When most people think of the costs of a car accident, they usually think about traffic citations, medical bills and property damage to their vehicle – but car accidents can result in much more devastating consequences that aren’t necessarily immediately apparent.
Here are some of the “hidden costs” of a wreck that you may experience and should be on the watch for as you’re seeking rightful compensation.
Car accidents can leave victims with emotional and psychological scars that may take a significant toll on their well-being. Up to 33% of survivors may experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression and other mental health issues after a crash. These conditions can require ongoing therapy or counseling, leading to expenses that are not always covered by your insurance.
Reduced earnings capacity
Serious injuries sustained in a car accident can result in temporary or permanent disabilities, which can ultimately make it challenging for victims to return to their previous employment. While it’s usually easy to figure out lost wages due to time off work for recovery, it’s harder to calculate the reduced earnings capacity that comes with a massive career change following a wreck. You may even need to pay for new training or education in order to make a switch.
Lost career opportunities
You can’t control when an opportunity for career advancement will come along. If that happens to be while you’re recovering from a wreck and it passes you buy, it can be difficult to regain your career’s momentum. The setback can translate into real financial losses for you, even if you can eventually return to your regular occupation.
Home modifications and accessibility needs
Some injuries may require long-term care or assistive devices, all of which can add up to substantial medical expenses that may surpass the limits of insurance coverage. If the accident results in long-term disabilities, you may have to make modifications to your home to improve its accessibility and accommodate your new needs. This could involve installing ramps, elevators or accessible bathrooms, which can be very expensive.
A serious injury can change your entire family’s dynamics, and you may find your personal relationships with your spouse, parents, children and friends to be dramatically different. This is particularly true if you’ve suffered injuries that affect your personality or ability to care for your own needs.
Understanding and accounting for these hidden costs may be truly consequential when it comes time to seek fair compensation, so that you can rebuild your life following a devastating crash.