After a car crash, depending on the severity of it, you may feel fine and decide you don’t need medical attention. No one will make you go to ER or Urgent Care (unless, of course, you are noticeably in need of it), so it is all up to you. But what happens if you don’t go and then a few days later, even weeks later, you start getting headaches or other aches and pains in the neck and shoulder area? How do you explain this new pain?
You didn’t go to the hospital, so what happen if your injuries are delayed after a car crash? Can you still be compensated for them if the accident was caused by another person? You better believe the insurance company for the other party will do all it can to argue that these new aches and pains have nothing to do with the accident. So, the first takeaway here is: always seek medical attention after an accident if you in any way struck your head or were jolted backwards, forwards, or sideways – even if you feel fine after the sudden shock of it.
What happens in New Hampshire if your injuries are delayed after a car crash?
You are in an accident but feel not aches and pains, so you go home after sharing insurance and contact details with the other party. You are not at fault for the accident, and as such, the other party’s insurer will more than likely issue you a check without qualms for the expense to repair your vehicle. It could have been worse, you say to yourself: you could have been injured.
Maybe you spoke to soon. A few days later you wake up with a headache and sore neck. The headache continues. Your balance is off just a bit. You think it will pass, so you still don’t go to the doctor. But the aches and pains remain and your headaches continue.
Finally, you go to the doctor. The doctor asks about anything happening out of the ordinary and you mention the car accident and that you hit your head on the window but felt fine after it. You are diagnosed with a minor head concussion and whiplash. You are provided with a treatment plan.
And though it’s minor, you had to spend money on it and will have to pay for the limited treatment. So, you contact your auto insurance to advise them of the injury.
Your insurer negotiates with the other party’s insurance company. The defending insurance company refuses to compensate you for your injury, stating it could have been caused by something else and suggesting you are trying to get extra money from the accident.
Now there’s a chance of a fight ahead of you unless your attorney can negotiate better than your auto insurer.
If you had gone to the hospital directly after the accident, a paper trail would have been established between you and the accident, and it would have been harder for the insurer to deny your claim.
What are the most common types of delayed injuries and their symptoms?
Head injuries and soft tissue injuries, like whiplash, can – when mild – materialize later, well after the accident. Some symptoms to look out for after an accident that seemingly results in no injuries include:
- Headaches, which can be indicative of head or neck injuries;
- Neck and/or shoulder pain or stiffness, which can be indicative of whiplash or spinal injuries;
- Abdominal pain, which can be indicative of internal bruising/bleeding;
- Numbness and visible bruises, which can be indicative of a herniated disc.
These injuries are likely not severe, but if untreated, they could become more serious. So, regardless if you went to the hospital directly after your accident or not, if you experience any of the above symptoms after a car accident, it is time to make an appointment or visit Urgent Care. Make sure you tell your doctor you were in an auto accident and get the documentation from the doctor stating the same.
Then, if the other party’s auto insurance refuses to pay for fair compensation, contact an experienced, resourceful personal injury lawyer in Manchester, New Hampshire for a free initial consultation. That way you know what your options are.