After a serious car accident in Iowa, you may get a surge of adrenaline and not be feeling much pain or discomfort. Sometimes injured car accident victims can go hours, days, or even weeks before realizing something is truly wrong.
Realizing You’ve Been Hurt in an Iowa Car Accident
Once you realize that you do have serious injuries from the crash, the most important thing to do is get treatment as soon as you can. You may not have gone to the hospital or seen your doctor immediately after the crash. However, once you realize that you’re injured, you need to schedule appointments with your medical providers.
See your doctors as often as you need to and for as long as you need to until your providers say you are healed, or as healed as you’re going to get.
This is called reaching “maximum medical improvement”, or MMI. Reaching MMI is an important step in your case. After you reach MMI, it’s likely your attorney will begin negotiations to settle your claim.
You do not want to settle your claim before you have reached MMI. If you settle your claim before you’re completely healed, the other side no longer has to pay your medical bills or any other bills related to the crash. This could mean that any future medical treatment comes out of your own pocket.
How the Insurance Company Might Lowball You During a Car Crash Settlement
Because of your delay in seeing a doctor, the other driver’s insurance company may argue that your injuries weren’t a result of the crash at all. To prove that your injuries were a result of the crash and not from a previous unrelated injury, you’ll need a medical expert to review your medical records and testify on your behalf.
An experienced Iowa car accident attorney can order the appropriate medical records and hire the right expert for you. This will leave you time to heal from your injuries and let someone else worry about the next steps.
Obviously, the sooner you treat your injuries, the better. However, you have a little time before your case needs to be settled or a lawsuit needs to be filed.
In Iowa, you have two years from the date of the crash to file a lawsuit or settle your claim. This is known as the statute of limitations.
If you have not reached MMI by the time the statute of limitations passes, you will have to file a lawsuit to make sure you can still receive fair compensation.
Why You Need to Speak with an Iowa Car Accident Attorney
Two years may feel like a lot of time to decide whether to pursue a claim, but time can pass quickly. That’s why we recommend speaking with an experienced Iowa car accident lawyer as soon as possible after your crash.
Even if you believe you’re not seriously hurt, a skilled car crash attorney can give you advice on what next steps to take and what pitfalls to avoid.
RSH Legal offers a free, no-obligation case evaluation to Iowans injured in car accidents. To schedule yours, call 1-800-433-0283 today.