My question involves an injury that occurred in the state of: Texas
I was involved in an accident at the end of January and was not at fault (other person cited and admitted he was at fault).
I went to the ER after the accident and again two days later because the pain worsened...nothing broken but first visit was wrist contusion and cervical strain...second visit was carpal tunnel as a result of the accident...a later mri on wrist showed joint effusion, swelling, and fluid build up
Car repair was 2800, rest of the total so far (medical, rental, lost wages, and prescriptions) is right under $21,000...in physical therapy for 2 months and off work for 2 and a half months
Was sent to physical therapy for right wrist, neck, upper back-right side, right shoulder and arm, I was discharged from physical therapy end of march (which mainly focused on my wrist) but dr. stated I was not completely healed and had issues with my wrist that would take time to heal properly....but after returning to work had pain in my neck/back again...had an mri which indicated straightening of cervical spine and was going to be sent back to physical therapy
but, before i went back to physical therapy, in april, i was in another accident very similar to first...going through an intersection with a green light and other person made a left on a red...again, driver admitted fault and was cited
i went back to the ER, diagnosis was muscle strains, more prescriptions and a referral back to physical therapy (though i was still referred back for previous accident)...dr. says i should be released end of may...pain is now upper back (left and right), both shoulders and near the collarbone, middle back and neck. I don't have all the bills yet, but I'm guessing maybe around 10,000 for everything (car repair, rental, medical, prescriptions, lost wages)
I have a newer car (bought in october 2010) car only has 4000 miles on it because of how long it's been in the shop for repairs (had a not at fault accident a week after getting the car and then another not at fault accident mid january...no injuries)...both times damages were around $2800 each for the last two accidents..I do not have a lawyer and have no current plans to get one
My questions are:
1) Can I claim diminished value from both accidents? Damage was basically to the same area but am considering trading the car in and I will have to tell them it's been in four accidents
2) For medical bills...will the insurance company pay them directly or do they include the money in the settlement to me and i pay them?
3) Does anyone have an estimate as to what pain and suffering might be? Just a ball park figure maybe from previous (similar experience)...After second ER visit (before MRI's or physical therapy referral) I was offered 750...I have no idea how much is fair...i've been in other accidents but this is the first time i was injured and had to get treatment
4) Is there a specific way the insurance companies will determine how much they each pay? Since I was referred back to physical therapy for first accident but was involved in second accident (which also had me referred to physical therapy for) before i actually had a chance to return to physical therapy for the first...I'm hoping I don't have to fight both insurance companies to pay the medical bills since they do overlap