Can you still seek medical attention and then reimbursement after 5 months from an auto insurer?

Asked on November 13, 2012 under Personal Injury, Texas


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

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You can still seek medical treatment and file a personal injury claim with the auto insurance carrier.  Although auto accident injuries do not always manifest themselves immediately after an accident, the insurance carrier might conclude that you were not seriously injured if you haven't had any medical treatment until five months after the accident.  This may result in a smaller settlement when you complete your medical treatment.

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 having reached a point in your treatment where no further improvement is anticipated, obtain your medical bills, medical reports and documentation of any wage loss.  Your personal injury claim filed with the auto insurance carrier should include these items.  Compensation for the medical bills 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, which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.

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

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You can continue to file a claim for a personal injury as long as you are still within the statute of limitations for filing a claim and you have not already settled the claim.  Five months is still well within the statute of limitations, so yes, you could seek reimbursement from the auto insurer. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.