Personal Injury Blog

personal_injury_lawyer_2You’ve probably heard the annoying TV and radio ads yelling at you to call them immediately after a car accident, or to contact so-and-so to get help. While these ads are bothersome, there is truth to the fact that you should get immediate medical treatment following a car accident. 

Why should you immediately seek medical care, you may ask? It’s in your best interest to do so, not only for the maintenance of your physical well-being, but also concerning your car accident insurance claim.

Odds are, even if you feel “fine,” you may have hurt yourself, and it’s important to check and be sure you don't have any car accident injuries. There is personal injury protection (PIP) on your auto insurance policy that covers up to 80% of your car accident-related injuries when you seek medical care.

Still aren’t convinced you should seek medical care? Read some of our pointers below, and see how they can affect your settlement amount, too.

The Immediate Aftereffects of an Accident

How Shock and Adrenaline Mask Pain & Injuries

One of the main reasons why immediate medical treatment is crucial after an accident is because shock and adrenaline can mask pain and injuries. When a person is involved in a traumatic event such as a car accident, their body releases hormones like adrenaline to help them cope with the situation.

This surge of adrenaline can temporarily numb sensations of pain, making it difficult for individuals to assess the severity of their injuries. In some cases, individuals may feel perfectly fine immediately after a car accident, only to experience pain and discomfort hours or even days later.

Identifying Hidden Injuries

Some injuries sustained in car accidents can be difficult to identify without the help of a medical professional. For example, whiplash and internal bleeding are two common injuries that may not show noticeable symptoms right away.

However, if left untreated, these injuries can worsen and lead to serious health complications. Getting immediate medical treatment can help identify hidden injuries and prevent them from getting worse.

Internal Injuries Are Often Missed

Another reason why immediate medical treatment is crucial after a car accident is that internal injuries are often missed in initial evaluations. Even if you have visible injuries, your doctor may not be able to identify any internal damage without conducting further tests and exams. Without proper diagnosis and treatment, these internal injuries can become life-threatening.

car accident neck injury

The Importance of Immediate Medical Attention

Preventing Further Injuries

Seeking immediate medical treatment after an accident can also prevent further injuries from occurring. For example, if you have sustained a broken bone or soft tissue injury, delaying treatment can lead to complications such as infection or permanent damage. By seeking medical attention right away, you can ensure that your injuries are properly treated and reduce the risk of additional harm post-car accident.

Benefits of Prompt Diagnosis

Prompt medical treatment can also lead to a more accurate diagnosis of your injuries. This is important for both your physical recovery and your claim. A timely diagnosis can help you receive the necessary treatment and prevent any potential long-term effects from the car accident. It can also provide solid evidence for your insurance claim, helping you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

Florida's Statute of Limitations

In Florida law, there is a statute of limitations for personal injury claims, including those related to car accidents. This means that there is a limited amount of time in which you can file a claim and seek compensation for your injuries with the insurance company. The sooner you seek medical treatment, the sooner you can start building your car accident injury case and potentially receive fair compensation. In Florida, you have up to four years to file a lawsuit - but need to see a medical professional within 14 days.

woman recovering at home from car accident leg injury

The Role of Medical Documentation in Legal Cases

Medical Records as Evidence

Medical documentation is crucial in legal cases involving car accidents. These records serve as evidence of your injuries and the treatment you received, helping to support your claim for compensation. Without proper medical documentation, it can be challenging to prove the extent of your injuries and their impact on your life.

Additionally, insurance companies may use a lack of medical records as a reason to deny or reduce your compensation, arguing that your injuries were not severe enough to warrant medical treatment. By seeking immediate medical attention and keeping detailed records of your injuries and treatment, you can strengthen your case and increase the likelihood of receiving fair compensation.

You Need To Get Medical Care For Your Insurance Claim

If you don’t seek medical treatment within 14 days of an accident, you forfeit your ability (most of the time) to getting PIP benefits. These are new laws that went into effect in recent years to minimize fraud in the system. So instead of being eligible for $10,000 in PIP, you may only get $2,500 or none at all. Going right after to a hospital or doctor to be examined for your injuries is essential because it translates to being injured.

Basically, it makes the correlation between the accident and your injuries more compelling and immediate. Even if you don’t feel like you’re in pain, seek medical attention immediately. Adrenaline that happens after an accident can mask pain and injuries that can crop up later.

The Impact on Settlements

It can affect your claim in regards to your settlement amount. While it’s never guaranteed that you’ll receive a settlement, the linkage between your injuries and the accident starts with your medical treatment. Insurance agents evaluate these records heavily when reviewing a claim and rewarding a settlement to you.

The longer you wait to get treated, the harder it is to prove that your injuries were caused by the accident. Let’s face it: insurance companies aren’t the good guys, and at the end of the day, they only see bottom line. This is especially emphasized when you seek compensation through another driver’s insurance policy.

The insurance representative’s attitude if they see a gap in receiving treatment will be something akin to this: “Well he/she must not have been in that much pain to warrant a settlement because they took so long to seek medical treatment.” It’s an unfortunate stance, but don’t make yourself defenseless; talk to a personal injury attorney today who can help you in your accident case.

leg injuries from car accident

Get Help from a Florida Car Accident Attorney

It’s never an ideal situation when you are in an accident. However, you can make the best of your situation by being proactive about your medical treatment and about your case. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area that can provide proper legal advice in regards to your case. This will help you see why receiving medical treatment within 14 days of an accident is so important. After an accident, everything else is simply ancillary.

Call Us For A Free Consultation

Leave A Comment