After being injured in an accident, people often get immediate medical care. Unfortunately, many people do not realize that they should continue to see their doctor to keep their medical records accurate and up to date.
A gap in medical treatment might jeopardize your personal injury claims. Injured victims can sue negligent defendants for damages or pursue insurance claims. In both cases, the injured person needs their medical records to prove the extent and severity of their injuries. A gap in medical treatment might raise red flags in your case and cost you compensation. With the help of a lawyer, you can explain why you have a gap in treatment that hopefully allows you to maximize compensation. Medical care is expensive, and not everyone can afford multiple doctor visits. Ideally, you should get medical attention immediately after your injuries. You should also try to make regular visits to a doctor if possible to update your condition.
If you were injured in an accident but have not seen a doctor for some time, our Arkansas personal injury lawyers can help you explain why. For a free assessment of your claims, call our offices at (479) 316-0438.
How a Gap in Medical Treatment Affects Your Personal Injury Claim in Arkansas
Injured victims often receive emergency medical care after an injury but do not follow up with their doctors again. This might be because injured victims have a positive prognosis, and additional treatment or doctor visits are not entirely necessary. Doctors often tell patients to continue with their treatment plans at home and only return if their condition worsens. As such, many injured victims are left with glaring gaps in their medical records that can affect their compensation in a lawsuit or insurance claim.
Your medical records are extremely important in a personal injury lawsuit because they help to establish the extent and severity of your injuries. The more severe your injuries are, the more significant your potential damages are. A gap in medical treatment might give a jury the wrong impression that your injuries were not severe and that additional medical attention was unnecessary. Our Bella Vista personal injury attorneys can help you make up for a gap in medical treatment and hopefully maximize your damages.
A gap in medical treatment might place your entire case in jeopardy. Various other damages, like lost wages from missing work, physical pain, and emotional suffering, are rooted in the physical injuries you sustained in the accident. A gap in your medical treatment might give the impression that your injuries were not severe, so the rest of your damages must not be very severe either. Even if you are successful and the defendant is held liable, a jury might be less willing to award you the full value of your damages.
Insurance claims, much like lawsuits, rely on medical records and other evidence to determine how claims are paid out. While insurance providers follow their own rules and do not necessarily conform to courtroom procedures, a gap in medical treatment might still be considered a red flag.
Insurance companies want to know that your case is not fraudulent. Sometimes, people in accidents exaggerate their injuries to get a bigger payout from their insurance provider. A gap in medical treatment might lead the insurance company to believe your injuries are not that serious, and they might offer a smaller settlement or even deny your claim altogether. Our Benton County personal injury attorneys can help you file your claim and defend you when the insurance company begins to question the authenticity of your story.
How Do I Explain a Gap in Medical Treatment When Claiming Damages in an Arkansas Personal Injury Claim?
If you are concerned because you already have a gap in medical treatment, you can still get all the compensation you deserve to cover your damages. A gap in medical treatment might be concerning for insurance companies and juries, but it might be easily explainable. Our Arkansas personal injury lawyers can help you figure out how to explain your case so you do not risk missing out on valuable compensation.
One of the most common reasons people have a gap in medical treatment is because medical treatment is very expensive. Some people, especially those without health insurance, can only go to the doctor when they absolutely have to. After receiving medical care immediately after an accident, many people do not go back to the doctor unless they feel their condition is not improving or getting worse.
In other cases, further medical treatment is simply unnecessary. Perhaps your injuries, although very serious, are expected to fully heal as long as you diligently follow your doctor’s treatment plan. We can even point to your doctor’s notes in your medical records to prove in court or to an insurance company that there was no reason to go back to the doctor after your initial visit.
It is not unusual for people to live in very rural or remote areas in Arkansas. For these people, a doctor’s office or hospital might be out of reach even if they can afford additional treatment. Many people do not live close to medical care, and repeated doctor’s visits are simply inaccessible. A jury or insurance company might be understanding of your situation in such a case.
When Should I Get Medical Treatment After Being Injured in Arkansas?
You should first receive medical attention immediately after you are injured. Ideally, you should also receive additional medical care somewhat regularly after that, depending on how bad your injuries are. Not only does this ensure that your physical wellbeing is cared for, but that your medical records are accurate and up to date for when you pursue legal action.
To maintain accurate medical records, you should go back to your doctor as often as necessary. If additional visits are unnecessary, you might still want to make a few trips back to your doctor for a checkup to ensure your recovery is progressing as it should. Doing so will make your medical records and damages much harder to challenge.
Call Our Arkansas Personal Injury Lawyers for Help
After being injured in an accident or by someone else’s intentional actions, you should get medical care as soon as possible. A gap in your medical records might put your case at risk and cost you compensation. For a free case evaluation, call our Springdale personal injury attorneys at (479) 316-0438.
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