If you’ve been injured in an accident, you may feel like the right thing to do is to “be strong,” or “tough it out” when it comes to your injuries. While this may be a natural response, don’t let this inclination cause to you not be honest about your pain and symptoms. In my experience, the No. 1 thing that some accident victims do is to minimize the extent of their injuries at first, which causes them to do several other things that can destroy their ability to recover compensation for their injuries, thus cheating themselves out of the compensation they deserve. Here are 4 ways that minimizing your injuries can negatively impact your ability to be compensated after an accident:
- Not Seeing A Doctor Promptly. By minimizing an injury, or downplaying the pain you experience after an accident, injured people often put off seeking appropriate medical treatment soon after an accident. By delaying seeking treatment right away, you run the risk of your injuries getting worse. Also, by not properly addressing your injuries soon after an accident, you give insurance adjusters ammo to use against you to deny your claim. By playing “tough guy/gal” you allow the insurance company to claim that you weren’t really injured in the accident, and they will claim that if you were really injured, you would have gone to the doctor right away. It’s important not to downplay your injuries after an accident. Seek out appropriate medical treatment, including emergency room treatment if needed.
- Not Admitting Your Limitations. Sometimes it’s hard for people to admit their limitations. Often times, pride prevents injured people from asking for help when they need it. By not admitting your limitations following an injury, you can reinjure yourself, and delay your recovery. Additionally, by over-exerting yourself, trying to return to work too soon, or pushing your way through day-to-day activities (even though they cause you a lot of pain), you can ruin your ability to recover the compensation you need to pay your medical expenses, and restore your health to the level it was before the accident. It’s best to admit your limitations, and make your health and recover your #1 priority. If you feel pressured to return to work because of financial reasons, visit our website for information about PIP coverage, and payments available to assist you financially during your recovery.
- Not Reporting All of Your Symptoms. After an car wreck, or other accident, people often only focus on the most painful symptoms, thus minimizing areas of their body with less pain. However, this can be a big mistake. Often times, the small nagging pains in your neck, back, or shoulder can, in the end, turn out to be some of the worst injuries. Therefore, it’s important to address all of your symptoms with your doctor, and disclose all of the symptoms and pain you are experiencing, no matter how minor you may feel it is.
- Failing to Follow Your Doctor’s Advice. To make a full recovery, you need to be honest with your doctor about your injuries, and then you need to do exactly what the doctor tells you to do. Failing to follow your doctors orders can prevent you from receiving adequate compensation. Insurance company lawyers will tell the jury that you didn’t follow doctors orders, and that if you were really hurt you would have done what the doctor told you to do. While this isn’t necessarily true, such an argument is very effective with juries, and will usually hurt your case.
After an accident, injured persons should always seek medical treatment, no matter how small or insignificant they feel their injuries might be. Be honest about the pain you are experiencing, and don’t ignore your pain and limitations. If you want to know more about what you can do to protect your injury claim, request a copy of our free book: “10 Deadly Mistakes That Can Kill Your Texas Accident Case.”