What Should I Do if I’m in an Accident While Pregnant?

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A car accident as a pregnant mother can be dangerous for you and your infant’s health. Although the womb protects an infant somewhat in an impact, complications can occur. The physical and emotional traumas involved in a vehicle wreck could be enough to cause hemorrhaging, premature labor, traumatic injuries to the infant, or a miscarriage. The legal and insurance processes surrounding a car accident with a pregnant passenger can be more complex than a typical collision in Florida.

Call the Police

Florida law requires car accident reporting if the crash causes personal injuries, death, or more than $500 in property damages. A car accident while pregnant is a special case that typically compels a call to the police. The possibility of an injury to your unborn child, even if you do not have any visible injuries, make it important to involve the police from the scene of the crash.

Calling the police can create an official record of the collision, and help hold the at-fault driver accountable later. The police will document important details of the crash, as well as collect evidence such as photographs or interviews with eyewitnesses. Your insurance company may ask for the police report number during the claims process, or use a police officer’s determination of the cause of the crash to evaluate a claim.

Go to the Emergency Room

Immediate emergency medical care is important after any car accident, but especially so when one of the victims is pregnant. Symptoms that especially point to the need for urgent care include vaginal bleeding, sharp pains in the pelvis or abdomen, umbilical cord prolapse, or a loss of consciousness. Swelling in the face or fingers, change in a baby’s movements, severe headaches, fever, dizziness, or fainting in the days following an accident could also be signs of an emergency.

Go to the hospital if you notice signs of anything amiss in the minutes, hours, or weeks after a car accident. Even if you feel fine, go to the emergency room right away after a car accident. It does not matter how far along you are in your pregnancy or where you sustained an injury. You or your baby could have suffered harms from the gravitational forces of the wreck, blunt force traumas, or the emotional stress of the accident. Prompt medical care could save you or your child’s life.

Going to the hospital after a car accident also shows an insurance company that you took your crash seriously, and did your part to prevent further damage. Delaying medical care, on the other hand, could tell an insurer you did not suffer serious injuries, or that perhaps you contributed to you or your baby’s injuries by waiting too long to seek care. Call 911 from the scene of the accident and request an ambulance, or visit your doctor as soon as possible, for you and your child’s safety.

Call Your Insurance Company

Florida is a no-fault car insurance state. This means you will seek initial benefits for damages through your own auto insurer, even if someone else caused your crash. Call your insurance provider soon after the collision. Be honest with the facts of the case, but do not admit fault. You may also receive a call from the other driver’s insurance company, or an agent called an insurance claims adjuster. The adjuster’s job is to get you to settle for as little as possible.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney

Before saying yes to an insurance settlement, consult with a local Fort Lauderdale car accident lawyer about the value of your car accident claim. If you or your baby suffered any injuries or traumas in the crash, the insurance company may try to categorize your pregnancy as a pre-existing condition. This could lead to a denial of coverage for your medical bills. As someone in a car accident while pregnant, you are in a unique situation. Consulting with an attorney can help you protect you and your child’s best interests.