Suppose you have been seriously injured in a car accident. In that case, you may have the option of being able to read a victim impact statement at the end of the trial against the individual who caused your injuries. When you have sustained severe injuries in a car accident caused by negligence, you may be outraged or still suffer from emotional trauma. To be effective in your statement to the court, you should keep some essential elements in mind.
The primary purpose of the statement is to convey to the court how the accident and the resulting consequences affected or changed the victim’s life.
What Should be Included in A Victim Impact Statement?
When the court allows you to read your victim impact statement, it will enable you to provide a glimpse into your life and the negative consequences you have had to deal with as a result of being injured in the accident. To make a significant impression on those who are responsible for making a judicial decision, you need to include essential details such as the following:
• Your feelings and emotions regarding the accident, including anxieties you may have experienced and still deal with today.
• The physical challenges you may have to deal with in terms of the recovery process, time off of work, or loss of the ability to participate in activities you previously enjoyed.
• The full extent of the financial costs that you have experienced. It is permissible to discuss the monetary amounts you have to pay in medical expenses and, if applicable, how this continues to affect you.
What Should I Not Discuss in a Victim Impact Statement?
Some courts limit the time you are permitted to give a victim impact statement. Therefore, you will want to maximize your time and the statement you will give. Some important topics not discussed include the following:
• Do not use any type of profanity when making your statement. Doing so could cause the jury to see you in a negative light.
• Do not assign blame to the defendant. Instead, the time that you have been given should be to emphasize how the accident affected you and continues to influence your present life.
Why Should I Make a Victim Impact Statement?
A victim is given the option of presenting an impact statement to express how the accident has altered or changed their lives. An added benefit to providing an impact statement is that it can be very therapeutic in that you can publicly express your feelings and emotions to the court. This can also help the jury when making a decision in terms of how much compensation to award.
Can an Attorney Help Me With My Victim Impact Statement?
If you have been injured in a car accident, our law firm can help you recover the compensation you deserve and help you with your victim impact statement. Contact our law offices by calling (310) 431-9875 to schedule a free consultation.