An accident case can be more than just broken bones and stiffness and soreness. How do I know this? In part because I have handled about 10,000 Accident cases in my career. However, that’s not the only reason. I graduated pre-med/pre law from USC, but that’s not the reason either. I credit my awareness of what an accident victim goes through to the basic facts that I was rear ended and in an accident myself.
I experienced first-hand, what my clients go through. Quite honestly I don’t think any lawyer should handle an accident case if they have not been a victim themselves. Most lawyers learn in a soft tissue case that their client is stiff and sore and that is it. We all go to doctors and forget to tell them many of the following that increases the value of the case.
Feelings of dizziness
Feeling frustrated or impatient
Taking longer to think
Withdrawing or making excuses
Small events get on your nerves
Nervousness when driving
Episodes of rapid heartbeat/breathing
Nightmares of the accident
Hot flashes, never before experienced
Nightmares of danger, or odor of gasoline
Guilty family member was injured
Function problems with work or studies
Having to repeat things
Problems normal tasks and taking longer to do them
Frustrated with injury impairment
Scared of losing your job because you cannot perform
I tell my clients: We are all like a glass almost filled to the top with water. Now after the accident additional liquid is poured into the glass from the stress of pain, getting car out of a tow yard and to a body shop, getting a rental car, doctor appointments, physical therapy appointments, fighting traffic to get to the doctor on time, waiting to see the doctor etc.
I experienced all of this, and on several occasions waited up to 3 hours to see the doctor. Arriving home my wife said, “Hi honey, did you have a good day?” I responded “What the heck do you mean did I have a nice day?” How could I have a good day? I had to fight traffic to get to the doctor, PT. and waited to get into the doctor. I had to fight traffic to get home etc.
All of these things were the additional liquid that spilled into my glass causing the liquid to spill over. However it wasn’t liquid it was my having “a moment”.
I felt terrible that I had treated my wife like that. It was not me. It was the liquid/stress spilling over and my taking it out on my wife. We also take it out on our kids too, because we can get away with it.
We would not treat our boss or co-workers like that. But we feel comfortable doing that with family. This happens often but few clients ever mention this. In my opinion the most important part of a lawyers job, on an accident case, is to elicit all the symptoms and to get the client to the right provider for each.
Suggestions for future articles? Contact Dale Gribow (760) 837-7500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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