If another driver’s negligence leaves you with a broken hand, you are facing severe pain in addition to severe physical limitations. A fractured hand can leave you off the job – no matter what kind of work you do – for a long stretch, and hand surgeries are highly specialized medical procedures that are costly and often lead to ongoing healthcare needs. If your hand’s been broken in a car accident that was caused by another motorist’s negligence, seek the professional legal counsel of an experienced car accident lawyer in South Carolina today.
The Mayo Clinic shares that a broken hand amounts to a break or crack in at least one of the many bones that make up the hand and that car accidents are one of the most common causes of these exceptionally painful injuries. When a broken hand results from a car accident, it often involves multiple breaks and can require surgery. Obtaining the treatment that you need as soon after suffering a fractured hand as possible is critical to your ability to regain the ability to use your hand for all daily living activities that you rely on it to perform.
Signs that Your Hand May Be Broken
Any of the following symptoms and signs can be indicative of a broken hand:
- Intense pain that may increase when you move your hand or attempt to grip or squeeze something
- Tenderness and bruising
- Stiffness in your hand or an inability to move your fingers and thumb
- An obvious deformity in your hand
Symptoms like numbness, swelling, or difficulty moving your fingers are signs that you need immediate medical attention, and your ability to heal fully could hinge upon it.
The Need for Surgery
A broken hand will sometimes require surgery to implant screws, plates, rods, or pins that help stabilize the delicate bones in place while they heal. A bone graft is another surgical option. The signs that your broken hand may require surgery include:
- The fractured bone pieces moved before they began healing
- You have an open fracture
- There is damage to your surrounding ligaments, blood vessels, or nerves
- You have loose bone fragments that could move into a joint
- The fracture extends into one of your joints
Your doctor will carefully monitor your broken hand with x-rays to detect any shifting in the bones as they heal. If movement is evident, surgery may be necessary.
Complications that Can Arise
A broken hand can lead to severe complications that make it difficult to resume your pre-accident lifestyle, including:
- An ongoing physical disability, such as severe stiffness and chronic aching
- Osteoarthritis that comes on years after the break
- Damage to adjacent nerves or blood vessels, which can lead to numbness and that should be professionally attended to immediately
The Car Accident
Unfortunately, negligent drivers are often the cause of dangerous car accidents that lead to serious injuries, such as broken hands. While your car accident and your car accident claim will be unique to your situation, the kinds of negligence that are commonly at the heart of car accidents include:
- Distraction – Distracted drivers, do not pay adequate attention to the road ahead, making them hazardous drivers. Texting behind the wheel is all too common and is the most dangerous distraction of all.
- Impairment – Impaired drivers often cause serious car accidents that would have been avoidable had they been sober.
- Exhaustion – Drowsy drivers suffer physical and cognitive impairments that mimic those experienced by drunk drivers (making them hazardous drivers).
- Excess Speed – Speed plays a critical role in far too many deadly car accidents.
- Aggression – Aggressive drivers take dangerous driving in new directions, and they are easily among the most dangerous drivers on our roads.
Your Car Accident Claim
A driver’s negligence left you with a broken hand, and you will file your car accident claim with the at-fault driver’s car insurance company. And this is where things tend to get complicated. While it is true that the insurance company is explicitly paid to cover your claim by compensating you for the damages (or losses) you’ve incurred, it is not relatively that easy. The insurance company is in the business of making money, and the way it manages to do this is by keeping settlements as low as possible. Some of their handy tactics for doing so include:
- Offering an early settlement that is far too low to cover your complete losses but that the insurance company is hoping you will accept out of desperation (as your medical bills rack up and your earnings dwindle)
- Making the claims process so convoluted and protracted that you give up in exasperation
- Attempting to fob blame off on you (rather than where it belongs – with their client, the negligent motorist)
- Denying the extent of your physical, financial, and emotional losses
While the insurance company has an arsenal of weapons that it may deploy, you have your brand of personal protection – in the form of your dedicated South Carolina car accident lawyer, who will skillfully advocate for your rights and your rightful compensation.
The damages you suffer as a result of a broken hand are likely to be extensive.
Your Medical Expenses
Your hand represents a highly calibrated system of bones, ligaments, and more that works in miraculous ways to perform every task that you accomplish in a day. A broken hand can be a severe impediment that requires particular medical attention, which means you can expect your medical expenses to be high. Consider the following common costs:
- Emergency care
- Surgery, aftercare, and follow-up care
- Treatment from multiple medical professionals
- Intensive pain management
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Ongoing treatment and care
Your Lost Income
Your hand has been injured, and whether you work in an office, a factory, a store, or anywhere else, it is going to affect your ability to do your job. This is a given, and it is also highly likely that you will experience a decrease in earnings while you recover full use of your hand. If there are complications involved, and your broken hand alters your career path, you could face a diminished ability to earn into your future.
Your Pain and Suffering
Any injury to the hand is a painful injury, and the pain you experience is likely to be considerable. However, the emotional pain and suffering accompanying a severe car accident that leaves you with a broken hand are also essential to address. Many accident victims endure emotional consequences due to the accidents’ stark violence and physical pain. These can include:
- Increased anxiety
- Panic attacks
- Bouts of depression
- Sleep disturbances, including night terrors
- Flashbacks to the accident
- Intense fear of driving
- Severe mood swings
- Abrupt changes in personality
- Crying jags
To reach your fullest recovery, you’ll need to address all of your damages, including your physical and emotional pain and suffering.
You’ve suffered a broken hand due to another motorist’s negligence, and you have questions about how best to proceed. The answers to some of the most frequently asked questions can help.
Do I need an attorney, and can I afford one?
The answer to both of these questions is a resounding yes. While you aren’t required to have a dedicated car crash attorney, doing so is always in your best interest. And yes, you can afford to hire one. Most reputable car accident lawyers in South Carolina work on contingency, and this means that your attorney’s pay is contingent upon your settlement (or court award). If you do not receive either, you won’t owe anything.
What if the insurance company says that I’m at fault?
Blaming the claimant is a common ploy used by insurance companies, and it is not something you need to worry about. If your experienced car accident lawyer considers your claim solid, moving forward with it is advised. Even if you share some of the faults for the accident that left you injured, as long as it isn’t more than 50 percent, it remains your legal right to pursue compensation for the percentage of your damages that the other driver is responsible for.
An Experienced South Carolina Car Accident Attorney Can Help
Suffering a broken hand is difficult, but it is that much more so when it’s the result of another driver’s negligence. The knowledgeable and experienced car accidents lawyers at David Aylor Law Offices in South Carolina have reserves of impressive experience guiding claims like yours toward beneficial resolutions, and we’re here for you, too. For more information about how we can help you, please don’t wait to contact or call us at 843-733-7662 to schedule a free case evaluation today.