As Americans struggle with rising medical debt, knowing the true cost of your injury has never been more critical
Medical expenses after a bad car accident can add up fast. Depending on the severity of someone’s injury, the medical treatment required and how much time someone needs to recover, the financial impact of medical care needed to treat a serious injury can quickly add up to thousands and thousands of dollars—or significantly more.
This might explain why medical bills have become the largest source of debt in the United States, according to The New York Times.
Overall, Americans owe collection agencies an estimated $140 billion in medical debt, according to a recent study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), a peer-reviewed medical journal.
“If you think about Americans getting phone calls, letters and knocks on the door from debt collectors, more often than not it’s because of the U.S. health care system,” Neale Mahoney, a health economist at Stanford University and the JAMA article’s lead author, said in an interview with The New York Times.
What kind of expenses can result from a car accident?
Medical expenses associated with treating serious injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident can be extensive. That's because injury victims can suffer many different types of injuries that require different types of medical treatment. Sometimes, people need an X-ray, MRI or CT-Scan in order to determine if they have a traumatic brain injury (TBI), concussion, broken bone, or soft tissue injury. Other times, they might need medical care designed to treat whiplash or other types of serious neck injuries.
But what many people might not realize is medical care associated with a car accident often goes far beyond ambulance fees, overnight hospital expenses, and emergency medical care at Ohio State Emergency Department East Hospital in Columbus or another area hospital. Many times, crash victims require long-term medical care years after their accident.
Long-term medical expenses can include:
- Follow-up doctor’s appointments to monitor someone’s progress while recovering from an accident
- Physical therapy due to mobility issues or reduced range of motion in certain body parts
- Chronic pain management due to muscle inflammation or nerve damage caused by a crash
- Follow-up surgery due to long-term medical conditions caused by an accident, including joint replacement surgery and broken bone repair surgery
- Prescription medications to treat long-term medical conditions associated with the car accident
- In-home medical care due to not being able to cook, clean, or care for themselves due to their injury
These are just some of the long-term medical expenses often associated with motor vehicle accidents. Each crash victim is different and may require different medical treatment at different times in their lives.
How are injury claims calculated?
Many times, people injured in motor vehicle accidents can obtain financial compensation to cover all their damages (accident-related expenses). However, in order to do so, you often have to prove that another driver caused or contributed to your crash. This is especially true in states like Ohio, which has an at-fault insurance system. That means, in most cases, the at-fault driver's car insurance company is responsible for paying expenses that arise from the crash.
What does this mean for you? The bottom line is you should be financially compensated for all past, present, and future expenses associated with your car accident if another driver caused your collision. Medical expenses are often a major part of such compensation. But that’s often just the start when it comes to accidents caused by another driver. You deserve to be paid for all expenses or loss of income due to your motor vehicle accident, including:
- Repairing or replacing your vehicle if it was severely damaged in the accident
- Replacement income if you cannot work while you’re recovering from your injuries
- Lost future income if you cannot return to work in the future due to a permanent disability sustained in your crash
- Pain and suffering (in certain circumstances)
There’s no set dollar amount when it comes to the total financial value of your individual injury claim. The best way to know the total value of your claim is to meet with an experienced attorney as soon as possible.
Attorney Scott Smith can fight for every dollar you deserve
You might think you don’t need a lawyer if another driver clearly caused your accident in Columbus or another community in Ohio. The police and insurance companies will take care of everything, right? Don’t be so sure. The police officer investigating your crash is only concerned with determining how your accident happened, not whether you’re fairly compensated. As for insurance companies, the one representing the at-fault driver will often do everything they can to reduce or deny your claim. That’s because there’s often a lot of money at stake.
We understand the seriousness and the urgency of your case at Smith Law Office. That’s because we have years of experience dealing with a wide range of accident claims in Columbus and throughout Central Ohio. As a result, we can review the details of your case and provide an accurate estimate of how much your accident claim could be worth. We will then work tirelessly to demand the maximum financial compensation you rightfully deserve.
Learn more about how we can help with your potential legal case and contact us to schedule a free consultation right now. Our law firm has two offices conveniently located in Columbus on Horizons Drive and East Gay Street.