How Long Do You Have to Seek Medical Treatment after an Accident in New York?
Accidents happen when we least expect them, and dealing with the accident and your injuries is never convenient. While your frustration is understandable, you should not delay medical treatment after an accident, as doing so could harm your case.
Deciding when to seek medical care is your decision. However, the best option for both your personal and financial health is to get medically evaluated and treated as soon as possible after an accident. Many conditions may not be obvious but can still have significant consequences for victims if left untreated. Acting quickly to address your injuries also shows the other involved parties that you recognize the severity of the crash and are serious about treating your injuries. You can always choose to seek a second opinion on the severity and prognosis of your injuries. To help ensure the success of your case, continue seeking medical treatment for as long as is necessary in New York. Inconvenient
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When Should You Get Medical Treatment After an Accident in New York?
Technically, there is no limit on how long you can wait to get medical treatment after an accident for the purposes of an injury lawsuit. However, there are a number of reasons why you should seek medical evaluation as soon as possible after an incident that causes you injury.
First, your health should be your first priority. In certain cases, some injuries sustained after an accident may seem mild but get worse over time. Others have the potential to turn into life-threatening conditions if untreated. Even if you think you are fine, you should always make sure by going to the hospital.
Second, acting quickly and decisively shows that you take your health and your injuries seriously. Getting medical attention immediately after an accident shows the insurance company and a potential jury that you did what you could to care for your injuries after someone else caused them.
Third, leaving a longer period of time between the accident and the medical treatment opens the door for the insurance company to claim that you sustained your injuries after the accident. By making this argument, the insurance company hopes to deflect liability for the full extent of your injuries. It is always best to leave as little doubt as possible when it comes to who caused your injuries.
How Long Should You Seek Medical Attention After an Accident in New York?
Establishing that you have sought continuous medical care is crucial when seeking compensation following an accident in New York. One trip to the hospital is not enough; you must continue getting treatment for your injuries to generate sufficient medical evidence.
Many accident injuries require long-term medical care. You might need surgeries, prescriptions, physical therapy, and other treatments to attend to your injuries properly. If there is a gap in your medical treatment, meaning you failed to get the care you needed following an accident or you paused treatment, your access to compensation could be in jeopardy.
Because of that, you must attend all visits with medical professionals. If you are referred to a specialist, like a neurologist or physical therapist, heed that referral. If you cannot make an appointment with your doctor, reschedule it. Do not underestimate the importance of seeking continuous medical treatment following an accident of any kind in New York. While some victims might consider pausing medical treatment because of the cost, it is important to trust in the fact that you can recover funds to compensate you for your medical expenses in a claim. And your chances of success will be much greater if you establish that you are committed to your recovery through getting continuous care for your injuries.
Should You Seek Medical Attention Even if You Feel Fine After a New York Car Accident?
Not all injuries sustained in accidents are apparent right away. Sometimes, victims might be unaware of injuries until days or weeks after an incident. To prevent that from happening and ensure you get the proper treatment immediately, you should seek medical attention after an accident of any kind, even if you feel fine.
Many accidents, such as motor vehicle accidents, can be traumatic events. Victims might not feel pain right away because of increased adrenaline. Even serious injuries might be ignored because of this adrenaline spike. Other injuries, such as whiplash and similar soft tissue injuries, might feel like average soreness following an accident. Because of this, victims might assume they are fine and refuse medical attention, only to feel the full impact of their injuries until days after an incident.
Internal bleeding and even certain head injuries might also be undetectable to a victim after an accident in New York. Medical professionals can more easily identify such injuries and prescribe the proper treatment. If left unattended to, initially ignored car accident injuries might worsen dramatically, causing further damage to a victim. Furthermore, if you refuse medical treatment initially and then attempt to seek compensation against a negligent driver, recovery might be more challenging.
Common Accident Injuries that Require Medical Treatment in New York
No matter how forceful an accident may be, any collision or incident has the potential to cause serious or even lethal injuries to everyone involved. While victims may be able to tell immediately what hurts, some of these injuries may not present themselves for days or even weeks after the accident. Below are just some of the most common injuries that accident victims may sustain that can worsen without immediate medical treatment.
When an accident creates a forceful impact on the body, you should be concerned about fractures. Accidents can lead to fractured ribs, arms, wrists, or legs, which may require surgery or casts to allow the body to heal properly. Broken bones are commonly sustained in car accidents and slip and fall accidents. If untreated, fractures can very easily become worse.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), such as concussions, occur when forceful impact causes the brain to make contact with the skull. Brain injuries may be caused without any direct contact to the head and may not present with any immediate symptoms, which is why they can go undetected until they become more serious. It is critical that you seek medical evaluation if you believe you may have sustained a TBI.
The force of an auto accident may cause your neck to twist or bend in a way that can cause soft tissue damage. This injury has the potential to hinder most body movements and create substantial discomfort for as long as it is left untreated.
Sometimes, accident victims may suffer damage to their internal organs. If undetected, this damage may only be discovered once it has created health complications that will require surgical procedures. Again, this is another condition that may not be apparent immediately after an accident.
Importance of Seeking Medical Attention When Filing an Accident Lawsuit in New York
New York operates under a no-fault system for auto accidents, meaning victims can only seek compensation via lawsuits when their injuries meet the state’s serious injury threshold. To prove that your injuries qualify you to sue, you must get the proper medical treatment.
Many injuries under New York’s serious injury threshold, such as death and dismemberment, are immediately apparent after a car accident. Others, such as permanent loss of use or permanent consequential limitation of use of a body organ, which could be due to internal injuries, might not be identifiable right away. Loss of a fetus, which also qualifies a victim to file a car accident lawsuit in New York, might be unknown for some time, depending on the circumstances.
If you do not establish that your injuries meet the serious injury threshold by going to the hospital immediately after a collision, proving that a negligent driver caused your injuries might become more challenging. A defendant might claim that your injuries are unrelated to a recent accident, allowing them to avoid liability.
The serious injury threshold applies to all persons covered by personal injury protection insurance that are hurt in auto accidents, such as pedestrians, bicyclists, passengers, and drivers. Motorcyclists are not covered by personal injury protection insurance and can sue regardless of the severity of their injuries. They will still need to provide medical documentation of their damages. If you were hurt in another type of accident, you will not have to meet the serious injury threshold to file a lawsuit in New York.
What if You are Unhappy with Your Medical Treatment After an Accident in New York?
You always have the option to seek a second opinion on your injuries and prognosis for recovery. Your legal case for recovery after an injury in New York will not be affected if you choose to get a second opinion.
For certain types of injuries, such as TBIs or spinal injuries, a specialist’s opinion may be necessary to determine the extent of medical care and physical therapy necessary to fully recover. This information will be vital for determining damages in your potential lawsuit. If you are unhappy with your medical treatment, our experienced Bronx personal injury lawyers can help you find a specialist or doctor to seek further treatment from. It is important that you feel comfortable and confident in the capabilities of your medical team.
How Long Do You Have to File a Lawsuit for Accident Injuries in New York?
According to New York law, personal injury victims must file their personal injury lawsuit within three years of the date of the accident.
The longer you wait to get medical treatment, the harder it will be to file your suit within the time limit (also known as the “statute of limitations”). Filing a lawsuit may take time, particularly for complicated injuries, so it is important that you act quickly and speak with our Garden City car accident lawyers as soon as possible to give yourself the best chance of recovery.
We Can Get You Compensation for Medical Treatment of Your Accident Injuries
To speak with one of our experienced Queens personal injury attorneys for free, call The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083.