In personal injury cases, clients often worry that things from their past will come back to haunt them. They sometimes feel embarrassed, angry, or resentful sharing certain types of information with their lawyer.
Prior health history can be an especially touchy subject. If a client suffered from a medical condition before their accident and the accident aggravated their symptoms or caused new ones, they may be afraid this information could downplay the seriousness of their new injuries caused by the accident.
It can also be tempting to leave out details or lie to cover up things like a criminal record or old lawsuits, but doing so could hurt your chances of being compensated for your injuries in the end.
An experienced lawyer will help reduce the impact of negative information from your past by developing a strategy to use when you’re confronted about it.
Information that clients should never hide from their personal injury attorney includes:
- Past criminal history
- Past insurance claims
- Past lawsuits
- Past workers’ compensation claims
- Work history (or lack thereof)
- Reasons for disability
- Prior health history
It’s important to remember your lawyer isn’t allowed to disclose information you provide during the attorney/client relationship. Your lawyer has a duty of confidentiality to protect your information and use it in your best interests. One of the only times your lawyer’s duty of confidentiality does not apply is if you seek legal advice about committing a crime in the future.
Great lawyers find a way to combine their duty of confidentiality with their client’s honesty to suppress, exclude, or explain information that could put their client in a bad light. When you hire a lawyer, you have to take the leap of faith and trust the lawyer will handle your confidential and sensitive information properly to build the best case possible.
Are you worried that information from your past will hurt your personal injury case? An experienced attorney can explain your legal options and help put your mind at ease.
About Elk & Elk Attorney William J. Price
William J. Price focuses his practice on personal injury litigation for people who have been seriously injured or killed as a result of medical malpractice, nursing home neglect, defective products, negligence in construction sites, and trucking and auto accidents. He has been recognized by Super Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell, AVVO, and is a member of the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum and Million Dollar Advocates Forum.