Nothing ruins your day more than being involved in a car accident. Whether it's a parking lot fender bender or a major accident that totals your vehicle, a car accident is a traumatic and annoying experience.
Depending on the type of car accident you're in, you may not immediately notice your injuries. This can be a cause for concern because the injuries and pain may appear to come out of nowhere, weeks or months after your accident. Ensuring your accident and injuries are properly documented and recorded goes a long way to making sure the costs to get better are covered. You didn't cause the accident or the injuries so you shouldn't be on the hook to pay the bills.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident in Florida, you deserve to have a seasoned car accident injury lawyer guiding you through the complex personal injury claims process. Having someone at your side that you trust goes a long way to helping you have the best chance at a complete recovery.
What Is a Chest Contusion
A chest contusion is an injury to the chest which does not break the skin but still causes internal damage to the body. It can cause injuries to blood vessels and other tissues under the skin.
A chest contusion can lead to more serious injuries including a collection of blood forming beneath the skin. This is called hematoma. In addition, there are many vital organs in the chest region which must also be considered in the event of injury.
Common Causes of Chest Contusions
While there are many different types of causes of chest contusions, there are some which are more common to car accidents. Some of these causes are actually from safety equipment that doesn't work correctly or which causes you additional injuries.
Car companies design seat belts to keep you safe in a vehicle. By their very design, seat belts tighten against your body when your car brakes hard or comes to a sudden stop. This is supposed to happen so that you stay in your seat and are not thrown about around the car or ejected from the car. However, this also means that the seat belt will tighten itself to your body very quickly, and this can cause injury.
There is a proper distance you are supposed to sit away from the steering wheel while driving your car. If you sit too close to the steering wheel, you risk injury. If you are involved in an accident, the impact may force your body forward and abruptly hit the steering wheel. Your car's rigid steering wheel can easily damage your body.
When you're involved in a car accident, flying debris is a serious concern. Whether glass from a window or other debris from pieces of the car, debris flying around can strike you and cause serious injuries. In fact, many accidents cause such force that flying debris can actually become lodged into a victim's chest.
Just like seat belts, airbags are installed in all modern vehicles as a safety measure to prevent death and other serious injuries. But airbags don't always work as intended. Sometimes, airbags are defective. A defect can cause the airbag to inflate when there is no accident. Defects can also cause debris to fly around the car and cause you additional injury. Airbags also deploy with great force. Because they must inflate nearly instantly to protect you from the force of the crash, they must inflate rapidly, creating their own force of deployment. This rapid and forceful deployment can cause additional injuries.
Car Accident Causes
The causes of car accidents vary greatly. Common car accident causes include:
- Distracted driving - Whether it's a text or a screaming child, distraction is one of the most common causes of car accidents. The worst part is, distracted driving is preventable. It simply requires the driver to pay attention to the act of driving.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol - This is a common cause of car accidents. Many people get behind the wheel after having too much to drink. What they do not realize is that their reaction time is greatly hindered by the alcohol they've consumed, often resulting in an accident.
- Reckless driving - Many drivers want to get where they're going as quickly as possible. They speed and weave in and out of traffic. They have no regard for the safety of others. Eventually, this type of driving causes accidents.
- Rear-end collision - These accidents are generally at play with distracted driving. Many times, someone will look at their phone and not realize the car in front of them is slowing down and run into the back of them.
No matter the reason for your car accident, you didn't cause it, and you shouldn't bear any responsibility for the cost to get better. That's why it's vitally important for you to use the services of a seasoned personal injury lawyer who can aggressively fight to protect your rights and get you the compensation you need to get better.
What to Do After Your Accident
What you do immediately following your accident is very important, both for your safety and for the preservation of evidence. Immediately following your accident, take these steps:
- Call 911 - The first step is to make sure you're okay. No matter the type of accident you were in, even a small fender bender can cause injuries. You need to make sure you don't have any life threatening or other serious injuries. Getting seen by a medical professional as soon as possible after your accident helps to make sure your injuries are attended to immediately. This also serves the purpose of having the police create an objective report describing your accident. While the police may not assign fault, they will create a diagram showing the accident scene.
