Car accident 2010, Is It Too Late For Treatment?

by Brenda H.
(Fort Loudon, PA USA)

I was in a car accident in august 2010. I had severe whiplash to my neck. I did go to the hospital and followed up with my family doctor. The question is I still have pain in my neck but I have not been treated since 2010 due to the fact I had other health issues. At this time, I would like to begin treatment on my neck again, do I need to have a re-check of my neck injury or just get approval from the Dr. due to a long gap of not getting treatment. Should I get an accident lawyer?

Thank you,
Brenda H.

Hi Brenda, Michelle here...

Well yours is actually a common problem so it’s a great question to address here. Many people initially are seen for their accident, then need to take a break from treatment for all sorts of valid reasons, only to need to return back to treatment in the future.

I unfortunately don’t quite have enough information to make a good determination, but I will do my best to give you some things to think about.

First, you have to determine if your car accident claim is still open. I am assuming you were not at fault, and therefore there is another at fault insurance company responsible for your medical care. Every state has limits on how long they allow a claim to stay open once a person has been in a car accident. You can check your state here: State by state information

So, if your claim is still open, then you should see a medical doctor who can document that your neck pain is still from the car accident. This may be a bit of an uphill battle with the insurance company to get them to pay for injury care this far out from the accident. The way to get them to do this is for a medical doctor to document that the current pain is a direct result of the accident.

Yes, I think you are going to need an attorney. Most insurance companies will not take care of medical care this long from an accident date without some serious pressure from you, your doctor and likely from your attorney. This does not mean in any way that your pain is not related to the accident. It just means the insurance company is going to fight your treatment. From their point of view, you couldn’t have been that injured if you didn’t need treatment until almost 2 years later.

If your claim is closed and you can’t get it reopened, then you will use your health insurance to seek treatment. Your health insurance company will ask you likely if there is anyone else responsible for your care (an at fault insurance company), you will just tell them that the claim is closed, and they will cover the cost of your treatment.

Good luck, hope this helps! M.

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