Tag Archives: Car Wrecks

Me & My New Friends

My Pain in the Neck Team

My Pain in the Neck Team

AT HOME IN HEATH: HEADING INTO THE PERSONAL INJURY BATTLE

So, I had a wreck in January and tried to ignore my stiff neck.  My stiff neck finally led to a chiropractor’s office in February and the chiropractor sent me on to the attorney’s office in March.  I guess I’m ready for anything now.

Injury Clinic of Dallas

I am of the opinion that God’s watching out for me all the time.  Chances are, if I had just showed up at the emergency room and gotten an x-ray the day of the wreck, I’d be getting my treatments someplace else.  I would have never chosen a chiropractor’s office in Richardson on the corner of Arapaho and Custer, but for whatever reason, that’s where God led me and I’m so glad.  All the people at the clinic are wonderful – from the delightful Dr. Bahadori who owns the clinic to Ashley, who answers the phone.  Everyone is pleasant, upbeat and caring.  They have tons of experience to draw upon – and let’s face it my doctor, Dr. Karimi, is not exactly hard to look at.  He actually looks better in person with the kind smile he always has for me.

I’ll be honest with you, I have a lot of other things I’d rather be doing than going to a chiropractor’s office several times a week, but since that’s what I’m going to be doing for a while, then I’m glad this is where I’m going.  I’d love to tell you that I walked in and they were able to fix me right away, but that’s not how this thing works.  I go in.  They work on me and I feel great when I leave, but by the next day the neck is stiffening up and those shooting pains are back in my shoulders.  They say this could take up to a year, but I hope they are wrong.

Hernandez & Browning 

After Bill and I both called around talking to attorneys, we’ll both tell you there’s a lot to like about the firm of Hernandez & Browning, as well as Mr. Browning himself.  A real person answered the phone.  They spoke plain English.  They have answers when you talk to them and they don’t play games.  If someone needs to call you back, they will.  If you have an appointment at 9 AM, they’ll be there.

I don’t like to be conned.  Some of the offices we called would ask a few questions then tell us all the reasons my case was going to be so difficult.  The fact is, the insurance company has already admitted their guy is at fault, because they paid to fix my car.  If it were going to be easy we’d do it ourselves.  As to not running to the emergency room when it happened, well there’s no law that says you have to.  In fact, there’s only a statue of limitations that says you can’t wait over two years.  A matter of weeks is nothing, especially with an injury like mine where the ramifications are not immediately apparent.

When we met with Mr. Browning he was very low key and personable.  He saw our case for what it was and explained things in a way that made sense.  We don’t love being plaintiffs, but apparently the system requires it.  We aren’t thrilled about giving up a third of whatever settlement there is either, but hopefully he’ll make sure the settlement is sufficient and he’ll handle all the nasty bits while making sure my caregivers are paid.

So, I’m successfully launched into the world of personal injury.  Who knows!  By the time you read this I may already be cured, but I’ll let you know.

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What I’ve Learned About Personal Injuries

20160121_110516-1AT HOME IN HEATH: EXPLAIN THE PART ABOUT THE ATTORNEY AGAIN PLEASE!

So last week, I told you about my recent accident.  My neck was stiff, but it was going to get better on it’s own right?  Not right!

Finally the Pros Take Over

So, I called up The Injury Clinic of Dallas, the chiropractor in Richardson who I settled on after the extended game of referrals.  I sat in the waiting room for a while and then went back to an examination room.  On that particular day I was seen by Dr. Karimi.  He asked me a lot of questions and then poked and prodded around on my neck, shoulders, hands and arms.

Then we had the talk – the one where he explained why I needed an attorney.  I knew that wasn’t going to go over well at my house.  You can say an attorney won’t cost me anything all you want to, but if at the end of the day he takes a third of my insurance settlement, then that’s a third of my insurance settlement I won’t see.

Still, I went home and explained it all to Bill and gave him the cards of the attorneys which Injury Clinic of Dallas referred.  Bill did some research, called a few attorneys and then put it on the back burner.

Meanwhile, I needed an x-ray and had a week of treatments scheduled.  There were a few phone calls between the doctor’s office and Bill about the attorney situation, but for the time being we were able to get what I needed without engaging the services of a lawyer.

Then We Got the X-Rays

When I showed up for my second week of treatments I found out what the x-ray showed.  The bones in your neck are supposed to be in a nice “S” curve.  Mine looked as if the bones had been replaced by a ruler.  Not good.  There was also the matter of the nerve damage which hadn’t even been addressed, yet.

I got the attorney lecture again, but this time by Dr. Bahadori herself.  She owns the clinic and on that day she was the one to administer my treatment.  Before she was through with me I was convinced I needed an attorney, but that was not the same as Bill being convinced.

I came home with a new set of cards and gave it another try.  This time Bill had me set up a couple of appointments.  We had the first appointment the next morning.  Of course, the rain was coming down in buckets and the last thing we wanted to do was drive over to an attorney’s office, but we did it.

