5 Shocking Costs of Car Accidents That Can Wreck Your Life
When you”re in a serious car accident, your focus will naturally be on the immediate pain and injuries you”re dealing with. Many accident victims will suffer multiple injuries that many not all manifest at once. We wrote an article recently about post-accident depression that can crop up months after your wreck and that you may not immediately associate with the accident. According to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car accidents cost our economy and society more than $875 billion each year. Today we”ll look at this on a personal level as we examine five long-term costs of car accidents that can impact you in ways you may not anticipate and that are critical to consider before accepting a settlement for your accident.
The Hidden Costs of Car Accidents
#1 Long-Term Costs of Emotional Trauma As we mentioned in our recent article, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) occur in one-third or more of motor vehicle accident victims related to the accident itself. But what”s also important to note is that if you”re left with chronic pain after your accident, you”re also at serious risk for depression. This can cost you a one-third increase in sick days which can mean less money in your wallet and overall, costs our economy up to $1.4 billion.
#2 Long-Term Costs of Traumatic Brain Injury Brain injuries are extremely common outcomes of car accidents. 5-10% of head trauma victims experience prolonged problems that can impact your life for years to come and even permanently. Even relatively mild accidents can result in a TBI that can impact your ability to function at home or work. Brain injuries cost our society billions each year and can permanently impair your ability to earn a living. You may be unable to continue in your profession or may be limited to part-time work.
#3 Long-Term Costs of Permanent Physical Injuries If you suffer significant injuries in a car accident that leave you with permanent outcomes that impact your ability to live, work and function, the costs can be great. Physical disabilities after an accident can require accommodations to your home or vehicle or can make you unable to drive at all. This limits your ability to earn a living and can cause you to incur expenses to increase your accessibility in your home. This is on top of the potential for depression that can result from injuries.
#4 Long-Term Financial Costs After an accident, your immediate thoughts will be hospital bills and replacement cost of your vehicle, but there may be long-term (even lifelong) costs. This is determined by your prognosis and this can be difficult to assess right away. Financial considerations should include immediate wages lost from work; medical bills; expenses related to medical treatment (transportation, parking, other costs); vehicle repair or replacement; physical, occupational and rehabilitation services, occupational therapy; future medical costs; reduced ability to casino earn a living; pain and suffering and much, much more.
#5 Long-Term Cost to Quality of Life Taken altogether, physical and emotional trauma, chronic pain and a decreased ability to earn a living greatly reduce your quality of life. If you are left with lasting impacts from your accident, whether it”s physical, emotional or financial, your quality of life will be less than it was before the accident. And while no amount of money can restore your life to what it was before you were injured, it can make a big impact on restoring or preventing an ongoing decline in your quality of life.
How Insurance Companies Take Advantage of Car Accidents
In the days and weeks following your accident, you are vulnerable to shady insurance company tactics because they know you are in pain, are likely medicated and don”t yet understand what the outcome of your injuries will be. If they can get you to accept a low-ball settlement without all the information at hand, it”s a huge win for them, particularly if you will have significant long-term costs that you should have been compensated for after the accident.
Once you sign, it”s too late. This is why it”s critically important that you contact a reputable and experienced car accident attorney as soon as possible after an accident. Once you have an attorney, the insurance company is barred from negotiating with you directly. They will push you to take a settlement, say “it”s the best offer you”ll get” and even advise you that hiring an attorney is a bad idea. These are common tactics to short-change you. Don”t fall for it.
If you were injured in Everett, Seattle or anywhere in the greater Seattle area, contact Rob Kornfeld for an immediate free consultation. Rob can speak to you via phone to assess your circumstances and advise you on how to proceed to protect your interests. Because Rob himself was seriously injured in a car accident that left him with lasting injuries, he understands what the long-term costs can be on your mental health, physical health, quality of life and finances and will fight to get you the best possible settlement for your circumstances.