The COVID-19 pandemic brings a lot of uncertainty on all fronts, but those who are involved in a car accident claim may be particularly unsure what the future has in store for them.
The entire process of negotiating a settlement during the COVID-19 can potentially drag on even more because of health concerns that have led adjusters and lawyers to handle claims remotely, using virtual tools of communication. However, apart from the logistics, there’s also the potential of the car accident victim contracting the virus. Will this affect their claim?
Technically, It Shouldn’t
You file a car accident claim to recover damages that have directly resulted from the car accident, such as medical expenses to treat injuries, lost wages, property damage, and other expenses within the pain and suffering category. A COVID-19 diagnosis has nothing to do with the car accident itself, it is simply an event that occurs after the fact.
However, this doesn’t necessarily mean a diagnosis won’t affect your claim at all, as there are a few scenarios that may occur:
- Delayed or postponed car injury treatments
- COVID-19 medication or treatment could make your car accident injuries worse
- Because of self-isolation, you may have to delay the claim even more
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, you either have to self-isolate at home or, if your condition is severe, stay in the hospital to receive treatment. In either case, it likely means that treatment for your car accident injuries will be reduced or even stopped, which in some cases may mean your injuries get worse.
Now, the insurance company has to pay for your medical expenses, but they do not have to pay if your condition gets worse because you failed to address them quickly. Even if your reason to address them may be legitimate, such as a COVID-19 diagnosis, they may argue that you were reckless and did not take proper precautions to protect yourself from contracting the virus.
Additionally, a COVID-19 diagnosis can delay your claim even more, since for a while you will not be able to take part in any proceedings. This can create a lot of financial hardships as two different sets of medical bills start piling on.
What Can You Do?
There are a lot of grey areas when it comes to claims involving a COVID-19 diagnosis because the virus itself is so new, that there are not many established precedents to help lawyers and adjusters guide themselves throughout the proceedings. However, this is not to say you should give up.
If you are the victim of a car accident and have been diagnosed with COVID-19, on of the best decisions you can make is to reach out to an experienced St. Louis auto accident lawyer. With their help, you can ensure this diagnosis does not come in the way of you getting compensated for all the damages the car accident has caused you.
Talk to a lawyer for Free 24/7