You have been injured at work on the railroad. From our previous editions of Straight Track, you knew to do the following:
- Fill out a work injury report that truthfully stated the railroad's negligence (Straight Track - "Is There a Right Way to Complete A Personal Injury Report?")
- Take control of your medical care (Straight Track - "Your Doctor Must Be Your Best Friend - What the Doctor Doesn't Know Could Hurt You")
- Consult right away with Hoey & Farina as your railroad union approved designated legal counsel to receive the necessary advice pertaining to your particular set of circumstances (Straight Track - "More Than Just Words - 'You May Not Need a Lawyer, But You Do Need Legal Advice'").
You covered all the basics, but is there anything else you should be doing?
Yes, keep a diary!keeps track of your day to day life from the time you are injured at work to the time you reach maximum medical recovery.
Keeping a work injury diary is often one of the most helpful things you can do for yourself, your doctor and your attorney, yet is often the most over looked.
When keeping a diary, it is important to include any pain and physical limitations you experience that were caused by your injuries. This will not only aid your doctor in your treatment, but will also document your pain and suffering (that is recoverable in the form of monetary compensation under the law). Time often clouds memories, making people's recollections of events and conversations sometimes different. Be sure also to include notes of any conversations you have with your doctors, nurses, and even your supervisors.
Another thing to keep track of is any expenses you incur as a result of your injury, such as if you had to hire someone to help cut your grass and do your household chores. These types of expenses may be recoverable.
You should also document your disability by listing activities that you can no longer do, such as hobbies, sports, housework or perhaps playing with your children. Your pain and suffering also are an important part of your FELA claim's damages.
As you're reading this newsletter, take a few minutes right now to think back to exactly what you did and the conversations you had with anyone a month ago. It's no fooling matter. You probably can't remember, and a month is not a very long time. Now consider this, months, even years could go by before you'd have to give a deposition or testimony describing all of events and conversations surrounding your work injury and medical treatment. When you keep a diary, you have an