Subrogation cases are often won, and lost, within the first few days of the incident. Consider employing the following steps to maximize your recovery potential:
1. Get an attorney and experts involved immediately. If possible, have your attorney involved from the start. This gives the attorney an opportunity to inspect the scene, secure evidence and interview witnesses. Your attorney should also know what experts are needed based on the facts of the loss. Further, your attorney should know how these experts perform at deposition and in trial.
2. Keep the accident scene intact – as long as possible. Do not order the bulldozer in right away, or start debris cleanup, until your expert and attorney have had a chance to assess the scene and determine what possible target defendants may exist.
3. Balance cleanup efforts with the investigation. It is important to make sure that the damaged property gets back on its feet right away. However, when feasible, try and provide a reasonable time period for experts and potentially responsible parties to inspect the accident scene.
4. Put the target defendants on notice right away. When possible, give target defendants an opportunity to inspect the scene in its original condition. This may assist in avoiding spoliation arguments down the road.
5. Preserve the evidence. Do not throw anything away. Allow your experts and/or your attorney to inspect the scene and determine what to preserve. If in doubt as to whether to store a piece of evidence or dispose of it, err on the side of caution and store it.
By following these simple steps you will be ahead of the curve and well on your way to maximizing recovery for your subrogation claim.