The day started out just like every other day, but before the day came to an end, you were in a life-altering motor vehicle accident. The accident wasn’t your fault and may have been prevented by the driver of the other vehicle. Your car is likely a complete loss, and your body hurts all over.
Bills that just keep coming…
Unfortunately, the victim of the accident isn’t the only person affected by injury through car accidents. These accidents can take a huge toll on the families involved as well. Loss of income, medical and rehabilitation costs, and possibly even the cost of a caregiver add up during the recovery process. Consequently, the majority of personal injury claims are filed due to car accident injuries.
Injury lawyers specialize in accident claims and personal injury lawsuits. They can advise if your claim is a good candidate for a lawsuit and answer questions about your rights. Nearly one person is killed in a car accident every 15 hours in Ontario. Studies have shown that most car accidents are preventable and the collision was the result of the carelessness or negligence of one of the drivers.
Car accidents can cause a variety of injuries ranging from minor cuts and bruises to significant, life-altering injuries. One injury that is the most prevalent is a head injury. Some head injuries may be external and cause cuts and bruises to the face and scalp. Other head injuries can result in a mild concussion, or worse yet, a traumatic brain injury. A traumatic brain injury can cause seizures, visual disturbances, headaches, memory loss, and changes in speech abilities.
Neck injuries are also a quite common result of a car accident. In minor cases, soft tissue is damaged causing neck strain or a mild case of whiplash. More severe neck injuries can cause serious nerve damage and herniated or slipped discs resulting in headaches, pain, muscle spasms, reduced motion in the neck, and pain that radiates into your arms and shoulders.
Depending on how severe the accident is, some accident victims may experience broken bones, internal injuries to their organs, or even psychological and emotional injuries such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
Immediate steps to take post-accident
If in the unfortunate event that you become the victim of a car accident, there are some important things you should do immediately after the accident to protect yourself. The most important first step is to see a doctor. Have a doctor assess you and provide treatment for any injuries. Even if you feel that you haven’t been injured, often a doctor can find injuries that you aren’t aware of. Some injuries take a few days, or even weeks, to appear and if left untreated can cause a significant health risk.
Take detailed notes straight away
You should also notify your insurance agent as quickly as possible. Your insurance company must be notified within seven days of the accident in order for you to file a claim. Be sure to document all of the details of the accident. Include all of the names of the people involved in the accident; names and contact information for all witnesses; the date and time of the accident; road conditions and visibility of the area in which the accident occurred; and what you were treated for and by whom, as well as any injuries you feel you sustained.
You should make an accident benefits claim through your insurance and consult with a personal injury lawyer. If you were injured due to the negligence of another person you are likely entitled to sue the at-fault party for your loss and injuries in an area of law known as tort. Injury lawyers are experienced in car accident laws and can likely negotiate a better settlement than you could by representing yourself.