Experiencing a personal injury can happen in an instant, but the repercussions of that injury can last a lifetime. You may suffer from injuries and experience mental health challenges, but you will also have to deal with costs that can really add up.
Even if you’re working with a lawyer, you will likely have to figure out how to manage costs before you can receive economic damages from your personal injury case.
Here are five things that can get costly after a personal injury, with tips on reducing costs until your case is settled.
Medical costs can add up fast. Fixing a broken leg can cost as much as $7,500, while a 3-day hospital stay can set you back around $30,000.
The solution isn’t to avoid medical care after an accident. Visits to medical professionals and physical therapists can actually help you win your personal injury case.
Make sure you choose professionals who are in-network to keep costs low. Consider shopping around for an insurance policy that would serve you better now that you’re dealing with an injury. You should also see if you can get on a payment plan for bills that are due to reduce costs while you wait for your personal injury settlement.
Not working can really put a dent in your bank account. Proving future lost earnings in a personal injury case is important when it comes to helping you pay the bills, but the bills can add up in the meantime.
There are many community programs near you that might be able to help. From bill-pay programs for low-income earners to food banks and free home services, there are ways you can get the things you need, even if you aren’t currently making an income.
If you can’t return to work, even part-time, consider other things you may be able to do for a little extra money. From baking bread to making jewelry or watching the neighbor’s dog, there are likely a few things you can do here and there to make some extra cash while you aren’t working.
The good news is that you likely won’t have to worry about attorney fees after a personal injury. Most personal injury lawyers work on a contingency basis, which means they won’t get paid until you receive payment for your accident.
However, that doesn’t mean you don’t have to keep an eye on costs. There are case-related expenses that can add up fast and put a dent in the actual money you receive from your settlement.
Separate services that can cost extra include:
- Obtaining records, reports, and bills
- Witness fees
- Court costs, including sheriff fees
The good news is that your attorney will pay these fees for you upfront, but you’ll still want to keep an eye on them so you aren’t surprised when they are deducted from the money you are awarded after your case is over.
If you were injured in a car crash, you also have to worry about the damage to your vehicle.
Repairs have always been costly, but they’re even more expensive now. Car repair costs are up almost 20% compared to previous years. It costs even more if your vehicle is totaled and you have to buy a new one.
You may also have to think about car rental fees. If your vehicle is in the shop or you’re waiting to buy a new one, you may have to pay for a rental for at least a few days.
You can save a lot of money if you’re able to get by without a car. Take the bus or ask your friends and loved ones for a ride until your case is settled. When you have the money in hand, you can get your car fixed or replaced.
Mental Health Counseling
Personal injuries can affect a lot more than just your physical health. They can take a toll on your mental health too, especially if you’re involved in a personal injury case.
Mental health counseling can be invaluable, but it can be expensive, with the cost of therapy ranging between $100-$200 per session.
Look at your health insurance policy and see if therapy is covered, and if so, how many sessions are covered. You may also be able to find an online provider who can offer therapy services at a discounted rate.
Don’t let the costs of a personal injury catch you unawares. When you know how costs can add up, you can look for ways to reduce them.