Documenting Your Injuries

Posted by: Oct 27, 2016Articles & Advice

Properly documenting your injuries is important to your personal injury case.  More importantly, it is critical to your medical care and your ability to ensure the best path to recovery.  Once you receive adequate medical treatment, you can contact a seasoned personal injury lawyer to assist you with bringing forward a claim for compensation.

When someone suffers an injury there are typically many different symptoms. For example, though all cervical strain/sprain (aka “whiplash”) injuries are different, they will often come with a constellation of symptoms.  Some of those symptoms will likely include pain in the back of the head radiating down the neck into one or both of the shoulders. Many people, when seeing the physician, will report this as simply “neck pain.” After all, doctors are not thinking about a potential claim, and the injured person isn’t thinking about “developing a claim,” but simply getting help.

As your claim develops, and future medical appointments note your shoulder pain or head pain, the insurance company will often argue that because it wasn’t reported explicitly in the initial records, it must have resulted from some incident other than the subject injury. To be clear, the insurance company may be acutely aware that its argument is bogus.  It doesn’t care. It is an argument they will put forth and lean on throughout the claim and potential litigation.

The insurance companies’ only interest in defending claims is paying as little as possible, or nothing at all. In dealing with unrepresented claimants, they will make ludicrous offers, and often intentionally misstate (to put it nicely) what you are entitled to. They will also be non-responsive and dismissive, in hope that you just go away or break down and accept it’s low-ball offer.

Once dealing with a personal injury attorney, they move to their second set of tricks. To minimize what you have gone through, the insurance companies will look first to your medical records. When they see refusal to seek medical help immediately after the accident, they often try and mold an argument that implies you weren’t really injured at the scene. When they see a recommendation to physical therapy that is not promptly followed up on, they argue that the injuries couldn’t be too bad, despite the myriad obvious practical life reasons that might stall the process. They will look to any gaps in treatment (e.g., your doctor or physical therapist asks you to follow up in 1 week, but you follow up in 1 month). If there is a “glass half full” aspect to these insurance company tactics, it’s that they employ them time and again.  We know how to combat these bogus arguments right out of the gate.  Personal injury attorney Michael Sabbeth has considerable experience and a distinguished track record of success in aggressively fighting and winning against insurance companies who rely on these false premises.

If you’ve been injured as a result of corporate or personal negligence, we look forward to doing the same for you.

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