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People who have a lawyer for their personal injury claim know there are many forms, notices, and legal processes to comply with. There are also many reports to be obtained, conferences to attend and discussions to be had. Things can take a little time. Once injuries have stabilised though, substantial progress can be made to finish your claim.
While we are progressing your claim as quickly as possible, it is essential that you look after yourself during this time.
It is very important to obtain proper treatment for your injuries. Not everyone realises, if you do not continue to get the proper treatment, it may cost you… not only with your health but also in your claim.
Rehabilitation and treatment are an essential part of recovery after suffering a personal injury. Recovery is often a process. It is not something that just happens at the flick of a switch, and this is more so the case if you are suffering ongoing symptoms from your injury.
A common theme we see as personal injury lawyers are clients who ‘tough it out’. While sometimes it is good to be as tough as nails, there are no prizes for grinning and bearing it if you are suffering due to your injury. Seeking the rehabilitation treatment you need is important for several reasons.
Firstly, if you do not seek the treatment you require, you are denying yourself the chance to recover as best you can.
Secondly, failing to obtain all necessary rehabilitation may negatively impact your claim.
Every person who suffers a personal injury, even if does not involve any fault on their part, has an obligation to ‘mitigate their loss.’ This means a person who has been injured must take reasonable steps to avoid further loss and minimise the impact of their injury. Where rehabilitation and treatment are concerned, this means you must take reasonable steps to seek medical treatment to ensure you are recovering and rehabilitating.
If you don’t seek the proper medical attention or refuse certain treatment, this may negatively reflect on your claim and reduce the amount of damages you receive (unless in your situation it is unreasonable to have treatment – for example, if physio is no longer giving you any benefit or improvement, it is okay to stop physio).
Whether you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident, work accident or public liability accident – you are entitled to recover the costs of rehabilitation back in your claim.
Sometimes, in a motor vehicle accident and workers’ compensation claim, insurers may be willing to pay for the cost of your rehabilitation expenses to ensure that you are getting the correct treatment to enable you to return to how you were prior to the accident. Insurers are more likely to pay in the early stages of your claim and/or if you are severely injured.
Insurers have an obligation under the relevant legislation to fund the treatment. And if they are not funding the treatment, we can take steps to enforce this.
If you legitimately need the attention of a GP, specialist, physiotherapist, or medical professional regarding the symptoms of your injury, don’t go without it. Although you may be out of pocket initially, rest assured that you will be entitled to recover these costs and any future treatment costs when your claim is settled. If you are not seeking medical treatment, you will not recover this amount back in your claim.
We do understand how expensive medical treatment can be. We suggest you talk to your GP about subsidised treatment plans where you can receive several free sessions with a physiotherapist or a mental health treatment plan with free sessions with a psychologist/psychiatrist.
Obtaining treatment from the right healthcare professional/specialist is critical.
The right healthcare professional will play a significant role in providing you with ongoing support during the recovery process. Also, the right doctor/healthcare professional may assist in providing medical evidence which can make a positive impact on your claim.
Every personal injury claim is different. Injuries suffered by a particular person are ‘particular’ to them. The same goes for recovery. While one person may recover in 3 months from a soft tissue injury, another may take 12 months to recover and others, may never fully recover.
There is no direct path or time frame to recovery and that is something that everyone making a personal injury claim should be mindful of.
Look after yourself and do not hold off on getting treatment if you need it.
Make sure you are taking the best possible care of yourself. This will assist with your health but also in your personal injury claim.
If you are not sure about how rehabilitation may impact your claim, be sure to ask the question of your trusted personal injury lawyer.
And don’t tough it out. Remember, you don’t get rewarded for being stoic when you have an injury.