken by car, please keep a note of the date of the journey, the purpose and the return mileage.

Documents to prove a claim for care & assistance

You may have required assistance from friends or family members with domestic chores or personal care following the accident and as a direct result of your injuries. You are able to make a claim for such assistance, subject to the medical evidence agreeing that the care claimed was necessary and reasonable in light of the injuries sustained.

If you did require assistance, please ensure that you keep a record of the tasks that you needed help with, who provided that help and the frequency of that assistance (i.e. daily, weekly etc…). You will also need to specify how long your friends/family members spent carrying out each specific task.

Without a doubt, documentary evidence is vital to the success of a claim and in proving the losses sustained. If you plan to pursue a claim for injury, please ensure that you keep all documents that may be relevant to the claim, even if you are unsure how relevant they may be. Failure to retain relevant documentation could potentially lead to you either being undercompensated for your injuries and financial losses or, in the worst case scenario, could result in you failing to prove your claim entirely.

If you have been involved in an accident and require some assistance in making a claim, then please do not hesitate to contact Ascot Lawyers on 01344 512370 or you can contact us by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..