Visitor Question

No Medical Coverage After Accident in a Store?

Submitted By: Stephanie (Clovis, CA)

I fell at a store due to liquid on the floor. There were many witnesses and a demonstrator for the store had straight eye contact with me as I fell. I was given an accident report but when I went to my doctor they refused to see me, stating they did not deal with insurance forms.

I called several lawyers from the phone book and received no replies. Embarrassed and frustrated I left it alone but now six months later the pain is very bad. There are days I cannot walk and even lying down causes extreme pain.

Do I have other options without having a huge doctor bill? I cannot pay out of pocket and I have no insurance. What can I do? Thank you.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Stephanie,

You still have plenty of time to either settle your claim or file a lawsuit. The Statute of Limitations in the State of California for personal injuries is 2 years. So as long as you either settle your insurance claim or file a lawsuit within that period you’ll be fine. If you miss the statute by even one day you will probably lose your right to sue.

Contact the manager or owner of the store. Hopefully the accident report you mentioned was filled out by the store’s owner or someone in a position of authority.

When you speak with the owner or manager refer them to the date of your fall. Tell them the truth. You’re not the only person who has had delayed symptoms for a back injury. It’s quite common.

Tell the manager/owner you are in a great deal of back pain.

Tell them when you first noticed the symptoms. Explain you don’t have any medical insurance and you would like them to have someone from their insurance company contact you to make arrangements to pay for your treatment.

If they cooperate you should be able to get the medical help you need.

You may need an MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) examination. The MRI is an excellent tool for discovering causes of back problem.

If the store won’t cooperate you can either file a lawsuit against them in Small Claims Court or continue to seek representation from a personal injury attorney.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: July 17, 2012

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