Maybe you already know a bit about concussions. You know that you can get them several ways, such as slip-and-falls or violent collisions while playing sports. Perhaps you even know how many concussions can lead to chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a dangerous medical condition.
Today, though, we are not going to talk about. Instead, we’re going to dive into how they affect your finances. While concussions aren’t good news from a health standpoint, they might mean a significant bank account hit as well.
In a way, if you suffer a concussion and can hold someone else responsible, you’re on better footing than if you can only blame yourself. For example, if you fell and hit your head while in your own home, there’s probably no way you can collect money on that injury to help pay your medical bills.
If there is another party who you feel caused your concussion, you can:
- File a lawsuit against them
- Possibly collect a judgment that will help your financial situation
If you decide to do this, you have to act quickly, because, in most states, there is a limitation statute. For example, in California, you have two years from the injury date to file a claim.
Even if you’re not particularly litigious, you may have no choice but to do this. That’s because, with a concussion, your doctor bills can quickly pile up.
When you go see a doctor, depending on your symptoms, they may have to run some tests on you. If you have no health insurance or the insurance is not very good, those bills can rapidly bury you, especially if you don’t have a ton of savings.
You Might Have to Miss Some Work
If you sustained a concussion, that might also mean you’ll have to stay home from work for a while. That’s probably not an ideal situation for you. If you’re not working:
- You don’t have any money coming in
- You’ll have to dip into your savings
Maybe you don’t have a whole lot in the bank, and if you have severe concussion symptoms, it’s not going to last you for very long. This is a time when you should pursue a lawsuit if you can hold someone accountable for what happened.
If you’re the only one to blame, you’re out of luck in this regard. You just have to hope that you recover relatively quickly, assuming you don’t have the sort of position where you can work from home. More people are doing that these days, but some employers resist the idea.
You Might Have to See a Therapist
Another way concussions can hurt your finances is if you have to see a therapist for some of your symptoms. Generally, that won’t happen with one concussion. You can recover and resume your life quickly.
It’s when you have had more than one concussion that you start to get some more severe symptoms sometimes. Those can include things like headaches, nausea, and short-term memory loss.
You can see a doctor about those. Where you might involve a therapist is if you’re grappling with depression following a concussion.
This is something that happens fairly often. A concussion is a brain injury, and when you hurt your brain, it can change your personality. You might no longer be the happy-go-lucky person you used to be.
If you have health insurance, it might pay for some of your therapy bills, but probably not all of them. You certainly might have to deal with some hefty copays, and they’ll keep piling up the longer you’re seeing the therapist.
You Might Have to Pay a Lawyer
You also may decide that you can at least try to hold another individual or entity responsible for the conditions that led to your concussion. Maybe you hit your head when you fell in a store with a wet floor and improper signage.
You’ll need to get a personal injury lawyer, and they don’t come cheaply. You might have to pay them some money upfront to represent you, or they may charge an hourly rate.
You may accept this, or you could seek out a lawyer you can pay on a contingency basis. This probably makes more sense if you don’t have much money at the moment. If you hire a lawyer with a contingency payment plan in place, that means you pay them nothing unless you win your suit.
You Might Have Other Expenses
Maybe you got a concussion in a vehicle collision that was your fault. If so, hopefully, your insurance can pay for it.
Perhaps the other driver is bringing a lawsuit against you, though, because they feel like you owe them more than what your car insurance paid. If so, you have to hire a lawyer once again, this time to defend you in court.
Maybe it’s not specifically the concussion that’s draining your bank account in this scenario, but you’re still dealing with it while at the same time, you stand to lose a lot of money. It’s a hard situation when someone attacks you in the courtroom while you’re also dealing with this worrying medical condition.
You Might Have to Borrow Money from Relatives
While dealing with your concussion, if you’re home from work, other bills may pile up too. Those might include utility bills, car payments, grocery bills, etc.
If you have little money, you might need to ask a relative to help you out. They may do so, but you’ll need to pay them back at some point, which can be an additional worry for you.
If you don’t want to borrow money from relatives, you might look for a small bank or credit union loan. They might want collateral for that, though.
As you see, there are times when concussions go along with financial drains. Until you’re healthy and can resume your normal life, you might be in a tough spot with this particular injury.