Immediate medical care in the aftermath of your physical injuries in an accident could be vital to saving your life and preventing serious complications. Many accident victims do not realize that getting timely medical treatment is not only important their physical healing, but also critical to support their personal injury claim against the at-fault party.
Actual damages are a key legal element to your claim
According to the personal injury law, a victim must have suffered actual bodily injuries, loss of income, or pain and suffering in order to have a valid claim for compensation.
These damages are grouped together as economic and non-economic losses suffered by the victim as a direct result of the accident and subsequent injuries. Timely medical treatment is an integral part of this claim because it helps prove the extent of your injuries that you actually suffered due to another’s negligence.
Personal injury and medical treatment
Here are some of the most important facts that victims should know when it comes to personal injury cases and medical treatment.
Your claim could be adversely affected if you delay treatment
While it is true that every injury may not require emergency medical care, it is important to seek immediate medical attention after an accident, whether you are visibly injured or not. In many cases, pain and other symptoms may only develop later, so it is never an astute idea to ignore a timely medical evaluation.
If you wait for weeks or longer before getting medical attention, it could also give rise to arguments that your injuries were not serious enough to warrant compensation or they were not caused by the accident in question.
The value of a personal injury claim can be adversely impacted when the injured victim fails to follow a reasonable protocol for treatment, which results in the injuries lasting longer and becoming more difficult or expensive to treat.
Insurance companies are known to exploit accident victims by using these types of arguments. They would not readily pay for the treatment if a victim delays or avoids seeing a doctor after an accident.
Gaps in medical treatment can weaken your claim
An accident victim that fails to follow through with the recommended treatment plan in a diligent manner in order to try and minimize their injuries may not be able to recover the full compensation they deserve. Insurance providers use treatment gaps as a leverage to argue that injuries could not have been that severe if the victim voluntarily ignored the treatment plan or missed medical appointments.
Medical treatment duration is relevant
Severity of the victim’s injuries may be correlated with how long the medical treatment lasted. The duration is also associated with the amount of pain and suffering the victim went through. It is commonly understood that serious injuries would take longer to heal, and as a result, they may be associated with greater damages. A larger compensation amount will help in covering the cost of future medical treatments, including any pain and suffering endured by the victim.
Medical professional’s qualifications are important
Diagnosis and treatment prescribed by professionals with medical degrees (M.D.) is given preference as opposed to alternative practitioners and other non-M.Ds. It is in the best interests of an accident victim to seek medical attention from a doctor with a medical degree as soon as possible after the accident. All documents related to the treatment must be kept securely to establish a personal injury claim.
Doctors’ and hospital bills, treatment plans, diagnostic test results, and any other document related to the treatment can be used as important pieces of evidence for making a claim. These documents are important to clarify various aspects, such as the extent of injury, various treatments received, and whether any future treatments might be necessary.
Contact an accomplished personal injury lawyer today
The attorneys at Shapiro and Appleton have over three decades of experience in handling personal injury claims and have helped countless victims obtain their rightful compensation. Give us a call on 800-752-0042 to receive the best legal counsel for your personal injuries.