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According to the CDC, over 57 million Americans visited a physician’s office to seek treatment for injuries in 2018 alone. While most injuries are minor cuts, bruises, and scrapes, some can be catastrophic.
Besides the physical pain, cost of medication, and the psychological pain that comes with a severe injury, an injured person may need to figure out how to lead a new life. The good news is that knowing what to expect and what to do after a catastrophic injury can help you improve the quality of life you live after an injury.
What is a Catastrophic Injury?
A catastrophic injury is any injury that causes a profound and lasting impact on the victim’s life. It may require extensive medical treatment and long-term care.
Some common types of catastrophic injuries include spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, disfigurements and amputations, and any injury resulting in long-term medical treatments.
What to Do After a Catastrophic Injury
1. Avoid Gaps in Your Medical Treatment
Your initial contact with medical help will be at the scene of the accident, followed by a visit to the ER. In the ER, the treating doctor will recommend a treatment regime. Following through with the regime can significantly improve your recovery journey and minimize the cost of medical treatment.
Unfortunately, many accident victims fail to follow through with their treatment regime when they start getting better, creating medical treatment gaps. The sad bit is that the opposing side will carefully look for gaps in your medical treatment, which they can then use as the basis to lower the value of your claim.
Also, the gaps can result in the deterioration of your condition, causing you even more pain and suffering.
2. Contact a Catastrophic Injury Attorney
The damages resulting from catastrophic injuries can be extremely high, and as a result, the value of a claim can involve a large payout. Considering the at-fault party or their insurer may contest your settlement request, you may not recover much if you pursue a catastrophic injury claim on your own.
Unfortunately, getting a lesser settlement after an injury will mean contending with a less than ideal quality of life. Therefore, you will need a catastrophic injury lawyer or a legal team that assists you in fighting for what you rightfully deserve.
3. Do Not Be in a Hurry to Settle
A catastrophic injury can throw your life in disarray in a moment which can cause desperation. Unfortunately, the opposing side can use your desperation against you and offer to settle early. The problem with settling too soon is that you may never know the full extent of your injuries.
By settling early, you will also be signing off your right to file further claims, meaning you may have to foot some bills from out-of-pocket money if your payout money can’t cover your damages.
The best approach is to allow your attorney to do all the negotiations for you. However, be sure not to let the statute of limitations expire before you file your catastrophic injury lawsuit.
4. Be Careful With Social Media
While sharing your story on social media may seem harmless, it could adversely affect your case if you intend to file for damages for your injuries. If you must use social media, ensure you don’t include any information about how you feel or details of your injuries.
If your case goes to trial, the other side’s attorney may search your social media handles to find the information they could use against you in court. Sometimes even a seemingly harmless post can hurt your case.
Therefore, before posting anything, it is best to seek advice from your attorney to ensure you don’t hurt your case.