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Can You Sue for a Concussion After a Car Accident in Florida?

on  Car Accidents

Cars have safety features like airbags and headrests that are specifically targeted at protecting your head and neck.  Still, concussions and other head injuries are common after car accidents – and are even more common in motorcycle accidents or bicycle crashes.  Under Florida’s no-fault car accident rules, it may be difficult to take some cases to court, but Miami car accident lawyer Prosper Shaked explains how you may be able to file a lawsuit for a concussion after a car crash.  If you or a loved one suffered a concussion in a South Florida car accident, call Prosper Shaked Accident Injury Attorneys PA today to schedule a free consultation on your car accident claim.

Common Symptoms of Car Accident Concussions

If you are ever involved in a car accident, it is important to recognize the signs and symptoms of a concussion to ensure that you get the proper medical care you need.  If you suffered a head injury in a car accident, you should always get yourself checked by an EMT at the scene and accept any additional care they recommend, even if that means spending the rest of your day in the hospital.  Concussions are a mild form of traumatic brain injury, and all brain injuries should always be treated with the utmost care.

If you suffered a concussion in a car accident, some of the symptoms are easily identifiable.  First, the injury may come with pain in your head as well as dizziness, nausea, tiredness, and other effects you might suspect from a strong blow to the head.  Second, concussion victims often lose consciousness.  This might not be something you remember or realize, and you may need assistance understanding this and other post concussive symptoms.

If your symptoms seem severe or you are having trouble thinking or remembering, your injury might be more severe.  Especially severe concussions may actually be traumatic brain injury (TBI).  This is a serious condition that could have long-term effects including problems with motor function, walking, cognition, memory, loss of senses, personality changes, mood swings, and trouble recognizing familiar people or objects.  This could be a life-changing injury that needs ongoing medical care and requires months or years of rehabilitation.

Even if your injury is relatively mild, still seek medical treatment.  Your medical records can provide excellent evidence of your injury and help you prove your case in court.

Suing for a Concussion after a Florida Car Crash

Florida’s car accident laws restrict when you can file a lawsuit for injuries.  These “no-fault” rules ensure that everyone’s car insurance can pay for some physical injuries without requiring the drivers to prove who was at fault for the crash.  This helps drive down the number of car accident lawsuits by providing at least $10,000 in “personal injury protection” (PIP) for injured drivers and occupants.  However, these benefits are not always enough, especially when dealing with a brain injury.

Many serious concussion cases require medical imaging like MRIs or CAT scans, which can become expensive.  More specifically, diffusion-tensor imaging (DTI), a newer type of MRI, can be helpful in identifying microstructural changes in the brain that cannot be seen with regular MRIs or CAT scans.  If the injury is more severe and requires a craniectomy to relieve pressure, prolonged rehabilitation, or extensive home-nursing care, your injuries could easily exceed the $10,000 personal injury protection threshold.

Alternatively, injuries that are considered “permanent” in nature can automatically entitle you to sue for pain and suffering.  Even if the injuries are worth less than $10,000, you can still go to court if the injuries affect bodily functions on an ongoing basis.  While mild concussions may not cause permanent harm, repeat concussions or especially severe head trauma can certainly cause permanent damage.

Alternatively, disfiguring scars can also qualify as “permanent” injuries.  Head trauma can often result in severe bleeding and scarring since the skin on your scalp and head is usually thinner and more prone to excessive bleeding.  If your head injury included severe scars and cuts, you could be entitled to take your case to court.

Damages for a Concussion in a Car Accident Lawsuit

Florida law entitles injury victims to certain areas of damages once they win their court case.  These damages include three primary areas most people are concerned about: medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Most concussions require some sort of medical testing to confirm the extent of the injury and ensure there is no internal bleeding.  These tests can be expensive, even for more minor concussions.  A lawsuit can help you recover the costs of these and other medical expenses.  If you had to miss work because of your injury, you might be missing wages and other compensation from those missed days.  A lawsuit can replace those lost wages in full.  Lastly, concussions are often painful and incredibly uncomfortable.  A lawsuit can entitle you to extensive damages for pain and suffering.  Personal Injury Protection coverage does not cover pain and suffering damages, so it is vital to talk to an attorney about what your case could be worth before accepting any settlements.

Miami Car Crash Lawyer Offering Free Consultations

If you or a loved one suffered a concussion in a car accident, talk to an attorney right away.  Attorney Prosper Shaked helps concussion victims get compensation they need for their medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering by filing a lawsuit in a Florida court.  For a free consultation on what your case is worth and what our legal services can do for you, contact the Prosper Shaked today at (305) 694-2676.