COVID-19 has affected all areas of life, including personal injury claims.
COVID-19 has had a much more significant impact on our lives than anyone could have expected. From kids being out of school to mass unemployment, it has taken a toll on everyone in one way or another. In the United States, there have been 27.4 million COVID cases and nearly 500 thousand deaths.
Coronavirus has also completely changed how we interact with other people outside our home. Some Florida counties have a required mask mandate, while others do not. While there are fewer cars on the road because of this, accidents have not decreased overall. However, during the first five months of the COVID shutdown, Florida recorded safer roadways and low fatality rates.
So, how is Coronavirus affecting the process of personal injury cases? While car accidents are among the larger categories of personal injury, other accidents include:
- slips and falls
- medical malpractice
- truck accidents
- bicycle accidents
- nursing home abuse
- wrongful death
- drowning accidents
Increased Pressure to Settle
Insurance companies almost always press to settle early. Insurance companies have many clients with lawsuits filed against them. And stretching out the settlement process or taking the lawsuit to trial is never in their best influence. They want to get in and get out as quickly as possible. However, the pressure they put on you to settle your case may be much higher than it was pre-COVID. They know that the pandemic has taken a toll on people and that money is an issue for many families during this time. They’ll use this to pressure you, telling you that it’s the only way you’re going to get money quick out of your lawsuit.
You mustn’t listen to them to avoid taking the easy money. The instant gratification of receiving the money can be nice. Still, you can miss out on a much larger sum (that actually covers your total damages) if you choose to turn down early settlement offers.
Some Healthcare is Restricted
Hospital ICUs are still more packed than usual. Across the nation, hospitals are 76% full on average. In Florida, ICUs are approximately 83% full. In Tampa, ICUs are about 79% full. Some of the larger hospitals (such as Kindred Hospital of Central Tampa and Tampa General Hospital) are at 100% and 91% capacity, respectively.
With fuller hospitals, the healthcare you need may not be as easily accessible. You may experience longer wait times, which could potentially worsen your condition. When it comes to your care with your doctor or any specialists, you may be required to partake in video visits rather than physical ones. Appointment space may also fill up faster, so you may have to wait longer between scheduling and attending your appointment.
With COVID on the mind, medical professionals may commit more medical malpractice than usual without meaning to. Hospitals generally want to get people in and out as fast as possible. Because of COVID, that’s become even more true. Medical malpractice can occur if your condition is not properly diagnosed because of their negligence.
Crowded Court Systems
To prevent further spread of Coronavirus, jury trials, as well as other court appearances, are being delayed. While most personal injury claims never make it to trial, you should keep this in mind just in case yours does. Your attorney will be able to keep you up to date on any delays you might need to know about, as delays may affect your decision to settle your claim.
Interactions with Your Attorney
Like most appointments and meetings these days, you might have to hop on a Zoom call with your attorney rather than seeing them in person. We know that this isn’t ideal. However, it will still be business as usual while we try to ensure that everyone remains safe and healthy. Not all interactions are held virtually, but some may be. It’s best to prevent unnecessary in-person contact to keep you (and our attorneys) free from COVID while working on your case.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a personal injury accident during the COVID-19 pandemic, our attorneys at The Eberst Law Firm are ready to help you get the compensation that you deserve. We know how stressful it is to be involved in an accident. And we know that the pandemic doesn’t make things any easier. However, we’re ready to stand beside you and help you through it.
When hiring an attorney from The Eberst Law Firm , you hire someone who will talk to insurance companies on your behalf, argue a settlement offer, and argue your case if it goes to trial. They’ll handle the hard stuff while you focus on resting and recovering.