What to do about car accident injuries that appear late

Posted on: 25 April 2016

When you get into a vehicle accident, you typically get medical treatment right away and contact your insurance company for a settlement. Unfortunately, not all injuries occur right away, so you might have assumed you weren't injured and didn't get a diagnosis in time, which can keep you from the settlement money you deserve. Here are some things to know about injuries that might appear late and what to do about them.

Know What Injuries Appear Late

There are a variety of injuries that often appear late, whether it is days, weeks, or even months after the accident. These include soft-tissue injuries, particularly of the back, spine, and neck. You might also experience signs of having whiplash or a concussion long after the accident has occurred. During an accident, you are often running on adrenaline, so it can take a while before you relax and realize your discomforts or pain are from the incident. If you have found that weeks after the accident, you have a headache that won't go away or your back pain is worsening, it is time to contact a doctor. It is also possible that the injury is emotional, such as post-traumatic stress disorder or anxiety disorder, as a result of the accident.

Get Medical Attention Immediately

As soon as you experience a potential injury or any sort of pain after an accident has occurred, you need to see a doctor. It doesn't matter how long it has been since you were involved in the vehicle collision or whether or not you have already received your settlement; this needs to be your first step. Let the doctor know about the accident and whether or not you had pains or injuries at that time. Following the examination, they will let you know if your current ailments are from the accident or from something brand new. If from the accident, make sure you save all documentation, including the diagnosis, co-pays, and money spent on the prescriptions given or deductibles you had to pay.

Call Your Insurance Company

Make sure your next step is to call your insurance company. If you have already received and approved of the settlement offer, it might be too late, but you should still call your insurance company. They will let you know if you are able to adjust your claim based on new injuries that have come to light. Hopefully, the settlement offer is not yet complete and you will have time to adjust the claim.

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

If the insurance company says it is too late to adjust your claim, contact a personal injury legal firm. They will look over the paperwork from your insurance company based on the accident and original claim, and take a look at the documentation from your doctor. This is your best bet when trying to get benefits from late-appearing car accident injuries.