Physical injuries and suffering are only one part of a personal injury accident—the financial losses can also be devastating. When you’re injured in a personal injury accident, you need to know what economic challenges lie ahead and how to address them.
Our Colorado personal injury lawyers explain everything you need to know about financial loss following an accident and the resources that could help on your road to recovery.
What If I Need Money After Personal Injury?
If you need money after a personal injury accident, here are some things you can do:
1. Start Your Personal Injury Claim Right Away
A personal injury claim takes time. However, the sooner you get started, the sooner you have a check in your hands.
2. Pursue a Lien for Medical Treatment
A medical lien can help you get treatment now as you wait for your personal injury settlement. As of September 2021, Colorado has a new law to protect accident victims who take advantage of medical liens. You’re not liable for any additional amounts if your settlement is less than the amount of outstanding medical debt. If you do not receive a settlement, you are not obligated to pay. A lien cannot be assigned to a collection agency. See Colorado House Bill 21-1300 – Health-care Provider Liens1.
3. Determine if You Qualify for Disability
You may be eligible for benefits from Social Security Disability Insurance. It is a program that you pay into while you work, in case you find yourself injured later. You must apply and provide information about your disability to receive benefits.
4. Workers’ Compensation
If you are injured on the job, medical care and replacement income may be available through a workers’ compensation claim.
5. Health Insurance and Other Insurance Coverage
Even if another party is ultimately liable to pay damages, your own health insurance may be applicable in the interim. Plus, look carefully at other kinds of insurance coverage that may be provided by your employer. You may not realize that you are covered by a short-term or long-term disability insurance policy.
6. Pre-Settlement Loans
A pre-settlement loan is what it sounds like—a company agrees to forward you some cash while you wait for your case to resolve. However, this should be the last option to consider. The lending fees and interest rates can be very high, and if your settlement is less than you expect, you’re on the hook to repay the money. If you opt to use a pre-settlement loan, be sure to go in with your eyes open and take the time to understand all the details. You don’t want to be in for a surprise when you finally receive your settlement.
7. Government Assistance
You may qualify for one or more government programs to assist with housing and cash benefits.
8. Charitable Organizations
A charity or religious organization may provide financial assistance if you are struggling after a personal injury accident.
9. 401K Loans
While it should be seen as a last resort, you may be able to borrow from 401k funds to meet basic expenses after a personal injury accident.
10. Contingency Fee Legal Representation
Many attorneys represent victims of personal injury accidents on a contingency fee basis. That means there’s no money due upfront and no cost unless you win your case. Although your attorney cannot lend you living expenses while you wait, they can work on the case with no money upfront and no fee unless you win.
Does a Personal Injury Cause Financial Loss?
There are several ways that a personal injury accident may cause a financial loss. First, you may have unexpected medical bills, and these bills are often catastrophic. There is also a cost to traveling to appointments, buying prescriptions and getting the over-the-counter things you need for your health and treatment after a personal injury.
Direct out-of-pocket, unexpected bills are just the beginning. A personal injury may interfere with your ability to work. You may need help doing things around the house that you used to do for yourself. Childcare may also become a necessity. Some financial losses are obvious, but others may be more subtle. Suffering injuries in an accident puts a financial strain on your life and cause worry at the same time.
How Can I Cope With Significant Financial Loss After an Accident?
To cope with significant financial loss after an accident, explore both short-term and long-term solutions. Some questions to ask yourself as you plan include:
- What are my legal options? What financial recovery can I claim by pursuing my legal rights? During the process, what do I need to do to make sure that my legal claim is as successful as possible?
- What insurance may be available to help me? Can my own health insurance and car insurance apply? What about the other driver’s insurance? Are there commercial policies, a rideshare accident guarantee or a taxi company policy, too?
- Do I qualify for workers’ compensation or long-term disability? Are there government programs that can help me?
- How can I have legal representation with no cost upfront and no risk to me? Does this personal injury attorney handle cases on a contingency fee basis?
- With the different ways to get cash now, what is the best way for my personal situation? What are the pros and cons of the different loan and cash forwarding options? Do I understand all the fine print about how these programs work? Are there any other options?
- Is bankruptcy right for me? What is the total picture of my assets and debts?
- How do I expect my situation to change long-term? If I am going to be unable to work, are there ways that I can adjust my spending and expenses?
Lawyers for Financial Losses After a Personal Injury Accident
If you have suffered financial losses after a personal injury accident, the entire circumstances can seem overwhelming. But you don’t have to fight alone. Let our lawyers for financial losses after a personal injury accident help you understand your situation and explore options that may be available to you. We’ve helped many people in your situation, and you’re not alone. Contact us today for your free consultation.