Being in an accident is stressful. The amount of confusion that the average car crash causes is no secret, and we have all heard lots of advice from different people on what to do. One thing that is not stressed nearly enough however is the importance of seeking medical attention immediately. Delaying seeing a medical professional after being in an auto accident can only hurt you, both physically and financially. Here are two huge reasons why:
- Not all injuries are obvious
Many common injuries from accidents, such as spine head injuries, do not show obvious signs until days or weeks after the incident. Though you may have walked away from the accident with little more than a headache, you could find yourself bedridden before you know it. These types of injuries can grow severe and even life threatening, so it is far better to get ahead of them by getting to a doctor and making sure you are okay. Failure to do so is a gamble, and not a worthy one.
- Delaying could hurt your ability to seek damages
The longer you put off getting your injuries diagnosed, the less likely you become of reaching a favorable settlement with the insurance company. Insurance companies are not on your side. They are in the interest of paying as little in a settlement as they can get away with. If you waited weeks to see a doctor, then they will use that to try and downplay the severity of your injuries. In some cases, they may even use the time to create doubt that your injuries were a result of the accident.
The worst part is that juries are likely to believe them if the case goes to court. There is a common narrative in our country that plaintiffs in personal injury cases are only interested in a big payday, and are always exaggerating their injuries. Waiting feeds the insurance companies’ ability to use this narrative against you in court.
Of course, there are many reasons to avoid going to the doctor as well. Medical checkups are not cheap, especially if you don’t have health insurance. I can also be difficult to find the time to see the doctor. It cannot be stressed enough though that these burdens must be overcome. The risks are simply to high.
If you do find yourself in settlement negotiations with an insurance company after waiting to seek medical attention, contact an experienced attorney, like a car accident attorney Dekalb County GA trusts, in your area. Your attorney will be able to walk you through your rights, and ensure that you receive the best settlement possible.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C. for their insight into car accident cases.