When injured, it will damage your case to delay or avoid complaints of pain. One of the factors that are taken into account is how quickly treatment is sought. If your complaints are legitimate, you owe it to yourself to immediately see a doctor. If injuries are serious in nature, go immediately to the ER or a quick care center.
At an accident scene, most often an officer will ask you if you need to be transfered to a hospital. When in doubt, do the safe thing and be seen immediately.
Be Very Thorough When Reporting Complaints
When seeking medical treatment, doctors want to know everything that you are physically experiencing. However, most of us are not very good at being complete. We tend to only talk about what is hurting us the most. Colossus and other computer programs takes advantage of this human trait. If there are periods of time where only certain complaints are documented, and others are not, the lesser complaints are not given as much weight. This is true especially if the complaints do not appear in the medical records for weeks after a traumatic event.
To illustrate: A person who breaks her arm in a motor vehicle accident may have a serious neck injury, but the pain in the arm is all that is reported for weeks. The insurance programs may evaluate the claim and only include the arm injury in its evaluation and conclude that the neck injury must have occurred sometime later.
Make Sure Medical Providers Separate Injuries
Some medical providers get sloppy when generating medical reports. For example, a medical record may indicate that a patient suffered "back spasms." When in reality, the patient suffered both a cervical (neck) injury, a thoracic (mid-back) and a lumbar (low back) injury. It is very important that the provider indicate the diagnosis properly and list each and every injury separately.
The reason for this is that Colossus and other insurance computer programs will take advantage of combining injuries. Instead of compensating for 3 distinct injuries, the evaluation is only made on one.
Seek an Attorney as Soon as Possible
Far too often, good personal injury lawyers will get a client that wanted to wait and see what would happen after he/she was done treating. It is important to seek advice from competent counsel that can help guide you through a serious injury and what it takes to protect yourself from the tactics of the insurance companies and their computer adjusting programs.
Don't just call the first lawyer you see advertise on TV. Find out if they have real courtroom experience. Find out if they will take your case the distance if needs be. One of the factors that Colossus and other insurance programs factors in is the quality of your lawyer. If the lawyer is one that has demonstrated skill in the courtroom and has great success, the program adjusts the value of the claim accordingly.
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