In many automobile accidents, people involved usually fail to realize they have suffered an injury. This commonly happens because your body quickly fills with adrenaline to deal with the stress of the situation and it masks the pain. By the time the adrenaline wears off, you have already left the scene of the accident.
Each year, nearly six million automobile accidents occur across the United States. Approximately 30,000 individuals lose their lives while approximately 2,300,000 suffer injuries. A significant amount of automobile accidents involve property damage, as well.
Inform Emergency Services of Your Injuries
Recently, a decision rendered by a state Supreme Court reinforces the reasons why you should always report injuries to the emergency services on site and immediately seek medical attention. In Damesh Woods v. Gregory Rouse, et al, the plaintiff was stopped at a red light when she was rear-ended by a dump truck and filed a personal injury lawsuit against the truck driver, his employer, and his insurance company.
When the police officer arrived at the scene, the plaintiff, her passenger and the truck driver told the officer that they were alright and that they did not suffer any injuries. The only damage that occurred as a result of the accident was damage to the plaintiff’s rear left bumper.
Nearly a month later, the plaintiff sought medical care for the first time since the accident when she reported experiencing neck pain and headaches to her chiropractor. The chiropractor diagnosed the plaintiff with a cervical sprain/strain, thoracic sprain/strain, lumbar sprain/strain, and cephalalgia which he believed was a result of the automobile accident.
However, when the plaintiff filled out the chiropractor’s intake form, she indicated that the symptoms that started occurring the week prior were also the same symptoms she had in 2008, which were unrelated to this accident. The plaintiff ended up having two spinal surgeries, which were performed by a doctor who claimed the injuries were related to the car accident.
Failing to Seek Medical Treatment Can Hinder Your Personal Injury Claims
Shortly after the plaintiff filed her lawsuit, one of the defendants retained a doctor to evaluate the plaintiff, who found there was no evidence of the need for medical intervention and that the accident did not cause the plaintiff’s injuries. The jury heard evidence from this doctor and the sheriff, who testified that no one was injured during the accident nor did anyone seek medical attention. They also heard evidence from the the plaintiff that she waited over a month to seek medical treatment because she believed the pain would go away over time. Based on the evidence, the jury found that the defendant’s negligence did not cause the injuries of the plaintiff, and did not award any damages to either side.
Contact Goldstein Hayes & Lina, LLC
As you can see, failing to seek medical attention in a timely fashion can hinder your personal injury claims. It is also very important for you to be honest and tell emergency services about any injuries you might have.
If you suffered personal injuries as a result of an automobile accident, you should contact the experienced attorneys at Goldstein Hayes & Lina, LLC. We are committed to helping you win your case.