5 Mistakes to Avoid When Dealing with Doctors After an Accident

should i go to the doctor after a car accident

Those who are unfortunate to have been injured in an auto accident are usually overwhelmed with countless thoughts and emotions after the fact. One of the first things you are advised to do after a car crash is to summon for emergency medical attention, visit an urgent care clinic, or see a doctor. Whether you broke your bone or sustained a sprain, a doctor should evaluate the full extent of your injuries, the symptoms of which you might not notice for days after the accident.

Most people who survive an auto accident make time for a doctor’s appointment, making the accident a part of their medical record. When dealing with doctors, nurses, physical therapists, and other medical professionals after an injury crash, it’s important to avoid common mistakes that can hurt your insurance claim.

Mistake #1: Waiting too Long to Receive Treatment

Those who wait too long to be evaluated by a medical professional after a car accident give the impression that they were not injured. Insurance companies will downplay claims for people who waited weeks to seek care. Ultimately, if you wait too long to seek treatment, it can seem like the injury from which you’re suffering is unrelated to the car accident.

If you are in pain after an accident, do not tough it out. Your claim will have a better chance of success the sooner you get help. Be sure to seek treatment before filing a claim or talking to a car accident lawyer about your claim. This will show that your health is your top priority.

Mistake #2: Dishonesty

Failing to be completely truthful about your condition and pain in an attempt to exaggerate your misfortune can backfire when the doctor evaluating you realizes you are trying to be misleading. Doctors are investigators who seek to pinpoint the cause of your discomfort and provide treatment may run several tests to conduct their investigations, which can uncover dishonesty. When a doctor has a suspicion that you are dishonest, he or she might take your injuries less seriously, which will ultimately hurt your insurance claim.

Mistake #3: Missing Scheduled Medical Appointments

When evaluating your medical records, your insurance company will check to see if you missed any doctor’s appointments. If you do, your chart will likely indicate a “DNS” or “did not show.” Skipping an appointment for a check-up, lab work, or even a physical therapy session gives insurance adjusters room to argue that you were not “badly injured” from the accident and/or that you do not care to heal. Your doctor or therapist might also question your commitment to your recovery.

Showing up late or not giving notice that you must miss an appointment might annoy your doctor and his or her staff. Remember, irritated doctors and therapists do not make good witnesses should they ever need to comment on your recovery in court.

Avoid the potential issues that can follow missing doctors appointments by simply keeping them from the very beginning of your treatment to the very end. Be sure to reschedule any appointments that you cannot keep.

Mistake #4: Providing Incorrect Information About the Crash

Accidents occur rapidly and unexpectedly; as such, they often leave victims confused and unsure about what happened. What most people know is that they got hurt, but they don’t usually understand the mechanics that led to their injury. Often, accident victims assume the other driver was fully to blame for their accident and injuries; even so, it’s best to limit the details of your accident when asked about it at the doctor’s office. Accidentally admitting fault or placing blame might hurt your claim.

At the doctor’s office, you might be asked if your injuries resulted from a car accident and if so, to explain what happened. The staff might hand you a form requesting that you write out a detailed story of the crash and your symptoms. Questions you might find on the form include:

  • At what speed was the car that hit you traveling when the impact occurred?
  • How far was your car pushed after the impact?
  • How much damage did the other vehicle sustain?

It’s best to avoid answering questions you don’t know the answers to. If you report that the other driver hit you at about 50 miles per hour, and then accident photographs indicate the impact occurred at 15 miles per hour, it can damage your credibility, which can hurt your claim.

Mistake #5: Discussing your Accident Claim with your Doctor

Doctors enjoy practicing medicine and prioritize the health of their patients. Few doctors enjoy being questioned by lawyers or taking any part in a legal proceeding. Your doctor’s primary concern is for you to get better. He or she does not need the details of your lawsuit to accomplish this mission. Do not discuss issues in your legal claim or mention that you have filed a lawsuit. Your doctor might think that you care more about the outcome of your case than your recovery. It might also make him or her less willing to treat you.

Seeking Financial Recovery after an Auto Accident in Orlando

If you suffered extensive injuries after an auto accident in Orlando, you’ll not only need to deal with medical professionals, but you’ll also likely need the advice and attention of a dedicated personal injury lawyer who resolves car accident claims.

Attorneys with The Umansky Law Firm have over 100 years of combined experience providing quality legal care for car crash victims throughout Central Florida. We provide free consultations 24/7. Contact us or complete our contact form and get started on a successful claim today.