Personal Injury Claims: Reasons Why You Need to See a Doctor First

male-doc-clipboard-no-headIf you are injured in an accident, the first and most important step is to visit a medical professional for an evaluation and treatment. Not only are your health and well-being top priorities, without verification from a qualified medical expert of a significant injury, you may not have a valid claim.

If you attempt to file a personal injury claim without confirmation, from a doctor or other medical professional of the accident injury in question, it may be denied.

The timing of your treatment is also critical. If you wait to seek medical assistance, it becomes more challenging to establish a connection between the accident and your injury.

Below the Sacramento personal injury lawyers at the Arnold Law Firm discuss the importance of seeing a doctor before pursuing compensation for an injury claim. 

The Importance of Medical Records

If you plan to file a personal injury claim to recover compensation for medical bills and other damages, you need to see a doctor first.

Proper documentation of a medical examination by a healthcare professional is necessary so your lawyer and the insurance company can accurately assess the severity of your damages. A professional evaluation of the amount of compensation needed to support a full recovery relies on this information.

Some medical records you should preserve to help strengthen your claim include:

  • Medical bills
  • Receipts for prescription costs
  • Hospitalization records
  • Records of visits with therapists and psychologists
  • Proof of doctor visits
  • Proof of surgeries performed
  • Receipts for medical equipment needed (wheelchairs, crutches, etc.)

Following Your Treatment Plan 

If you fail to follow your doctor’s recommended medical treatment plan, your claim may be devalued and possibly denied by the insurance company. Most insurers attempt to minimize settlements and look for reasons to avoid paying for damages. They may say your injury is not significant, because you stopped treatment.

Continuing your medical treatment and attending all scheduled appointments removes valid medical reasons for an insurer to devalue or deny your claim. If you undergo a thorough treatment plan, and you can provide valid evidence of this, it will help support your claim.

Steps to Take After an Injury

If you are seriously injured, seek immediate medical attention. If your injury does not require immediate medical care, we suggest scheduling an appointment with your health care provider to get an official examination.

After your initial medical evaluation, we recommend doing the following:

      • Be honest about your injury and your condition – If you provide false, misleading or conflicting accounts about your injury or how it occurred, the insurers will quickly point this out and try to reduce or deny your claim.
      • Be careful when communicating with insurers and online – Keep communication about the status of your injury and how it occurred between you and your attorney. If you say too much to the insurance adjusters or post something online, it could be used against you.
      • Keep a medical journal – It is a good idea to keep your own personal medical journal throughout your recovery process. Take note of your prescriptions, improvements in your condition and any setbacks, including physical pain and suffering and mental/emotional trauma like depression, anxiety, insomnia, and loss of enjoyment of life.    

Seek Legal Assistance from a Licensed Attorney

If you are having trouble proving the severity of your injury or how it occurred, we recommend seeking legal assistance from a licensed attorney.

The Arnold Law Firm offers free initial consultations for injury victims. Schedule your no-cost, no-obligation case evaluation today. Your information is kept confidential, and we charge no legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf.

Call (916) 777-7777 to speak to a legal professional at the Arnold Law Firm or fill out a free online form.