Not all injuries are visible. Cuts and bruises look terrible when they first happen, but they usually heal quickly, leaving no long-lasting pain. In fact, they often look worse than they feel. Injuries that can cause long-lasting pain, such as whiplash from car accidents, often do not leave any visible signs at all. Even worse, they sometimes do not start to hurt immediately after the accident, so it can be days or weeks before you even realize how severe your injuries are.
When the car accident first happens, you might think that you are absolutely fine; you might even decline to go to the emergency room to be evaluated for injuries because you are so sure that you are not hurt. Sometime later, though, you may begin to suffer from back or neck pain so severe that it causes you to miss work, and the pain may be difficult to treat.
When the pain does not start until later, it can be difficult to prove in a lawsuit that injuries from the car accident were the actual cause of the pain. If you do not go to the doctor about the pain until it has been going on for months, your doctor might not know that the pain is because of the accident and might look for another cause.
In a personal injury case, however, reports from physicians are your best evidence. It is in your interest to get as much documentation from doctors as you can immediately after the accident, even if at that time you think your injuries are minor.
Documentation of Visible and Invisible Injuries
If you have any visible injuries because of the car accident, take pictures of them as soon as you can. If anyone else was in the car with you, have him or her photograph your injuries at the scene of the accident before you even go to the emergency room.
The report from an emergency room doctor is an important piece of evidence. The only time this doctor has ever seen you is right after the accident. Doctors must write a report about your visit before releasing you from the emergency room. Ask the doctor to include it in the report if you must take time off work because of the accident. If the doctor just gives you a verbal recommendation to take time off work, you cannot use that as evidence of lost wages. You need written documentation.
If at all possible, visit your primary care doctor in the first 48 hours after the accident. Show him or her the emergency room report, and ask your doctor to write his or her own recommendations for treatment. If your primary care doctor recommends following up with a specialist, make an appointment with the specialist and get his or her report as soon as possible.
Contact Brock Ohlson About Car Accidents Resulting in Injuries
After you have gathered as much documentation as you can about the injuries you sustained in a car accident, show that documentation to a personal injury lawyer if you plan to file a lawsuit.
Contact Brock Ohlson, Nevada’s Personal Injury Lawyer, to find out the next steps in pursuing your case.