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Should I go to the emergency room after the accident?

Yes, you should always get checked out by a doctor!


Should I go to the emergency room? This question is often asked. The answer is - always!

Treatment at the accident scene will not reveal any broken bones (small fractures).

You need to go to the closest emergency room and do a check up, take x-rays of your neck and shoulders (and any other part of your body that hurts).

Having a broken bone and neglecting to take care of it as soon as possible can be a costly mistake.
You should always go to the emergency room, even if the accident is minor.

What you should not do is drive there. Call one of your relatives or someone to drive you to the closest emergency room, or go in an ambulance.

Going to the emergency room shows that you are concerned about your health. It will also show that there is a valid and legitimate claim.

You should go to the emergency room as soon as you can.

Do not allow for long gaps of time (you must go the same day) before you go to the ER.

For example, I had a claim once where the client was hurt. She was claiming a severe lower back and neck pain. She reported in her recorded statement that she drove from the scene to go to the emergency room.


The accident happened at 3:00PM, but she did not make it to the emergency room until 8:30 PM.

I estimated that from the scene to the emergency room there was only about five miles.

Even allowing for one hour waiting for the police, bad traffic, and having a long wait at the emergency room, I could not figure out why it took her more than 4 hours to be seen by a doctor.

When I asked her why it took so long to be seen by a doctor, she explained that she had to stop to meet her friend to go out for pizza.

After that, she dropped off her friend and went to the emergency room. Taking her claim seriously was a challenge after that. She did not get a good settlement. 

The adjuster (in this case me) will think that the injury was not that bad. After all, she went out for pizza!

This does not mean she was not severely injured (she was indeed), but she had a difficult time showing that it was very painful, and that she did not start feeling pain until later.

One thing I strongly suggest is to never drive yourself to the emergency room.

This is critical.

You might be involved in another accident because your judgment is now impaired. It also shows that you are perfectly fine to operate a motor vehicle.


In addition, it shows that your vehicle is in a good enough condition to drive which could become an issue if you require a rental car.

Always watch what you say and review everything you write down. Insurance adjusters will have access to everything you or your doctor writes. They will be looking for any signs of preexisting injuries, or any sign to show that the injury was not that painful.

Your doctor will be a very nice person. She will be asking you very nicely what happened, how it happened, and how and where you are injured.

She is not looking out for the insurance company, but, she will write everything you say, believe me. Here, you must tell them everything that you think might be wrong with you.

Once this information becomes part of the record, it will be nearly impossible to correct a report that is incomplete or inaccurate. I have never seen an emergency room physician change her original report.

Insurance adjusters will hang on to this information and this is what will set the tone for the evaluation of your injury.

You MUST ask for a Release from Work Form. Many emergency room doctors will give you one to three days depending on the symptoms and the severity of the accident.

The reason why I bring this up is because you will not feel the pain until a day or two after the accident. When the pain comes, you will feel like a train ran you over.


It will be too late to go back and ask for this release. If you have this release, then your adjuster will see your injury as serious, and your employer will give you the time off.

The adjuster will pay for the days you did not work without much of a problem.

The issue is when you take time from work without a doctor’s note.

The adjuster will fight you to pay less for your day of work, and sometimes will decline payment for all loss wages.

It is very important that you remember to ask for the release from work. It is easy to forget. There are way too many things on your mind to recall this.

If you ask for this, it shows that you are injured - injured enough to know that you cannot go to work the days immediately following the accident.

The Accident Scene Overview

1. Beat your speeding ticket eBook

2. Do I get out of the car?
3. Do I move the car after the crash?
4. Do I have to call the police after an accident?
5. What to do while waiting for the police!

6. What to do when the police gets there?
7. What to do if the paramedics come to the scene of the accident

8. Should I go in the ambulance from the vehicle accident scene?
9. Should I go to the emergency room after an accident?
10. Do I have to report the claim?

11. Traffic ticket eBook

Driving Tips

1. Driving Tips (1 to 5)
2. Driving Tips (6 to 10)
3. Driving Tips (11 to 15)
4. Winter Driving Tips for your car
5. Winter Driver Tips for the driver
6. Winter Car Accidents
7. Snow Tires Regulation
8. Traffic Ticket eBook
9. Beat your Speeding Ticket

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