When you’re the victim of someone else’s negligence, you have the right to seek damages. This means pursuing financial compensation for the financial hardship that the accident has caused to you, including getting compensation to cover your medical care costs.
If the incident leaves you disabled in some way, you should know what to do to ensure you’re receiving all of the benefits to which you’re entitled.
Plan for an Injury Claim at the Scene
It’s difficult to know what will happen after an accident, so it’s a good idea to assume you will have to sue for damages. Following that assumption, determine the extent of your injuries and your ability to move. If you can walk, start by assessing the scene and calling for help.
Once you know help is on the way, collect the name and insurance information from the other driver (or business owner if it was a slip and fall accident). You should also collect the names and contact information from any witnesses to the incident. Finally, use your phone to take pictures of the scene of the accident, including any property damage that occurred.
Your Disability Will Affect Your Claim for Damages
Almost as soon as you obtain a medical evaluation, the insurance company for the other party will send an adjuster to offer you a quick cash settlement. They will try to urge you to accept this payment because taking the settlement waives your right to seek additional damages. An experienced personal injury attorney will work with your doctors to determine whether or not you will be left with a permanent disability. If so, your claim will be worth much more, and that’s why insurance companies try to settle fast.
Your claim for damages will include a claim for lost wages that will cover the time you took off work to pursue medical treatment. If you were left disabled and unable to return to work, you can also claim damages for your loss of employment as a result of the disability. If you’ll need to train for a new type of career path, you may also be able to seek damages to cover educational costs.
Your lawyer will also seek damages to cover the costs for your future need for medical treatment, physical therapy, and psychological therapy. To learn more about the types of damages you can seek, refer to this source: https://loncarassociates.com/practiceareas/car-accidents/.
You May Qualify for Social Security Disability Benefits
Your eligibility for disability benefit payments from the Social Security Administration will depend on the extent of your damages. In general, you won’t qualify for injuries that will heal within a 12-month period. However, injuries that will take longer to heal or those that won’t heal fully may qualify for disability benefits. This includes broken bones that have healed, but have left you with an inability to function properly.
For instance, if a bone in your leg didn’t heal correctly and you’re unable to walk without assistance, this can qualify you for benefits. In addition to physical injuries, you may be able to obtain disability benefits for cognitive or psychological damages that have resulted from a traumatic brain injury. Your attorney and doctor can help you determine if you qualify for social security disability benefits.
If you have been disabled as the result of another’s negligence, one of the first steps to take is to consult a lawyer. The initial consultation you schedule with a personal injury attorney will usually be free of charge and will help you understand more about your situation. If you do decide to hire the attorney, you usually won’t have to worry about paying any upfront fees. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency, which means they won’t get paid unless they obtain a favorable outcome in your case.