Every year, thousands of individuals are injured in personal injury accidents in Arkansas. Most injured people have to get medical assistance for minor or severe injuries. Unfortunately, not all medical issues can be detected right after an accident. Your initial treating physician may tend to your immediate wounds without realizing there may be underlying issues, despite their best efforts. You may wonder whether you can ask for a second medical opinion for your personal injury. As you will see through this article, asking for a second medical opinion can save your life and help you fight for compensation in a personal injury claim. Our Fayetteville, AR personal injury attorney Ken Kieklak, invites you to keep reading as we discuss whether you can get a second medical opinion on your personal injury in Arkansas.
Reasons to Get a Second Medical Opinion After an Injury or Accident in Arkansas
After you have been injured in an accident such as a motorcycle, truck, or car accident in Arkansas, you will likely receive medical assistance, especially if your injuries were severe. During your initial assessment, a doctor will likely tend to any injuries you may have and recommend follow-up treatment. While this may seem like a straightforward process, injured victims may not fully understand what they need to do right after a car accident.
What’s even more critical to understand is that many injuries or health issues may develop as time goes by. For instance, your doctor may have missed an underlying health issue during your first evaluation. Even if a doctor exercises a reasonable effort to treat your injuries, some crucial details may slip through.
Getting a second medical opinion from another doctor can be an excellent way to prevent suffering from injuries that may take a while to show up. However, this is not the only reason you should get a second medical opinion. Consulting with a second medical professional can help you get a better understanding of any previous injury or underlying conditions.
There have been cases where doctors have engaged in negligence leading to medical malpractice claims. Consulting a second doctor can help you understand the extent of your treating physician’s negligence and build your case against your negligent physician. Some people fall into the trap of believing everything their doctor says. However, the best way to make sure your health is okay is to get a second medical opinion.
Filing a personal injury lawsuit requires you to gather relevant data that enables you to support your claim. Getting a second medical opinion can show your injuries actually exist, and your health issues are real. Medical professionals can also provide expert testimony in court. They can help you establish the extent of your injuries and the complications associated with them. In medical malpractice claims after your injury, expert testimonies can also help establish the negligence of your treating physician. Your personal injury attorney can help you get all the relevant data you need to build a strategic, compelling case.
How a Second Medical Opinion May Affect My Personal Injury Claim in Arkansas
If you have been involved in an accident and are filing a personal injury claim, you may wonder which laws may apply to your particular case. The first thing to understand is that Arkansas, like many other states, sets a limited time to file a personal injury lawsuit. This means that if you are filing your claim, you must comply with the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations establishes a specific time under which all claimants must submit their lawsuits with the court. For instance, if you were involved in a car accident in Arkansas, you will need to file your claim within three years from its occurrence. If you miss your deadline, the court may refuse to hear your case, and you may not have the means to fight for compensation. It is essential to get a second medical opinion before filing your claim with the court.
Another caveat to consider when filing your personal injury claim is Arkansas’ “modified comparative fault” system. It is normal for the defendant to argue that the plaintiff was partially or entirely at fault for their accident. In these cases, the court will evaluate the circumstances of your claim and determine whether you were partially liable for your accident. If you are found partially responsible, your compensation may be reduced based on the percentage of your liability. A second doctor can show, through their testimony or your medical records, the extent of your injuries, and how the defendant may have caused them.
After considering these critical aspects of your case with your Arkansas personal injury lawyer, you may start your filing process. The filing process is straightforward. Generally, you have to present your petition with the court and “serve” the other party. Once the defendant has been served, the court will schedule a date for trial. During the trial, you are responsible for showing the defendant’s negligence per personal injury law. This means you will have to show the defendant’s negligence by a preponderance of the evidence, which means convincing the factfinder that it is more probable than not that the defendant was negligent. This is where evidence of a second medical opinion or the expert testimony of a medical professional can have a significant impact.
One of the elements of your claim is called the “breach of duty.” In cases involving medical errors, you can use your second medical opinion record to show the defendant was negligent. Furthermore, you can use your evidence to show the extent of your injuries and how the defendant’s actions led to your losses. The process of filing your lawsuit and fighting for compensation may be complicated. It is in your best interest to get assistance from a skilled Arkansas personal injury lawyer who might advise you to seek a second medical opinion.
Contact Our Personal Injury Attorney for a Free Consultation in Arkansas
Ken Kieklak, Attorney at Law, represents injured victims in Arkansas. Thanks to years of experience handling countless personal injury cases, we have developed the skills to hold the liable parties accountable for your injuries. We will work tirelessly to defend and uphold your rights as an injured victim. Call our law offices today and schedule your free, confidential consultation. Our phone number is (479) 316-0438.
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