Then We Talked to the Attorney

Here’s the important part and it all comes down to money.  The insurance people don’t like pay as you go.  They want you to hand them a neat little package that says you are 100% cured and won’t be bothering them again.  In fact, that’s their policy – send us the bill when you’re through and then we’ll talk.  They hope you’ll want to handle it all yourself for any or all of these reasons:

  • Maybe you’ll think it’s all to much of a hassle and put up with that stiff neck.
  • Maybe you’ll try to handle it yourself and you’ll believe them when they say a certain test or treatment is not necessary.
  • Maybe you’re not so good at all that paperwork and in the end you’ll end up filing for less than it really cost you – or not file at all.
  • Maybe you won’t find out about all the types of things you can be reimbursed for – especially future consequences that can be documented.
  • Maybe you’re not that good of a negotiator and when in the end they offer you $XXXX to settle, you’ll just take it.

Meanwhile, all the people who are providing x-rays, physical therapy and other care need to get paid for their services.  They understand the insurance company is supposed to cover all the expenses, but they also know the insurance company isn’t going to fork over a penny until they know how much the total bill will be.

See, getting your car fixed or replaced is the easy part.  Having your car in the shop for a few weeks with a rental car in the meantime or a nice fat check for a totaled car might be expensive for the insurance company, but it’s all over in a matter of weeks and there is a finite amount of money involved.  Getting your body fixed isn’t that simple.

The medical people have no way to know exactly how much of an impact your injury will have on you or how long it will take to fix it or even if they’ll ever be able to fix it completely.  For this relatively minor injury that I have suffered, I could be in treatment for a year and could be left with arthritis or some other complaint that will be with me forever.  Exactly how much money will arthritis treatments cost for the rest of my life?  Good question!

So what did I do?  Come back next week and I’ll tell you.

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What I’ve Learned About Crashes

OOOOOOPS!

OOOOOOPS!

AT HOME IN HEATH: A LITTLE ACCIDENT CAN RUIN YOUR YEAR

It should have been no big deal.  The kid did something stupid and banged up my car.  It felt like I had somehow bumped my head and my neck was stiff.  I was shook up more than anything else, but  I told my husband that I should go have my neck checked out, just in case.  He said he didn’t think it was necessary.  He put me in my big easy chair and gave me some ibuprofen.

Go Check It Out!

If you are ever in a wreck and have the slightest touch of pain, go have it checked out immediately.  I think because Bill was able to drive my car home, he had the impression the wreck wasn’t that big of a deal.  I wasn’t bleeding and nothing was broken, so how bad could it be.  Right?

Besides, nothing is more pathetic than folks who try to take advantage of other people.  They get in a little fender bender and jump out of the car holding their neck.  We are not those people.  Sure my neck was stiff, but Bill assured me it would get better, so I just gritted my teeth and waited for that to happen.

The next couple of days, my neck really hurt and I kept dropping things.  Now I am a bit of a klutz, but this wasn’t your run of the mill carelessness.  I’m standing in the kitchen holding a stack of dinner plates firmly with both hands and the next thing I know they are in a million pieces on the counter.  Then there was the plastic tumbler full of soda – the same tumbler I carry around all day long every day.  I didn’t hit it with my elbow.  My hands weren’t greasy.  I didn’t miss the edge of the counter.  I picked it up and then it was on the floor.

Medicine Ain’t What It Used To Be

After the first few days, Bill was right, my neck did seem to feel a little better.  Not normal, but better.  Certainly I was on the road to recovery – wasn’t I?  Some days were better than others.  Some days it was mainly a dull ache.  On other days I’d have a stab of pain that would almost buckle my knees.  But certainly I was getting better, surely I was getting better, it made sense that I should be getting better.

I wasn’t getting better.  I wasn’t suffering as dramatically as I had the first few days, but my neck and shoulders hurt.  So then I had to try and get medical attention.  First I called my doctor.  She wouldn’t even see me.  She doesn’t do car wrecks, but she gave me a number to call.

I looked the clinic up and it was on the other side of town.  The other side of town where I used to live.  The other side of town where my doctor has her office.  The other side of town that I didn’t want to commute back and forth to for what I thought might be a couple of weeks of physical therapy.

So, I called a clinic of the same sort on my side of town.  After several days and a game of phone tag with me doing all the tagging, they said I’d have to get a doctor’s referral and they didn’t do my doctor.  What was I supposed to do now?

So I called my doctor again and asked if they had anybody with more locations.  She gave me the number of a medical group that had offices “all over Dallas.”  Her idea of “all over Dallas” and my idea of “all over Dallas” were obviously very different.  Her idea of “all over Dallas” didn’t make it over to my side of Central Expressway.  So much for the whole “all over thing.”

I’ve run out of time today, but the fun is just starting, so please come back next week.  Then we can talk about x-rays, MRI’s and attorneys.

 

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