You should go to the hospital after a car accident even if you do not feel hurt because some injuries you might sustain in a car accident may not be readily apparent. Others may worsen over time if left untreated. To be safe and to protect your health, allow a medical professional to examine you.
Several injuries might occur without causing a break in your skin or external bleeding. The trauma of a car accident may lead to injuries like sprains, strains, and ruptured tendons. If you do not go to the hospital immediately after a car accident, seek immediate medical care if you notice injury symptoms such as pain, swelling, bruising, muscle spasms, or numbness.
Car Accident Injuries that Might Not Be Readily Apparent
The best way to ensure you did not sustain injuries after a car accident is to have a health care professional perform a thorough examination. Even serious injuries might go unnoticed in the immediate aftermath of an accident.
According to Mayo Clinic research, whiplash, an injury often associated with rear-end car accidents, may have symptoms such as pain, stiffness, difficulty moving, fatigue, dizziness, blurry vision, and cognitive delays that might not be readily apparent for several days after an accident.
Similarly, Johns Hopkins Medicine describes the following symptoms of a concussion—headache, tinnitus, nausea, fatigue, mental confusion, memory loss, and temporary loss of consciousness—that might not become noticeable for several days following the accident.
These injuries, if left untreated or undiagnosed, may worsen over time and impede or lengthen your recovery time. Seeing a doctor can help ensure you receive prompt treatment and may lead to a beneficial prognosis after a car accident.
The Cost of Treating Your Injuries
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), car accidents cost almost $75 billion in 2017. Those costs included necessary medical care as well as loss of productivity.
The financial impact you experience after a car accident may include medical care for any injuries you sustained regardless of their severity. Your financial impact might also include income you miss when your injuries prevent you from working and the costs you incur to repair or completely replace your damaged vehicle.
California Civil Code (CIV) §1431.2 allows you to seek financial compensation for these damages and for pain and suffering, mental anguish, and emotional distress. Your lawyer may help you assess the cost of treating your injuries and assign a financial value to your compensation claim that covers your tangible and intangible expenses and losses.
Your Ability to Seek Recovery Has a Time Limit
While you have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver, the time you have to file is limited. Generally, the statute of limitations found in California Code of Civil Procedure (CCP) §335.1 allows two years from the date of the car accident for injured parties to file a lawsuit. Non-compliance with the statute of limitations can have costly consequences.
Your legal team might be able to ensure timely filing of your lawsuit, which can help you avoid inadvertently giving up your right to file suit. Protect your filing ability by calling a personal injury law firm right away.
Your Car Accident Report May Indicate Injuries
If you are injured in a car accident, State of California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) guidelines require you to file a car accident report. The car accident report may contain many important details, including notes about your injuries. Your car accident report may indicate:
- Your seating position in relation to where your vehicle was impacted
- Whether or not the impact was forceful enough to deploy the airbags
- Whether or not you were ejected from the vehicle during the accident
The investigating officer may also make notes that describe any injuries you sustained that are readily visible. Obtain a copy of your car accident report immediately and share it and your medical records with your lawyer.
You May Be Able to Get Compensation for Your Injuries
You should go to the hospital after a car accident even if you are not hurt to have a medical professional assess your condition. Do not risk having unseen injuries worsen for lack of treatment.
If you do uncover injuries, Jacoby & Meyers Law Offices might be able to help you seek compensation from the at-fault driver for the cost of any treatments your injuries require. For a free case review with a member of our car accident team, call (888) 522-6291 today.