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How Long Do You Have to Go to a Doctor After a Car Accident Caused by an Obstructed Sign?

Posted March 10, 2020 in Personal Injury Blog

Auto Accident Lawyer

When an intersection is controlled by a stop sign or traffic light, intersection accidents are usually caused by a driver’s failure to obey the sign or signal. But what if the sign is covered by a tree branch? While the driver who runs the sign may still be at fault, most states recognize that the government might also be responsible, either wholly or partially, for the accident.

Most stop signs are erected by local governments — towns, cities, and counties. The government that erects the sign ordinarily has a duty to maintain it. If the sign becomes obstructed by a tree branch or an overgrown bush, the government should remove the obstruction. When its failure to do so contributes to an accident, a car accident lawyer can often hold the local government accountable for its carelessness.

A successful claim depends not just on proof that the government failed to remove the obstruction, but on evidence that a driver or passenger suffered harm because of the resulting accident. Lawyers usually prove harm by relying on medical records. Visiting a doctor immediately after an accident is therefore vital to proof of the injury victim’s claim.

Time Limit for Seeing a Doctor After a Car Accident Caused by an Obstructed Sign

No state sets a specific time limit for seeing a doctor after a car accident. States do set important time limits for filing lawsuits. When the claim is made against a local government, most states have also enacted time limits for giving the government notice that a claim might be filed.

The deadline for filing a “notice of claim” may be quite short. Consulting an auto accident lawyer right away will help injury victims protect their right to make a claim. Missing a deadline might make it impossible to bring a successful claim for compensation.

To prepare a notice of claim, an accident victim’s attorney will want to understand the nature of the injuries the victim has suffered. Seeing a doctor right away gives the attorney an opportunity to request and review medical records before preparing a notice of claim.

Reasons to See a Doctor Promptly After a Car Accident Caused by an Obstructed Sign

It isn’t necessary that all treatment be completed before filing a notice of claim. To maximize injury compensation, however, it important to do two things. First, see a doctor as soon as possible after the accident occurs. Second, obtain any additional treatment the doctor recommends.

Accident victims who do not see a doctor promptly make it possible for the government to claim that their injuries were not caused by the car accident. The more time that passes, the more likely it will be that a claim will be denied for lack of proof that belated treatment was associated with the car crash.

Accident victims who do not follow through on treatment recommendations also jeopardize full payment of their claims. Victims might not want to incur uninsured expenses by following a doctor’s advice. They might not want to take time away from work to keep medical appointments. They might not want to engage in physical therapy because sessions can be time consuming and painful.

Healing is delayed when accident victims do not obtain the care they need. Serious injuries that might have healed can become permanent if they are not treated. The government will blame the continuing symptoms of an injury on the victim if the victim does not obtain necessary treatment.

The government may also argue that the victim did not obtain further treatment because the injury had healed. For the sake of their health and to prove that their injury symptoms are both ongoing and accident-related, car occupants who are injured because of an obstructed sign should follow through on all treatment recommended by their physicians.

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