What Do I Do If I'm Hurt In A Car Accident?
The worst has happened, you were in a car accident. There’s a ton of things to think about, but how do you handle the issue? Read on, as there are many different things to consider.
Handle The Accident Properly
Chances are that you may be a bit frazzled after the accident takes place, but there are little steps you can make here that may pay off later. In a minor crash, you may be able to take pictures and get details in writing. The reason for this is that your notes may help the court and insurance agencies decide who is responsible. By the same token, you will want to try and put together a diagram of the crash site and even talk to any witnesses to clear up matters. Be sure to get their contact information.
As a note, though, this approach only applies in minor crashes. Anything major will require police involvement, who will likely take care of most of the steps mentioned before themselves, especially if someone was seriously injured or even killed. However, in both cases, you should be sure to not admit fault due to insurance reasons, and by no means leave the scene, even if things seem minor. If someone was to pass away or get severely injured following the crash, you would be liable as a hit-and-run driver.
Care For Your Body
If you are active, being sidelined due to a physical injury is extremely frustrating, but don’t fall into the trap of going too far. Trying to exert yourself could potentially aggravate an injury you already have, creating permanent damage and loss of function. Your doctor will be able to determine what your body is and is not capable of, and help put together a regiment that will get you moving at an appropriate pace. Don’t fall to the other side of the equation as well, though. Rest is essential, but a completely sedentary lifestyle will not promote your recovery. Light exercise is helpful. The key is figuring out how light your body needs to go at first.
Care For Your Mind
Even minor accidents can have an impact on your mental health. Even those with no driving anxiety may feel it afterward. Where issues can spiral out of control is when those feelings don’t go away. According to the experts, 30 percent of car accident survivors have to deal with a “negative psychological response.” This can vary from minor effects to full-blown PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder). The best thing you can do is be sure to keep a regular routine, like a good sleep cycle and proper nutrition. Moderate physical activity is helpful too if you are able, as it releases endorphins which promote feelings of happiness.
Don’t be afraid to seek out a mental health professional if you start seeing regular occurrences of the following symptoms after your accident:
- Sleep loss or sleep disturbances
- Weight fluctuations
- Feelings of loneliness, embarrassment or of being overwhelmed
- Compulsive or obsessive behaviors
- Chronic fatigue or exhaustion
- Social withdrawal
Sometimes, you can’t determine what way your recovery will go. By all means, things may be going fine, only to take a turn. This means costs you can’t anticipate, as well as potential loss of income. As a result, you may find yourself in lead of legal aid. It’s not worth it to try and go it alone in this area, as different situations change legally based on what state you are in. How does this play out?
For example, according to Daniel Noll, a Car accident attorney in Springfield IL, “In Illinois, most drivers have at least $25,000.00 in bodily injury coverage that can be used to cover injuries when a driver causes an accident. Some policies exceed $1,000,000.00. If a driver commits negligence, such as running a stop sign or driving while intoxicated, and hurts another person, bodily injury coverage can be used to reimburse the injured person’s expenses.”
Unfortunately, many insurance companies will not provide bodily injury funds to an injured person until after they have completed medical treatment. This can cause significant problems for an injured person, who may be unable to work after their injuries and therefore have no money to pay for doctor’s appointments.” Each state has its own rules, and it’s important to remember this. Be sure to select a lawyer carefully, and work with them to ensure that you get the best result possible for your health and finances.