An injury can completely change the way you work and live. Whether you or someone you love was the victim, accidents can bring on enormous emotional, physical, and financial stress. Recovery doesn’t stop at the hospital or doctor’s office. You may be stuck searching for a way to pay your normal bills as well as additional medical expenses, and possibly with little to no income. So what can you do after an injury to ensure that you will get proper compensation?
Seek Medical Assistance as Soon as Possible
This may sound obvious, but some people often try to deal with the injury on their own without seeking professional medical treatment. This is bad for two reasons. First, not seeking treatment could prolong or worsen the effects of the injury, further impacting your health. Second, it doesn’t look good if you try to claim compensation and there has been a delay in you seeing your doctor. Insurers will often use this as an excuse to argue that you are making it up or that you were actually injured in a different way..
The sooner you see a doctor, the better. If the accident wasn’t an immediate emergency situation, make sure you call your general practitioner or local hospital right away. Go in for a visit as soon as they can take you.
It is Best to See your GP
Even if you think you will eventually need treatment by someone other than a doctor, it is best to have your initial visit with your general practitioner or hospital. This is important to establish a record and proves that you took the proper steps to get the right level of treatment as soon as the accident happened. You can also see a Naturopath, Physiotherapist, Chiropractor, massage therapist or other treatment provider, but generally a General Practitioner, Specialist or Hospital is necessary to undertake more detailed assessment of your condition. These records will be obtained by your lawyer or the insurer and will be very valuable information to help your claim.
Make an Accident Report
If your injury was the result of a motor vehicle accident, make sure you report it to the police. This further establishes a record of what happened and provides a resource that can be referenced in court if needed. Sometimes the police may tell you not to worry about reporting it, but you should insist that you want a report noted. If you have any problems, contact a personal injury lawyer and they can help you.
If your injury happened while on the job, make sure you file an incident report with the company’s health and safety officer. If that individual is not available, put the location of injury, date, time, and a short description of what happened in writing as soon as you can, even if just by email to your supervisor.
If you have a camera or smartphone on hand, take photographs of the location of the accident. This provides a visual record that may be needed when arguing your case later. Also make sure you write down the contact information of any witnesses that were in the area at the time of the accident. If they have a business card, take a photo of the card just in case it gets lost while you seek treatment.
Act Fast After Your Injury
Timing is extremely important when you have been injured. Make sure you do everything you can to seek medical treatment and record what happened right after the incident. There are filing time limits for injury compensation claims, so get started right away.
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