Consult a personal injury attorney ASAP to guide you through these difficult times and resolve your claim and seek medical care if need be as your health should be your first priority. Best of luck.
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The fact that you have not sought treatment is not helpful to you, medically or legally. You should consult with a PI attorney ASAP and get treatment as needed. Without legal representation, you will probably get minimal support from any insurance company at this point.
You need a magician rather than a lawyer. A gap if over a year will be fought by every carrier known to man. Facts are fact and you can't undo these decisions. Perhaps use your med pay to pay for medical and at least talk to a few attorneys to see if anyone of us can help you.
Stephen L. Hoffman
Law Office of Stephen L. Hoffman LLC
This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.
1. NO payment is ever made before settlement, even if the driver admits fault
2. The ONLY way you recover more than nuisance value here is if the ER took an MRI of your back or neck which disclosed a disc injury.
3. ALWAYS see an attorney as the first person you consult after your doctor when you are in an accident.
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As my colleagues have suggested you should consult a local personal injury attorney. A 1 1/2 year gap is going to be a real challenge to say the least - Unless there is something contained in the emergency visit records or in the medical notes of your follow up visit(s) that illustrates a serious potential medical problem it is going to be extremely difficult to obtain an attorney on a contingency basis (since an attorney would have to be willing to spend his/her time & money) But give it a try - what have you got to lose
This is not intended to be legal advise or as legal representation. I am a California personal injury attorney . Be aware that every state has its own statute of limitations; and statutes & case laws that govern the handling of these matters.
This may or may not be as serious an impediment to a fair recovery, as has been indicated here. I have run into this problem many times over the years. Sometimes it has been a factor sometimes not. More likely the amount of a settlement or the amount you receive at a trial will be dictated by the usual variables, including your likablility and believability. It will also be affected by what you have been doing for the past year in terms of physical activity both at your job and at home. If you have witnesses to support the fact that you have scaled down your activities that would be a plus for you. If you have been lifting heavy object or playing rough sports that will hurt. You can't be afraid to get treatment. It doesn't hurt to get a re-evaluation of your injury. The decision as to whether or not you want to incur the cost of PT, Chiro or other modality is up to you.
The year-long gap is going to present an issue that would be best handled by an attorney, but it will be an issue regardless. You are also coming up on the statute of limitations for doing anything. I suggest you move promptly.
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Contact a local area personal injury attorney to handle this for you. Most personal injury attorneys provide a free initial consultation. Sorry you got hurt. Best of luck.
Mr. Crosner is licensed to practice law in California and has been practicing law in California since 1978. The response herein is general legal and business analysis.. It is not intended nor construed to be "legal advice" but rather it is analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here.
The year long gap does create problems but they are not insurmountable. We recovered a jury verdict of over $800,000 in a similar case where the plaintiff resumed treatment. An analysis has to be made of the injury that existed at the time of the accident compared to the injury that exists presently to see if it can logically be linked. Your medical records would need to be reviewed.
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