What to do about a car accident in which I suffered injuries?

I was involved in an accident. The other driver was making an illegal U turn and totalled the truck. I was driving. The truck wasn’t in my name and I wasn’t on the insurance as a driver. Now I am stuck walking and my lower back, shoulder and neck are killing me, along with having headaches. It’s been a week and I haven’t gone to the doctor yet because I have no medical coverage and no car to get there. I am stuck now and in pain. Is there anything that can be done for me to get some kind of settlement? Should I speak with a personal injury attorney? In Burlington County, NJ. 

Asked on September 20, 2011 under Personal Injury, New Jersey

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

It would be advisable to speak with a personal injury attorney.  The personal injury attorney may be able to refer you to a doctor, who will take the case on a lien basis.  This means the doctor is paid out of the settlement of the case.

When you complete your medical treatment and are released by the doctor or are declared by the doctor to be permanent and stationary which means no further improvement is anticipated, obtain your medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of any wage loss.  Your personal injury claim which is filed with the at-fault driver's insurance carrier will consist of the medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering.  Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills.

If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the other driver's insurance carrier, reject the offers and file your lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault driver.  If the case is settled with the other driver's insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled with the other driver's insurance carrier, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence against the other driver prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your righrs forever in the matter.


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