Physical fights or altercations can happen anytime. Whether someone gets too hot-headed on the road or a customer finds his meal at a restaurant less than satisfactory, you never know when you might find yourself being physically attacked or jumped by other people. If you get into a physical fight that included battery or assault, here are things you need to do to protect your rights.
Get yourself checked for serious injuries
The first thing you need to do is to seek medical attention to ensure that you have no serious injuries. The types of physical injuries you need to watch out for include:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBI), especially if you hit your head anywhere during the fight. This kind of injury needs immediate attention because it might end up causing long-term damage to your brain and its functions. They can have more insidious effects, but they can be traitorous because they don’t show themselves right away. If you were knocked unconscious or have a concussion, you need to tell your primary healthcare provider right away.
- If your back took a beating, watch out for a herniated disc, or the rupturing of the tissue between your spine’s vertebrae. This kind of injury can cause intense pain, loss of control of your legs and arms, and even a loss of feeling.
- Your knees and shoulders can also be vulnerable during a physical fight; this is why athletes who do contact sports often have padding all over their bodies. If any part of your body is in severe pain after a fight, don’t ignore it and seek medical attention as soon as you can.
- Rib injuries can happen when you experience any form of blunt force to your torso. This type of injury needs to be attended to right away because your ribs enclose many of your body’s vital organs, like your lungs and heart. Any trauma to your chest can cause potentially life-threatening injuries such as a ruptured aorta or a punctured lung.
It may be tempting to immediately go home, take a shower, and just rest it off, but you never know if the altercation caused serious damage. Make sure to have yourself checked to mitigate lasting consequences for your body and health.
Once you get to the hospital or your doctor, ask for their assistance in gathering evidence. Ask them to help you take pictures of your visible wounds, and make sure you have a copy of the tests and medical results. All the evidence you gather at the hospital will be crucial to finding justice.
If you were with anyone, or if it took place in a public setting, consider going back to check if anyone was able to take photographic or video evidence through their phones. Talk to witnesses; gather their contact information. You may need the help of the authorities to gain access to security cameras. Even if the attacker has already left the scene of the crime, make sure to speak with the authorities immediately so that you can provide an accurate description of what happened. The police report will help you establish the truth of what happened and can help uphold your rights in both civil and criminal cases.
Consult a lawyer
Don’t wait until your injuries are worse before you consult personal injury lawyers. They can help you understand your rights and how you can hold your attackers accountable for their actions since by law, they can be held liable for the physical damages you experienced. Here are the types of compensation available to you according to the law:
- For causing serious bodily injury, your attacker can be charged with the crime of battery.
- You as the victim may also seek damages not just for medical expenses, but also for the emotional toll the attack brought upon you. This includes post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), emotional distress, insomnia, and others.
- You can also seek damages for lost income due to having missed work while you were in recovery.
- If any of your belongings were also harmed during the attack, like your car or devices, you may also seek compensation for those too.
Your attorney will be able to advise you on rights in the situation, can safeguard you from potential liability in case the attacker lies and says you started it, and help guide you through the legal process.
Fighting for your rights when you’re attacked need not be a one-man problem. Entrust your case to reputable attorneys and don’t hesitate to fight for justice.