New Jersey Car Accident FAQ - Do I Need to See a Doctor After My Auto Accident?

Was a police report filed?
  • Individuals involved in auto accidents often wonder if they still need to see a doctor if they did not sustain any serious injuries. If your accident was just a minor one, you may be under the impression that seeing a doctor is unnecessary if you only have a few bruises or suffer from a minor headache. Nevertheless, it is important that you still see a doctor—regardless of whether you are in pain or have any apparent damages or regardless if you ever plan on contacting an injury lawyer. The smallest aches or pains could well be a symptom of a much more serious injury.

    Accident victims sometimes go through a period of shock, causing them to feel no pain. However, shock can merely mask injuries that manifest days or weeks after the accident occurs. These include traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and neck injuries. Auto accidents can also result in psychological damages, especially if you witnessed the life of a loved one endangered.

    As far as injuries from car accidents, even if not severe, may not be immediately noticeable. Only a doctor can thoroughly examine and assess your condition, and determine the best course of treatment to help you recover fully. Whether with or without any apparent issues, a doctor will also be able to enumerate symptoms or red flags you may need to watch out for.

    Seeing a doctor after an auto accident is also critical if you have any plans of filing a claim. Though filing a claim against the other driver may be the last thing on your mind at this point, failing to see a doctor after your accident could harm any chance of winning your claim should you eventually decide to file one. By doing away with a proper medical examination, you are throwing away your chances of proving that any serious physical injury you sustained is actually linked to the auto accident you were involved in, thus jeopardizing your odds of receiving full monetary compensation for the damages sustained.

    Insurance adjusters take many variables into account when assessing a claim’s value, including whether the accident victim sought medical attention within a reasonable period of time. Any delay in medical treatment may give the insurance company reason to believe that your injury was not serious enough or that your injury did not result from the accident, reducing the amount to be paid on your claim or leaving you to pay the full cost of your medical bills.

    If you choose to do away with medical assistance after an accident so you can save time and money, remember that this decision can cost you much more later on.

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