Suffering injuries in a car accident that was not your fault can be one of the most stressful and overwhelming experiences a person can have. In addition to the intense pain, temporary or permanent disability, and the possibility of losing wages due to missed time at work, one of the biggest challenges people face after an accident is the massive stack of medical bills.
If you were injured in a car accident, you have the right to file a claim for compensation for your medical expenses and other accident-related losses. Understanding what types of medical expenses you are eligible to claim and the kind of documents you need to gather to support your claim will help you ensure that you have the strongest case possible and that you recover the full and fair compensation you deserve.
The experienced Charleston car accident attorneys of Crantford Meehan have the knowledge and skills necessary to build your claim and negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company. We are unafraid to take your claim to court, if necessary, so we can advocate aggressively for your rights before a judge and jury.
Call us today at (843) 417-0469 or contact us online for a free consultation to determine your legal options.
What Types of Expenses You Can Claim
When filing a car accident claim, you can claim compensation for any expenses relating to the medical treatment you have received to treat your accident-related injuries. This includes:
- Emergency room visits
- Ambulance rides
- Appointments with your primary care physician
- Appointments with specialists
- Diagnostic tests and scans
- Home health care
- Medical equipment such as crutches or braces
- Mental health treatments
- Physical and occupational therapy
- Prescription and over-the-counter drugs
- Transportation and accommodation costs if you need to travel for your treatment
- Household assistance such as cleaning or childcare if your injuries prevent you from performing these tasks
The Importance of Medical Records
After being injured in a car accident, your main priority should be to seek immediate medical attention. This will not only improve the chances that you will recover effectively from your injuries, but it will also help you to ensure that you have the strongest claim possible when it comes to recovering compensation for your medical bills.
When you file an injury claim, it is necessary to share evidence of the harm you have suffered and how your injuries have negatively affected your life. Detailed medical records that go back to the moments immediately after the accident can demonstrate the nature and extent of your injuries and any treatments you have undergone to address them.
Furthermore, the medical records that detail the progression of your injuries up until this point will be a starting point for determining the likely medical bills you will continue to incur in the future because of the accident. This is an important point because you are eligible to claim compensation for future medical expenses in addition to the bills you have already incurred.
Types of Medical Records to Maintain
One of the things that people often find overwhelming as they file a car accident claim is that the medical records they have for treatment of their injuries can often amount to hundreds of pages. While it is important to maintain all these records, there are a number of specific documents you will need to keep close track of. These include:
- Records from emergency medical services, including emergency room visits, ambulance rides, and paramedic treatment
- Diagnostic records linked to your accident-related injuries
- Lab results, test results, and visual imagery of your injuries (MRI, x-rays, etc.)
- Medical letters or reports from your doctor and other medical specialists
- Records of physical or occupational therapy, covering your initial session through the entire period you have received therapy
- Coverage summaries from your health insurance provider
- Bills, invoices, and receipts associated with these documents
Each person’s personal injury claim may require documents that the above list does not cover. If you are unsure, your Charleston personal injury attorney will advise you about the records you need.
How to Obtain These Documents
In general, your doctor’s office and insurance providers should be proactive about making these documents available to you. However, if you find this is not the case, you should ask for any items you need. Rather than asking your doctor directly for the records, you will probably find that it is more effective to request them from their office’s administrative staff.
Keeping Your Documents Organized
Having the documents you need to claim your medical expenses is essential, but so is keeping them organized. While there is no one way to do so, it is important to have a method that makes it easier for you and your attorney to access the records you need when you need them. A few options include:
- A physical filing system in a file cabinet or organizer for your folders
- Taking photographs of your medical paperwork and storing them on a digital device
- Using a smartphone app to keep track of your expenses
- Maintaining a medical journal that can help you remember the various medical and therapeutic appointments you have gone to since the accident
In any of these cases, it is important to remember that your medical information is sensitive. As such, you should be sure to store your physical or digital files in a place that is secure as well as accessible to you.
Contact a Charleston Car Accident Attorney
If you have been injured in a car accident in Charleston, the experienced attorneys at Crantford Meehan are here to help. Our lawyers understand the challenges people must endure after an accident, and we want to do what we can to make things right. Our legal team will put our knowledge and skills to use to secure the full and fair compensation you deserve. Call us today at (843) 417-0469 or contact us online for a free consultation.
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