At James F. O’Rourke, Jr. and Associates we have a simple philosophy about documenting client’s injuries in personal injury cases: we instruct our clients carefully identify and describe their injuries to medical treatment providers; we have them engage in a reasonable course of medical treatment for those injuries. After our clients become medically stationary we pursue payment of the fair value of the client’s claim.
Here are two common situations that insurance companies use to reduce the value of their claims.
Identifying Your Injuries
The first few visits to the doctor after your accident are important. Ideally, if you are injured in an accident you will be careful to tell your doctor about all of your injuries in the first examination, starting with the tip of your head and going down to your toes. Then, the doctor can decide if you are injured and recommend a reasonable medical treatment.
But, people don’t want to be hurt, so often they will not fully describe the extent of their injuries in that first visit. Other times, an injury may seem minor and get worse over time.
If you don’t tell you doctor about your sore shoulder from being restrained by your seatbelt, the doctor isn’t going to assess the possibility of a rotator cuff injury. If you don’t tell the doctor about the headache from striking your airbag, the doctor won’t look for signs of post-concussion syndrome. If you wait to tell your doctor about these symptoms, the insurance company may argue that your injuries are not related to the accident.
Just because an injury isn’t documented perfectly in the first medical examination doesn’t mean that it isn’t related to the accident. At James F. O’Rourke Jr. and Associates we can deal with these kind of issues and obtain a full and fair value for our client’s injuries.
Following Medical Advice
In a perfect world, when you are injured and the doctor recommends physical therapy, you will go to every physical therapy session exactly as scheduled. But, if you miss appointments the insurance company may take it as evidence that you are not hurt.
Ideally, you will make every appointment with your doctor without fail. But people have busy lives. It is not always possible to make every appointment. Insurance companies try to use gaps in treatment to claim that you are not hurt or, at least, not hurt as badly as you may be.
As an Oregon Personal Injury Attorney James F. O’Rourke Jr. can take your case through the claims process and deal with the insurance company attempts to reduce the value of your claim. At the end of your case, we want two things: a healthy client; and payment of a fair value for the claim.