Do I Need to See a Doctor After an Accident?
Reasons to Get Immediate Treatment After an Accident
Some accidents result in injuries that are clearly and visibly evident, like a finger amputation or a compound fracture, a type of injury where part of the bone protrudes through the skin. Other types of injuries might be superficially invisible, like a traumatic brain injury or a spinal disc herniation. It's human nature that people might be less likely to seek medical care when there isn't any objective evidence of an injury.
Why Do Accident Victims Delay Medical Care?
People choose to delay medical care after an accident for a variety of reasons. In some cases, an accident survivor might be influenced by their rising adrenaline levels, which can dull their immediate pain sensations. It's also not unusual for an accident victim with no visible signs of trauma to start feeling the effects of their injuries after a day or two. Then, they think that the pain will go away in a few more days. Some people don't seek medical attention because they're simply afraid that it will cost too much. Then, there are those who want to wait and see if the insurer of the person who caused the accident will accept liability. In other scenarios, it isn’t uncommon for an accident survivor and their doctors to focus on obvious injuries – like fractures or deep cuts into muscles, tendons, and nerves – and overlook other injuries.
In any case, if you've been injured in an accident, you'll serve yourself well by getting to an urgent care facility or an emergency room right away. The reasons why an accident victim should get immediate care and treatment right away are both medical and legal.
The Medical Reasons for Getting Evaluated Immediately After an Accident
A person’s overall recovery process can be slowed down if there is a delay in diagnosis and treatment, especially with injuries to the back and neck. A conservative treatment plan of x-rays and physical therapy to heal damaged tissue isn't going to remedy an injury like a spinal disc herniation with nerve root impingement. When that treatment plan is unsuccessful, it only leads to more of an inference that something might be seriously wrong with the victim's vertebrae and spinal nerves. Continued complaints of pain and discomfort after conservative treatment are likely to result in a referral for magnetic resonance imaging. These images can reveal a disc herniation and any nerve root impingement.
So long as it has been properly attributed to the accident in question, that fresh injury is going to get the attention of the opposing insurance company. It knows that it's going to be in for some significant financial exposure if the accident victim retains a quality car accident lawyer.
The Legal Reasons for Getting Evaluated Right After an Accident
Auto insurance companies like Allstate and State Farm are huge businesses. They're even listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and their shares are traded publicly. They accept the premium payments of their insured customers, and they invest those payments to make even more money. When a valid claim arises, you'll quickly learn that you're not in “very good hands” or with a “very good neighbor.” They'll do whatever they can to devalue your claim. One way that they try to do that is by raising questions about delays in treatment. They view such delays with a high degree of skepticism. Whether that insurer connects your injury with your accident or not, it's still going to argue that either you weren't injured to the extent that you claim, or you injured yourself in some other way. In short, you're a malingerer or a liar. That's an old defense that's used after all other defenses fail. If you can't defeat the claimant, attack his or her credibility. An experienced personal injury lawyer knows how to deflate that defense.
Never Give a Statement
Insurance companies act quickly to devalue a plaintiff’s claim, so don't be surprised if you get a phone call from an adjuster representing the opposing insurance company. The small talk will turn into questions about how you’re feeling, when you received treatment, and where you went for medical assistance. Then, the adjuster will ask for a recorded statement. You probably don't even know the nature and extent of your injuries, so just tell the adjuster that you're hurt, and right now, your medical condition is a matter for you and your doctors. Then, he or she might ask for a recorded statement. No law requires you to give that statement, so politely refuse to give it, no matter what the adjuster says. If he or she says that your claim will be closed out without a statement, let them close it. A skilled car accident lawyer knows how to have that adjuster open their file back up in a matter of minutes.
Don’t Delay in Filing a Personal Injury Action
Every state has a statute of limitations that operates as a deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit after an accident. These deadlines are strict, and there are very few exceptions to them. If your claim is against the state, a county, city, or a governmental body, other rules might apply that drastically reduce the time that you can bring an action in court. It operates in your best interests to consult with an experienced and effective personal injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Today
After an accident, get evaluated and treated immediately and don't give the opposing insurer a statement of any kind. That adjuster only plans on using your own words against you in the future. Arrange for a free consultation and case evaluation with The Law Offices of Glen F. Larson to ensure you are protected. Our personal injury lawyer can investigate your case, calculate the maximum value of your claim, and do everything in his power to obtain a settlement or verdict that covers your injury-related losses.
Contact The Law Offices of Glen F. Larson at (512) 553-4994 to arrange a free consultation today.