If you plan on filing a claim after you have been injured in an auto accident, sooner would be better than later. If you are thinking you can claim an injury six months after the accident, you would be in for a big surprise. An attorney nor an insurance company is going to believe your injury came from your auto accident. After your auto accident, even if you do not feel like you are hurt, you should at least go and get checked out. Seeking medical care within a certain time frame after your auto accident would put you in a better position later on down the road to file an injury claim.
Make sure to see a doctor within 72 hours of your auto accident
After your auto accident, it would be wise to see a doctor ASAP. We wont go into why you need to do it within 72 hours, but it would be extremely advisable to. The at fault insurance company will scrutinize your medical care after your car wreck. If you dont see a doctor soon, they may not pay for your medical expenses. Insurance companies use software designed to help them determine how much your injury claim is really worth, or what they are willing to pay out on the claim. One of those entries is, when did you first go see a doctor about your injury. You sure dont want it to be a month after the auto accident.
Seeing a doctor at a later date in some instances wont hurt you as bad as you may think. As long as the doctor can explain why you waited to see them. Lets say you went to the ER after your car wreck. The doctor told you to take prescriptions for two weeks and then do a follow up with your PC. The Drugs you were taking were pain killers and muscle relaxers. The pain killers masked the pain of your injury, so you might think you are fine, while you are taking them. As soon as you stop taking the pain killers, the pain comes back, but this has been 3 weeks after the accident. A Doctor who treats auto accidents will more than likely note this in his doctors notes. You did exactly what the doctor at the ER told you to do, but the pain came back after you quit taking medication.
Claiming injury and filing an injury claim
Claiming injury is when you claim to have been hurt in a car wreck. Claiming you are injured does not need to wait. The insurance company needs to be put on notice of your claim. It would not be wise to wait 3 months and then claim you are injured. When you Claim injury you need evidence to back up your claim. This comes in the form of seeing a doctor for your injury. Its a simple formula really, never see a doctor , you dont have an injury claim, even if you are hurt.
Filing an injury claim is when you have medical bills associated with your injury from your auto accident
These may include
- ER visit
- Doctors visits
- Hospital bills
- Ambulance bills
Filing an injury claim will also get your reimbursed for lost time from work, pain and suffering, future medical bills. Pain and suffering may be defined as physical and emotion harm. Children may be afraid to get back into a car again. Your pain may be keeping you from doing normal things that you use to be able to do before the auto accident. Maybe you are really active and exercise or play sports, but you are no longer able to do so. These would all be examples of Pain and suffering
All states have a limitation on time for which you can file an injury claim
You cant just wait 5 years to file an injury claim and expect everything to work out in your favor, even if you saw a doctor right after the car wreck. The time limit from which you can file an injury claim varies from state to state. We have listed the time limits in each state here. In some states it may be only one year, in others it may be longer. Insurance companies do not want to pay you a fair amount for your injury claim. They feel you dont deserve it. They will do everything they can do to minimize your claims of injury.