A car accident can be an unsettling experience, even when there aren't injuries involved. Unfortunately, many car accidents do result in injuries. While some injuries are immediately obvious and require quick medical attention, other injuries may not be noticeable until days or weeks after the accident occurs. That's especially true with injuries like concussions, sprains, pulled muscles, or ligament tears. You may not notice these injuries until you get back to work or your day-to-day routine.
Fortunately, you can still recover compensation for injuries even if they aren't immediately noticeable after the crash. However, it's important that you take the appropriate steps to document your symptoms and injuries. Below are a few tips to help you prepare for your compensation claim:
Don't settle immediately. If your accident was caused by another driver, you will almost certainly hear from their insurance company soon after the accident. They will likely offer a settlement claim when you speak with them. Whether or not you have injuries, it's usually wise to reject the initial offer for a couple reasons. One is that the first offer is usually low and is meant only as a starting point for negotiations. Insurers don't usually expect the other party to accept the initial offer.
However, you also want to give yourself time to notice whether any injuries appear. If you accept an offer a day or two after the accident, you'll forego any opportunity to pursue compensation for injuries that appear after the fact. You have time to wait, so don't feel rushed to accept their first settlement offer.
Document your symptoms. The stronger the documentation of your injuries and symptoms, the greater your ability to obtain compensation for your injuries. Your notes can be used to bolster and substantiate your claim. Write down every instance of your symptoms affecting your life. For instance, perhaps your pain causes you to be less productive at work or limits your ability to play with your kids. Maybe your head pain and dizziness force you to stay seated or lying down. Write down all of these things, even if they seem trivial. This documentation could play a crucial role in compensation negotiations.
See a doctor. It's hard to pursue an injury claim if you don't seek medical attention for your symptoms. The insurance company will make the argument that the injuries couldn't be too serious if you didn't see a doctor. It's always wise to see a doctor after an accident, even if you don't feel pain. The doctor may notice injuries that haven't become apparent yet and can do tests to check your overall wellness. If you do have injuries, the doctor's report will be a critical piece of your compensation claim.
Were you recently in an accident? You may want to consult with a personal injury attorney. They can advise you on how to document your injuries and communicate with the insurance company.