- Take pictures - One of the best ways to preserve evidence in your accident is to take pictures. You may not be able to take pictures yourself because of your injuries, so ask a trusted family member or loved one to take pictures of the accident scene, all of the vehicles involved in the crash, and your injuries. Documenting the accident with pictures is very helpful for your personal injury lawyer to review.
- Get witness contact information - Many times, witnesses won't stick around long enough after an accident to speak with police. If you have their contact information, the police can reach out to them later. In addition, the insurance companies will want to speak with witnesses, too.
- Inform your insurance company - You should inform your insurance company that you were involved in an accident. But do not give them a statement until you've spoken with a trusted personal injury lawyer first. Many people think their insurance company is there to protect them. In reality, insurance companies are in the business of making money and they don't make money if they pay the full value of your claim.
- Keep an injury journal - Write in your journal every day. Describe how your injuries are healing, or not, and describe how you're feeling, including your level of pain. Over time, you'll forget how you felt on any given day and, as you get better, you'll just recall feeling better. But it's important to understand your daily progression through your healing process. This will also give your car accident injury lawyer detailed information about your recovery process.
- Contact a car accident lawyer - You deserve to have experienced personal injury lawyers fighting to protect your rights. That's what car accident attorneys do—because you don't need to worry about how you will pay your bills, they help you get better.
Compensation for Your Injuries
Not only is your chest contusion injury a literal pain, it can keep you out of work temporarily or even permanently. The insurance company knows this and they will offer you a settlement and hope you are enticed by the quick cash. While you need money to pay your medical expenses, this low ball settlement offer likely won't include compensation for future bills. We don't want to see you suffer financial hardship for injuries you didn't cause.
While it's true that most personal injury claims settle out of court, we are fully prepared to take your case all the way to trial if that's what is necessary to get you the full compensation you deserve to get better. We won't settle your case unless it's right for you and your situation. No matter if it's in settlement negotiations or court, we'll fight to get you compensation for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Lost wages
- Loss of companionship
- Medical bills
- Rehabilitation costs
- Future medical costs
Working with us allows you the opportunity to have an experienced team of chest contusion injury lawyers help you determine the full value of your claim and accurately estimate your future costs. You may only see the medical bills sitting on your coffee table. But you must also account for your future costs which could include additional medical procedures. We all know these do not come cheap.
Seek Immediate Medical Care
In Florida, you only have fourteen days to seek medical care after your car accident. That's why it's so important to be seen by a medical professional at the accident scene. Two weeks may seem like a long time but not when life gets in the way. If you wait longer than two weeks to be seen by a doctor, your insurance company could deny your claim.
After seeing a doctor, you should make sure you document your ongoing medical expenses. You didn't cause the accident so you shouldn't be on the hook for the cost associated with your recovery.
Hiring an Attorney Matters
While many people think car accident injury claims aren't complex and they can handle them on their own, they're wrong. Filing paperwork within deadlines, negotiating with insurance companies, and conducting accident investigations are not easy or quick processes. They require a keen understanding of the law. Making sure you speak with an experienced Florida personal injury lawyer is the best way to make sure you don't have to pay out of pocket for your recovery.
Your lawyer can fight to hold the responsible parties at fault for your injuries, negotiate with insurance companies, investigate your accident, review your medical records, all to get you the maximum compensation you deserve. Additionally, we do so on a contingency fee basis: this means we only get paid when you win, and we only take cases we plan on winning.
An experienced legal team will act quickly to identify all potential sources of compensation in your chest contusion car accident injury claim and aggressively pursue the maximum compensation you deserve.
When you're in a car accident, all you want is to get better. And that should be your sole focus. You have enough to worry about focusing on your recovery. Let your car accident lawyer worry about getting your bills paid.
If you have additional questions regarding a chest contusion injury following an auto accident, contacting an experienced personal injury attorney can help you understand your options.
800 N Belcher Rd.
Clearwater, FL 33765
Phone: (727) 451-6900