Should I Hire a Lawyer for a Meniscus Injury?

Meniscus Injury

meniscus injury after car accident

Knee injuries are a common form of injury to sustain in a car accident. Regardless if it’s the driver or front seat passenger in the vehicle, the legs can aggressively slam into the car’s dashboard, causing victims to suffer severe injury.  In fact, approximately 10% of all injuries from car accidents are knee-related injuries, like a meniscus injury. 

If you’ve suffered a meniscus injury because of someone else’s negligence, you could be compensated for damages. Depending on the circumstances, injured victims could benefit from hiring a personal injury attorney. Here is what you need to know about car accident cases involving a meniscus injury. 


What Is a Meniscus Injury?

Your meniscus is a c-shaped piece of cartilage. It acts as a shock absorber and stabilizer in your knee. When you tear your meniscus partially or fully, you compromise the function of your knee. 

Typically, when the knee is injured or aggravated, the knee will swell and hurt intensely because the shock absorber and stabilizer are no longer intact. You can easily tear your meniscus when you’re in a car accident, whether it’s a head-on collision, a side swipe, or a fender bender. Here are the basic signs you have torn your meniscus. 

  • Tenderness along the joint line
  • Weakness when bending your knee
  • Pain when you bend your knee
  • Locking or catching sensation when you bend your knee
  • Discomfort when standing up
  • Struggling when going up or down stairs

When you tear your meniscus, you can do so in one of three directions. A lateral tear goes along the outside of the knee while a medial tear is on the inside. A meniscal root tear is a tear where the meniscus attaches to the bone. 


Diagnosing a Meniscus Tear

common car accident injury treated by a doctor

When you tear your meniscus, you will feel pain immediately after the car accident. You’ll feel like your knee gave out, and you will likely feel severe pain when trying to walk. Even if you do not experience these symptoms, seek immediate medical attention. Doing so will prevent the injury from getting worse. In addition, it will indicate to the insurance company that you were suffering a form of injury as a direct result of the car accident.

When you go to the doctor, they will examine your knee for swelling and tenderness. They will work on the joint by bending it and rotating it. When they do this, they’re listening for the clicking sound. 

If the doctor suspects a meniscus tear, they will order an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). This form of medical imaging generates a visual of the body’s internal anatomy. Taking an MRI will show if you have or have not torn the meniscus. 


Treating Meniscus Tears

If you have a mild tear, your doctor will prescribe anti-inflammatory medications and let the meniscus heal on its own. You may also need physical therapy as you wait for the meniscus to heal.

If you’ve torn your meniscus completely, you’ll need to have the meniscus surgically trimmed. It’s important that you follow the doctor’s treatment plan. Otherwise, an accusation could be made by the other party’s insurance company that you were not as injured as you claimed to be.

If you have a labor-intensive job, you will have to stop work while you wait for the meniscus to heal. The time missed from work can be compensated after filing a car accident claim.


Benefits of Hiring an Attorney 

car accident lawyer can help with meniscus injury claim

If your meniscus tear resulted from someone else’s negligence, then you should hire a qualified personal injury attorney. The success of your claim depends on a few factors. 

Determine Liability

The success of your claim rests heavily on who is legally responsible for your injury. 

Sometimes the responsibility is obvious. If you sustain the injury in a car accident, for example, and the accident is not your fault, then the party at fault should pay for your damages. The law firm will perform an investigation and collect supporting evidence to prove the other party is liable.

Establish Case Value

The type of injury you sustain will determine how much compensation you’re due. A personal injury attorney can help you come up with a settlement amount. For example, if you completely tear your meniscus, you’ll need surgery to repair the kneed and will likely have to miss time from work. Your personal injury lawyer will calculate all accumulated costs that are causing a financial burden including medical bills, physical therapy, and lost wages from missing work.

Help with Recovery

The law firm you work with should have partnerships with the best medical providers in the area. The law offices can help you schedule appointments for surgeries, follow-up visits, and physical therapy sessions. Because you’re working with the attorney, they will be able to track all medical bills and include the amount in the lawsuit, so you are appropriately compensated. 


Hiring Strong Legal Representation

In order to receive the best possible settlement for your meniscus injury, you need an attorney with experience. A car accident attorney will understand the laws surrounding traffic accidents and proving negligence. Do you need a great personal injury lawyer? If so, contact The Law Offices of Daniel Kim. We specialize in car accident cases and can help you recover maximum compensation. Our law firm offers a free consultation to get started.