Whether they are tackling the grind of the daily commute or handling day-to-day errands, with over 26 million California motorists on the road it is hardly surprising that even careful drivers may find themselves in a potentially severe accident. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration notes that over 37,000 Americans died in motor vehicle accidents in 2016 alone.
Even a relatively minor collision may lead to debilitating injuries that require intensive emergency medical care and rehabilitation. Such an accident may also prevent an individual from returning to work in the short or long term. While drivers may be able to recover certain expenses from their insurance provider, insurance companies are not always forthcoming when it comes to payment.
- Claim of lack of timeliness
Insurance companies often adhere to strict timelines when it comes to reporting both the accident itself and any related medical care. It is essential to contact an insurance carrier as soon as possible after a vehicle collision and to seek needed care immediately — even if injuries do not seem obviously severe.
- Claim of lack of evidence
When reporting an accident and seeking medical care, it is also important to keep detailed records about the facts of the incident and the extent and type of treatment related to it. To the extent possible, gather photographs, witness testimony and other evidence relating to the collision, and take care to save all relevant medical records.
- Claim of a preexisting condition
All too often insurance companies attempt to dismiss an auto injury claim due to a presumed preexisting injury. Maintaining a complete record of follow-up care with a physician may help to establish a clear connection between the accident and present injury.
However, an insurer may also try to use victims’ own medical history against them. Be wary about releasing medical information to an insurance company before reaching a settlement, especially any records not directly related to the auto injury.