To begin the process of recovery for damages after a car accident, the best thing is to go to an attorney right away. Let your attorney handle it. There may be a claim through New York State. The state has certain policies that enable you to recover when there is no insurance available. There may be other theories, such as an unsafe condition that existed. Attorneys who practice in this area are trained to look for those problems in the case.
The odds of obtaining financial recovery increases with attorney representation. There may be other people who are liable or alternate theories of liability. From your own insurance, you can purchase underinsured coverage, a type of insurance to protect yourself in the event the other driver does not have enough coverage.
It is very important to seek medical treatment right away. Whether you consider yourself to have a serious condition or not, you should still be examined by a physician. Insurance companies like to see that you sought treatment right away, otherwise they assume your injuries are not significant. There seems to be a presumption that seeking medical treatment immediately after an accident supports the presumption that your injuries are a result of the accident. If a longer period lapses, the insurance company may say that your injuries were pre-existing or emanated from another event. A skilled lawyer may find ways around these presumptions, it’s better to seek immediate treatment.
The insurance companies also have a presumption that whatever is contained in your medical record is true and accurate. For example, if you go to a doctor and say, “I hurt my neck when a car rear-ended me”, it tends to be more believable than if you just told your neighbor. Those medical records will then be introduced into the evidence, not only to support your ailment or your injury but to support the cause of the injury. That statement in the medical record would carry a lot of weight and would benefit your claim, especially if made close to, or immediately after, the impact.
You still need to be mindful of what you share with your physician regarding the accident; whatever you say can be used against you. You can be cross-examined on it. We recently settled a case because of a statement that was made by the injured to a medical professional. The client told the physician he had alcohol early in the morning the day of the accident. The accident occurred around New Year’s Eve and the hour was late. They asked him about alcohol consumption for purposes of medical treatment, so he didn’t think there was any damage sharing that information. However, anything that’s said can and will be used against you.
Paying for Treatment
When it comes to paying these medical bills, in New York, they are covered through no-fault insurance; meaning if you are the driver of the vehicle and you have insurance, your medical bills are covered through insurance. You must notify your insurance company right away to ensure your medical bills are covered. Failure to notify an insurance company can result in the denial of coverage. The same is true if you are unable to work because of the accident.
If the bills are denied by the insurance company, sometimes the doctor, chiropractor, or whoever is providing treatment, may agree to take a lien or you can go into arbitration to determine if no-fault insurance must cover those bills.
For more information on Paying Medical Bills When Engaged in a Lawsuit, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (631) 467-0700 today.
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