The Potential Impact of Delayed Treatment for a Personal Injury

b2ap3_thumbnail_delayed-treatment.jpgWhen you have been injured in an auto accident, a slip and fall, or any other type of situation, you will likely seek immediate medical attention for your injuries. You will probably comply with the doctor’s recommendation for care, rehabilitation, and recovery to greatest extent possible.

What happens, though, if you do not seek care immediately? What will delayed treatment do to your personal injury claim?

Unfortunately, there is no clear answer to these questions. As with many issues under the law, the precise effect of delaying medical care for a personal injury depends on a number of factors, including the particular judge or jury assigned to your case. A qualified personal injury attorney can help you more clearly understand the details but there are a few general things that of which you should be aware.

Delayed Treatment Can Look Damaging

Failing to seek medical care quickly, for whatever reason, can create the impression that your injuries were not particularly serious. This can be especially true of soft tissue injuries, as there is not often a medical reason to delay treatment of such issues. In addition, quantifying the impact of your injuries can be challenging if their nature and extent were not established quickly. If there was a delay in your treatment, you and your attorney may face an uphill battle in demonstrating your reasons.

Possible Reasons for Delayed Treatment

While some cases of delayed treatment may be medically justified, there is often a much simpler explanation: many accident victims cannot afford care. After sustaining your injuries, you may have given little thought to the idea that someone else might be financially responsible for your treatment. If you did consider it, you may not have had the financial means to pay for the care upfront and wait for reimbursement.

In 2012, an Illinois appellate court decided that the inability to pay for care may be presented as a valid reason for delayed treatment. Claimants were, as a result, offered some protection from the common defense argument, “if you were hurt so badly, you should have pursued medical treatment.”

If you have been injured in any type of accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney in DuPage County. We can help you review your situation, examine the potential impact of delayed treatment, and work with you to get the compensation you need to put your life back together. Call 630-920-8855 today to schedule a complimentary initial consultation.

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