10 Mar Soft Tissue Injuries and Florida Car Accidents: What You Need To Know
We often receive phone calls from people who have suffered soft tissue injuries following a Florida car accident, and are wondering if they need an attorney. If you call your insurance company following an accident, they will likely be willing to quickly offer you a small settlement for your soft-tissue injury. You should not assume that simply because you didn’t break any bones, that your injuries aren’t serious.
A soft tissue injury is any injury that causes damage to muscles, ligaments, or tendons. Soft tissue injuries are different than a broken bone in several ways:
- They are less obvious than a bone fracture
- They can have complications long after an accident
- Symptoms may be initially delayed
- They can affect joint and limb use
- They can cause chronic pain, and in some cases, permanent disability.
Following a whiplash accident, you should do two things as soon as possible: (1) seek medical attention; and (2) contact a Florida personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
How a Florida Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help Following a Soft-Tissue Injury
While money is available in a car accident claim, getting it, especially for a soft-tissue injury, is not automatic. If you contact a Florida personal injury lawyer as soon as possible following your accident, they can help you ensure you get the medical care you need and financial compensation you deserve.
Insurance adjusters are trained to ask you questions that they can use to devalue your injury claim. When you report your accident to the insurance company, they may ask you to make a recorded statement on the spot. You are not required to make a recorded statement, and should not. Contacting a lawyer can allow your lawyer to handle all communications with the insurance company, allowing you to focus on healing and recovering.
Common Types of Soft Tissue Injuries Resulting From Florida Car Accidents
The following injuries are frequently seen following central Florida car accidents:
- Back strains and sprains
- Torn ligaments in the knees, shoulders, and ankles
- Contusions (bruises)
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Tennis elbow (Lateral epicondylitis)
- Tenosynovitis (Tendon Sheath Inflammation)
- Myofascial pain (myalgia).
While many patients recover within a few months of a soft-tissue injury, some have chronic and residual pain, stiffness, and headaches. In some cases, injuries can be permanent. You should always give your injuries time to heal before you accept any settlement money. If you accept a personal injury settlement a few days after an accident resulting in a sprain or whiplash injury, you may think the injury will heal up in a few short weeks. However, if six months later, you are still dealing with debilitating pain and unable to work, you will not be able to recover any more compensation.
You can give yourself the best opportunity for a full recovery by seeing a doctor as soon as possible following an accident, and completing all follow-up care. You should not discontinue physical therapy just because you are feeling better. If you do not follow through the recommended care and then ask for significant compensation for your injuries, the insurance company will question why you didn’t get the treatment your healthcare provider recommended.
Florida Car Accident Whiplash Injuries
The most common type of soft tissue injury is a whiplash injury. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, a whiplash injury is a common name for a neck sprain or neck strain that occurs when the neck is damaged by sudden extension and flexion (backward and forward jerking motion of the head). Northwestern University reports that around 4 million Americans suffer whiplash-associated disorders from motor vehicle collisions each year, costing about $30 billion in medical and rehabilitative care. This type of injury is very frequently seen following a rear-end car accident. After a car accident, symptoms of a whiplash injury may be felt immediately after an accident or may be delayed a few days.
Why You Need to Go to The Emergency Room If You Have a Soft Tissue Injury
Your visit to the emergency room is important documentation in your personal injury claim. You should go to the ER right after the accident. Going home to see how you feel in the morning can be a critical mistake, costing you thousands of dollars. The doctors and nurses that you will see will not only provide you medical care, but assess your injuries as well. Later, when medical records are accessed to value your injuries and compensate you in a personal injury claim, this emergency room visit will link the accident to your injuries.
Why You Need a Lawyer If You Have a Soft Tissue Injury
Without a lawyer representing you, insurance companies will take advantage of your trust and lack of experience. They may downplay your injuries based on the facts of the accident, using low speeds and minimal damage to attempt to devalue a claim and pay you as little as possible. However, statistically and historically, soft tissue injuries can occur at low speeds and when vehicles have no structural damage. Do not accept any compensation offer from an insurance company without first talking with an experienced and knowledgeable personal injury attorney.
Contact Sara Jones Law, P.A., for a Free Consultation
At Sara Jones Law, P.A., our central Florida personal injury attorneys offer a free consultation to review your accident, answer your questions, and explain your legal rights. Call us today at (863) 455-4811 to speak with a member of our team about your potential case.