Being involved in an accident is never fun – especially if you are not to blame. The pain and suffering seem like they may last forever – and in some instances, they may. But what can be done to help you deal with medical expenses from your injuries that haven’t even happened yet? Can you sue for the risk of future injuries after an accident?
Personal Injury Claims Can’t Be “Left Open”
Unlike Workers’ Compensation claims, personal injury compensation claims cannot be “left open.” What this means is that despite the probability of future medical expenses existing, a personal injury claim cannot just wait until those costs arise before seeking compensation. That’s true, even if the accident that wasn’t your fault. If you want to protect yourself from future medical expenses, you need to prove that future medical costs are probable – as well as how expensive they are likely to be.
How Can You Prove Future Medical Costs?
The problem with future medical costs is that they are, well, in the future. As such, it can be difficult to prove exactly what your future medical needs may be. “Future medical costs” refer to the expenses for medical care that an injured party will require once litigation is complete.
To receive compensation for any potential future medical costs associated with an injury, first, you need to prove that continued medical care will be needed as a result of your injuries. Recovering these costs requires proof of the “reasonable probability” that the injuries sustained will require medical treatment into the future.
Proving the need for future medical costs compensation generally requires testimony from physicians and other health care personnel concerning the nature of your injuries and the care they likely require. This testimony must also include sufficient detail to provide a rough estimate as to what these future costs may be. Damages usually are not awarded if future expenses are purely speculative.
How Are Future Medical Costs Determined?
When calculating any future medical costs which may be expected, your treating doctor will likely calculate the future care based upon the following information:
- Likelihood of the need for future care.
- Description of the extent and type of medical care needed.
- An estimated cost of the projected future care, including how long it may take.
In many cases, the dollar amount an injured party receives will differ from the estimated amount. This is because the amount will be reduced to what is known as a “present value”, or the current value of monies which are expected to be available into the future.
Were You Injured in an Accident? Call DeZao Law Today
If you are injured, you need to seek expert legal guidance right away. Because of the sensitive nature of your claims, make sure you speak with an experienced New Jersey personal injury attorney today at the Law Offices of James C. DeZao, P.A. Our firm is here to assist you with your case and help you claim the compensation you rightly deserve – including for any future medical costs you may face. Call us today at (855) 432-2489 for a free consultation.