Avoid Trouble With Your Case: Work With the Doctor
Houston Attorney Steve Lee has been protecting the injured of Houston for over three decades. By helping those who have been injured in traffic accidents, construction accidents, or those who have been injured by drunk drivers, Steve Lee has established himself as a fierce advocate for the injured. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, contact Steve Lee for a free legal consultation today.
The most important elements of any successful car accident injury case are the medical records and the testimony of the doctor that treated you. In fact, the whole case hinges on the fact that you were injured in the car wreck. If this were simply about property damage, then there probably wouldn’t be a case at all.
But the point is that you were injured, and that this injury caused you to be hurt in ways that have cost you financially. In order to be fairly compensated, it is imperative that you take the following steps. Believe us when we tell you that the insurance companies have a vested financial interest in paying you as little as possible, and they are looking for any bit of leverage that they can get to either lower your settlement or deny it entirely.
After a serious accident, go to the hospital. Immediately. Don’t wait until tomorrow. Don’t “tough it out” or postpone. Hospitals don’t close. There is someone there at all times. There is NO EXCUSE for not seeing a doctor immediately. And the reason it is important is that if you don’t, it gives insurance company lawyers all sorts of arguments to make that could weaken your case. “He couldn’t have been hurt too bad. He didn’t even go to the hospital,” or “His injuries wouldn’t have been so bad if he had gone to the hospital instead of going home,” are two very popular lines of argument for insurance company lawyers.
Be utterly honest with your doctor. This means tell him EVERYTHING about your past medical history. Not only will this help the doctor prescribe the best course of treatment and therapy for you, but any incomplete information, no matter how inconsequential it may seem, can be picked up and exploited by insurance company lawyers. Also, DO NOT EXAGGERATE OR MINIMIZE any pain you feel. Be completely honest about the extent of your injuries.
He’s a doctor, not a lawyer. Don’t talk about your case. Don’t talk about which lawyer you are going to hire. Don’t talk about anything but your injuries and your health. “Doctor-Patient Confidentiality” goes out the window once a personal injury lawsuit is filed.
Be on time all the time for your appointments. Attend your doctor’s appointments religiously. Attend any physical therapy or rehabilitation sessions religiously. As part of the court process, insurance companies get to see all of your medical records. If you skip an appointment, they will know about it. Which means that they will use the “How injured can he be if he doesn’t even bother to show up for his doctor’s appointments?” argument.
Keep track of any pain that you feel. As crazy as this sounds, you should keep a “pain journal.” Every day you should write down what sort of pain you are feeling, how bad it is, and where you are feeling it. Give the journal to your doctor at every appointment. The reason for doing it is to show the insurance company that your pain is not just based on your say so. Again, DO NOT EXAGGERATE OR MINIMIZE. Be nothing but honest.
If the injury is keeping you from working, tell your doctor. Or if it even prevents you from doing the job as well as you normally do, you should let your doctor know. This is the sort of thing that has to be in the medical records in order to receive loss of income compensation.
Don’t stop your medical treatment until you are completely healed and the doctor gives you a clean bill of health. Yes, going to see the doctor can be annoying. Yes, physical therapy often feels like torture. Yes, keeping track of all those pills and medications can seem impossible. BUT THEY HAVE TO BE DONE. Each course of treatment has to be followed to its conclusion. If you stop going to the doctor, then insurance companies and juries have a tendency to believe it’s because you are no longer feeling any ill effects. That is the last thing that you want them to think.
All of this might seem to be a lot to keep track of, but this is all part of making your injury case as seamless as possible. Believe us when we tell you that the insurance company is looking for any excuse to give you nothing. By following these simple rules religiously, it will make our job that much easier.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in the Houston area, contact Attorney Steve Lee for a free legal consultation today.