One of the most frustrating aspects of a serious car accident is confronting the need to recover from severe injuries for which one bears no responsibility. This reality can make the path back to health and wellness even more challenging, as victims grapple with the question why me?
Unfortunately, these feelings lead some victims to feel depressed, listless and generally incapable of facing their recovery head-on. In certain cases, victims may suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and phobias that last long after the physical scars have healed.
Picking up the pieces
Due to a number of factors, including non-physical side effects of crashes, certain victims do not take the necessary steps to minimize the effect of their accidents. Many erroneously believe that because the accident was not their fault, they can sit back and wait for the responsible party to compensate them for their injuries. In reality, this is not true.
In personal injury cases such as car accidents, victims have a legal duty to mitigate their damages. This means that they must minimize the effects of the accident in any reasonable way possible, instead of assuming that they will be compensated for everything from the point of injury forward. The failure to take necessary steps to minimize damages may actually reduce the amount of damages a victim receives in a settlement or judgment. In fact, plaintiffs will rarely be compensated for damages they could have avoided had they taken the necessary steps.
There are varieties of ways victims can mitigate the damages. These include:
- Receiving necessary medical attention and following doctors’ orders to ensure that any injuries are not exacerbated through neglect
- Eschewing unproven alternative medical treatments if more conventional means are proven to get results
- Seeking alternate employment when a victim can no longer work in their given field or profession
For guidance on mitigating damages in personal injury cases, seek the advice of a qualified legal counselor.