Car accidents can be a terrifying experience. Getting yourself assessed by a medical professional in cases of a serious life-threatening injury is a no-brainer. However, it may be tempting to put off a doctor’s visit if you do not feel your situation is pressing. This is not a good idea. If you injured in a car accident in Florida, obtaining medical care within 14 days is important.
Although there are no strict time limits required for you to seek medical attention in Florida – like everywhere else, seeing a doctor within a specific timeframe after a car accident will determine whether PIP (Personal Injury Protection) will cover your medical bills and the value of your settlement.
Injuries from a car accident do not always manifest right away. It may take some time before the affected individual feels the effect of the collision because the pain sensation could be masked by adrenaline. However, obtaining medical attention within the 14-day time limit in Florida is not only important to beat the time frame, but for your health too.
How Florida’s 14-day Rule Works
Florida law requires that you seek medical coverage under the PIP if you have been injured in a car accident. The PIP covers up to 80% of your medical expenses which could amount up to $10,000. However, you must see a doctor within 14 days so your medical condition can be determined. Hence, if you are injured in a car accident and you do not seek medical care immediately because you think there is no apparent injury, your doctor would not be able to submit your medical bill to your PIP insurer even if you start feeling any effects from the collision on only the 15th day.
Florida’s 14-day rule applies to the initial or primary treatment administered by a medical specialist following a car accident. The law also specifies the only healthcare professionals that are considered for the administration of initial treatment:
- Doctor of Osteopathy
- Medical Doctors
- Emergency Transports
- Walk-in Clinics
Thus, if you receive initial treatment from other medical specialist not listed above during the 14-day timeframe, your insurer would not be required to cover your medical expenses after the car accident. The 14-day limit is great for your health because waiting for long periods after a car accident makes it more difficult to prove that your injury was caused by a car accident. Depending on the level of injury, your insurer may argue that the car accident did not cause your injury even when you seek immediate treatment. Hence, waiting for more days only makes it tougher to get your medical bills covered.
Were you involved in a car accident in Florida? It would be ideal to contact a medical professional immediately so a treatment plan specific for your needs can be developed. Seeing a doctor early can be the difference between a full recovery and any lingering health concerns. Some financial pressure would also be taken off of you if you seek early treatment. Your immediate health is as important as your future – immediate medical attention in Florida gives you a much-needed respite.