Filing an Injury Claim for Concussion & Post – Concussion Syndrome After a Car Accident
Concussions and post-concussion syndrome are common injuries in vehicle crashes. You may be compensated for brain injuries if you can show that they were caused by another party’s negligence.
However, claiming compensation for such head injuries is often challenging, especially when dealing with an insurance company. It is best that you have a reliable head njury attorney on your side to help determine the amount you are entitled to and advocate for this amount in the claims process.
Concussion/Post-Concussion Syndrome Symptoms
A concussion is a traumatic brain injury (TBI) that occurs when the head suffers a blow or is shaken back and forth. The jolt to the brain causes chemical changes and sometimes mild cell damage.
Most concussions are mild or barely noticeable, leading people to ignore the injury. Thankfully, mild concussions may go away on their own without medical treatment. However, this TBI can persist in some cases, causing some longer-lasting health issues.
When a concussion is not treated and continues to affect the injured for weeks or months, it is called post-concussion syndrome.
The tricky part about detecting concussions and post-concussion syndrome is that their symptoms are often mistaken for ‘normal’ everyday experiences. Some studies even show that as much as 88 percent of people with concussions do not realize they have this injury.
If you’ve been in a car accident, don’t neglect these signs and symptoms of concussion/post-concussion syndrome:
- Headaches or a feeling of pressure in the head
- Sensitivity to light
- Vision problems
- Hearing problems or ringing in the ear
- Fatigue or sleepiness
- Memory problems
- Sleep disturbances
- Confusion or other cognitive issues
- Irritability, depression, or other significant mood changes.
If you experience several of these symptoms after a car crash, or if any of them persists for days, consult a physician as soon as you can. A doctor’s visit may be vital to your health, and it can also be helpful to your accident insurance claim later on.
What to Expect When Claiming for Concussion/Post-Concussion Syndrome
In terms of auto accidents, California is a fault-based state, meaning the person at fault in your accident is responsible for paying for your injuries. You will typically have to file your claim against their auto insurance carrier if they are insured. If they have inadequate or no insurance, you will need to claim from your own uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
Insurance companies are known to downplay injury claims, and they are especially wary with concussion claims. This is because concussions are difficult to prove as being caused by the accident. Symptoms like headaches and fatigue could be caused by many other things apart from a car crash. Some symptoms may even be blamed on the injured person’s pre-existing conditions from before the accident happened.
Due to confusing symptoms, insurance adjusters may be able to minimize the value of the claim. Sometimes, even car accident survivors themselves may not recognize the true extent of their own injury or are unable to prove it. This has sadly resulted in many injured claimants settling for much less than they deserve.
With these potential challenges, two of the most important things you should do after an accident are:
- Seek medical attention, even if your injury feels minor.
- Talk to a personal injury lawyer before speaking with an insurance company.
Getting examined by a doctor is important because some accident injuries, particularly those related to TBI, do not show symptoms right away. We know now that most people suffering from a concussion do not even know it. Medical examinations should help you and your lawyer get a better idea of the extent of your injury. Test results will also be useful in proving your injury to the insurance company.
Getting an attorney is also crucial if you hope to be compensated for your injury. Your lawyer should determine the damages you are entitled to, and effectively negotiate with the insurer to get you a fair settlement. Further, a good personal injury lawyer can protect you from making statements that damage your claim, signing away your rights, or settling with a low-ball offer.
Concussion / Post-Concussion Syndrome Car Accident Settlement Amount
Injury claimants naturally ask: How much will I get as concussion compensation? What is the average concussion settlement amount?
The average settlement for a closed head injury can be very high. TBI settlements actually vary widely and due to their seriousness tend to be high dollar settlements and verdicts. The following are some factors that affect the settlement amount on a case-to-case basis:
- The severity of the injury
- Medical costs
- Costs of long-term treatment, if any
- Missed income
- Reduced earning potential
- Any permanent impairment
- Whether claimant had any share of fault in the accident.
Know that concussion and post-concussion settlements are not only about monetary expenses.
Overall, there are two types of compensable damages you may be able to claim:
Economic damages — These have a specific dollar amount, such as:
- Hospital bills
- Treatment costs
- Long-term costs
- Lost earnings
- Lost ability to earn.
Non-economic damages — These are less quantifiable losses but may be assigned a dollar value during your claim. Examples are:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental or emotional distress
- Decreased quality of life
- Loss of enjoyment of life.
It’s important to examine all possible damages because, for many accident survivors, a concussion is not just a concussion. It could result in debilitating pains that interfere with the person’s work. It could have a major impact on the person’s finances. It could reduce the person’s ability to enjoy a normal life.
Talk to a personal injury lawyer to evaluate the settlement amount you need and deserve.
Consult With a Top Concussion Injury Attorney in San Diego County
When it comes to head injury claims, the Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers are highly trusted in Southern California. They are led by Attorney Robert Hamparyan, one of San Diego’s top rated injury lawyers and has helped obtain full compensation for numerous Californians who have suffered concussions and other head injuries.
Your consultation with us is free. Call us at (619) 550-1355 today or use our online contact form.
Robert Hamparyan is one of California’s most accomplished personal injury lawyers. Hamparyan Personal Injury Lawyers San Diego was founded so that Robert could bring more of his skill and knowledge to personal injury victims in all types of cases. Robert and his team have dealt with semi truck accidents, wrongful death cases, brain & spine injuries, and many other types of personal injury cases with soaring success.
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