Injuries, be they lasting or short lived, in the aftermath of an accident can have a huge impact on the amount of money you’re able to recover in a personal injury claim. After all, injuries are among the largest component of the list of losses people can experience when an accident occurs. But determining the value placed on any given injury can be very difficult.
Injury Severity May Change Dramatically Over Time
One of the trickiest elements about assessing damages early on after an accident happens is determining the financial toll that medical treatment will have on the victim. For many injuries the initial assessment may be deceptive. Some initial soreness the day following an accident can turn into debilitating injuries in the months that follow. Also, what looks like a case of a few scrapes can result in life-long scars. Conversely, what may look like a bloody mess at the scene may turn out to be minimal physical injury with no lasting implications.
Making a decision on the what your case is worth based on initial assessment of the injuries suffered could be a huge mistake. Evaluating the value of a personal injury claim should always take a careful and measured approach.
Take, for instance, a rear-end collision. Typically, rear-end collisions implicate fault on the part of the driver in the rear, assuming that had they provided enough room between their car and the car in front, the accident could have been avoided.
If the victim experienced a slight back strain, perhaps, following the accident and after initial medical evaluation proved inconclusive for serious injury they might be tempted to take a quick settlement offer from the at-fault driver’s insurer that seemed quite generous given the lack of evidence that there was serious injury suffered. However, the sudden, blunt force from behind could have caused soft-tissue injuries that involved their spine.
Soft-tissue injuries often manifest symptoms only well after the accident that caused them. So while you might have seemingly suffered only minor bumps and bruises in the initial hours following the accident, the ultimate outcome could be a bit more serious and could require expensive medical treatment.
Let’s take the above example and presume you’d need further medical evaluation of your new symptoms a couple of months down the line. What happens if after that evaluation you require extensive treatment? What happens if you don’t respond well to that treatment and need to see a specialist? If you’d have taken that quick settlement offer, which seemed quite generous at the time, you would likely be on the hook for all of that medical treatment that you now need. And that’s because most settlement offers require your sign-off on terms, some of which may include a release of liability on the part of the at-fault driver and their insurer.
Making that initial decision to take the quick monetary offer could, therefore, have cost you in the long run.
Having an experienced personal injury attorney like the ones at Bizzieri Law Offices in Chicago is a great way of protecting yourself from the potential mistakes you might make in the aftermath of an accident. Understanding the pitfalls and the tactics of insurers, our accident attorneys work closely with you to ensure you are fully aware of the potential damages in your claim. We work to ensure you don’t leave compensation on the table when recovering from an accident caused by the neglect of others.
Call us today at 773.881.9000 if you’re looking for a Chicago personal injury lawyer that will be responsive and accessible, working hard to recover the highest award damages for you. The case review is free, and we never collect a fee unless we win damages in your case.