Car Accident Back Injury Claims
Car accident injury claims can be handled in a few different ways, depending on who was at fault for the accident and the state where you live. When you have suffered a back injury as a result of a car accident, you may be experiencing discomfort and pain and you may even have lifelong back problems depending on the nature of your injury. You may need surgery, chiropractic care or other types of medical treatments and you may be unable to work or limited in what you can do. If this happens to you, what should you do to recover compensation for your car accident?
Making Car Accident Injury Claims
Your ability to recover compensation for a back injury resulting from a car accident depends on several factors:
- Do you live in a fault state or a no fault state? If you live in a no fault state, then you have to make all car accident injury claims with your own insurer under the personal injury protection (PIP) coverage you were required to buy when you bought insurance, unless your injuries are defined as "serious" under the law. This means you can't sue unless the injuries are "serious" and you're limited to recovering only money for medical bills and lost wages- no pain and suffering damages are allowed. There are times when a back injury claim can be considered "serious," but the rules vary by state. Most no fault states won't let you sue unless the injury has caused you permanent damage or disability or the cost of treatment for the injury has exceeded a certain monetary threshold. If, on the other hand, you live in a fault state, you may be able to sue for additional damages for any back injury.
- Who was at fault for the accident? If you were at fault, then you may not be able to recover in a fault or tort state, unless you bought optional added protection in your insurance policy to cover medical bills. However, if the other driver was at fault and you are allowed to sue (either because you live in a tort state or because the injuries were serious) then the jury can award you damages for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and even emotional distress.
Clearly, with all the different rules and stipulations for recovery, there's no one simple answer as to how to make car accident claims for back injury compensation. This is why it is important to talk to a lawyer after a car accident so your lawyer can explain your legal rights to you and help you recover damages resulting from the accident.