If you are in a car accident while pregnant, the health of your unborn child is your most important focus.
A pregnancy without incident already requires frequent doctor visits and monitoring to ensure the healthiest outcome for your baby.
A car accident while pregnant can increase your medical needs substantially as you try to care for your unborn child and yourself.
You need to do what you can to reduce your stress and protect your health after a car accident, but you should also fight to hold an at-fault driver accountable.
A car accident attorney can take on the stress of your fight against an at-fault driver and fight to maximize your recovery of damages.
What Should a Pregnant Victim Do After a Car Accident?
There are many steps to take after suffering a car accident as a pregnant person. You want to ensure you receive appropriate health care for you and your baby. You also want to ensure that you recover all your losses from an at-fault driver.
Immediate Medical Care Is the Most Important Step
The most important step to take when you are in a car accident and pregnant is to seek medical care immediately. Even if you don’t feel injured, your child could have suffered an injury you cannot detect without medical intervention.
An unborn child can suffer many complications from a car accident, including low birth weight, and death. The risk of placental abruption from a car accident is significant.
Placental abruption is the premature separation of the placental from the wall of the uterus. A placental abruption can cause significant harm to you and your baby, including premature birth, excessive maternal bleeding, low birth weight, and sometimes fetal death.
There are a number of health problems a car accident can cause for a pregnant woman, and you may not be able to identify a problem without medical technology. Immediate medical attention is paramount for your baby’s health and your health.
Report the Accident Quickly
If your accident causes personal injury or at least $500 of property damage, you must notify the local police department right away. You must also submit a written accident report to the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission within 10 days.
If your condition prevents you from submitting a report, another vehicle occupant or the vehicle owner can submit it.
Collect Evidence of the Accident and Your Damages
If you are the victim of a car accident while pregnant, compensation for your losses is very important. You need compensation to cover necessary medical care, to cover financial losses, and to address your emotional distress.
A large portion of your compensation depends on the quality of the evidence you collect regarding your accident. You should locate and keep all documents proving your out-of-pocket expenses for medical care and property repair. You should collect contact information for all potential witnesses.
You also need documents that prove liability, and you should document how your quality of life has changed.
Seek Regular Medical Care and Monitoring
Babies develop quickly, and so do complications from a motor vehicle accident. You should regularly monitor your health and the health of your child to quickly catch any accident-related problem. Warning signs of an accident-related pregnancy complication include:
- Vaginal bleeding of any amount
- Persistent abdominal pain
- Uterine soreness or rigidity
- Signs of early labor
- Severe, persistent nausea, with or without vomiting
- Blurry vision
- Spotty vision
- Double vision
- Sudden swelling of face, hands, or feet
- A decrease or change in fetal movement
Seek medical care for these symptoms or any other symptoms right away. Do not wait for the at-fault driver or their insurance to pay for your medical care. Address any medical concerns or medical recommendations immediately, and keep your receipts for reimbursement.
Hire an Attorney
Preparing for the arrival of your unborn child should be a joyous time. The aftermath of a car accident can bring serious concerns about the health of your child and can rob you of your joy.
Do not face the task of protecting your pregnancy and recovering from an accident alone. Hiring a car accident attorney to recover your losses and compensate you for your suffering is crucial to your peace of mind.
An attorney can help maximize your recovery in a lawsuit
If you suffer injury in a car accident while pregnant, a lawsuit can help you recover economic damages, noneconomic damages, and punitive damages.
Your economic damages include your financial losses from medical care, wage loss, and property damage. Your noneconomic damages compensate you for intangible damages like pain and suffering.
Pain and suffering can be hard to break down into dollars and cents, but it is an important component of your recovery, especially if you suffer loss of a child, injury of a child, or stress and pain related to the accident. A car accident attorney can help you quantify your pain so you can hold an at-fault driver accountable for your suffering.
If the at-fault driver acted with malice or wanton and willful disregard toward others, you can receive punitive damages. You must prove your entitlement to punitive damages by the high standard of clear and convincing evidence.
An attorney can help you determine whether your claim meets this standard.
An attorney can help maximize your recovery in a settlement
If you lack the funds to pay for accident-related care during your pregnancy, a car accident settlement can bring you compensation more quickly than a lawsuit. If you are in a car accident while pregnant, settlement of your claim should cover the same damages you can receive in a lawsuit.
An auto insurance company may try to diminish your loss during settlement negotiations—do not give in without a fight. An attorney has the tools to fiercely advocate for every penny you are owed. Hiring a car accident attorney is your best option to recover the maximum amount for your financial losses and suffering.
You Have Limited Time to Recover Damages
If you are in a car accident while pregnant, settlement or adjudication of your claim is time consuming and subject to limitations. You have only two years to sue for damages from a car accident.
Your time after an accident will most likely be occupied by receiving medical treatments, caring for your child, and supporting your household.
You should hire an attorney immediately after a car accident to meet the deadlines of your claim and maximize your recovery from an at-fault driver.
Contact an Attorney Today
The car accident attorneys at O’Conner, Parsons, Lane & Noble are some of New Jersey’s finest trial attorneys. We are tough advocates for your rights, and we possess the compassion to support and encourage you during especially vulnerable times in life.
Contact us by email or call us at 908-928-9200 for a consultation and peace of mind.