Washington semi-truck accidents can be devastating, leaving victims seriously injured and unable to provide for themselves. When a full medical recovery seems unlikely, victims may need additional assistance to meet their everyday needs. While long-term care is often expensive, Washington state law affords victims the right to secure the compensation needed to obtain the care they need and the justice they deserve.
Long-Term Care After a Truck Accident in Washington State
Long-term care is a broad term, encompassing a variety of services that people might need to meet their medical or personal care needs. In general, long-term care is intended to help individuals remain as independent as possible—even if they can no longer work, go grocery shopping, or perform routine chores.
While long-term care is often associated with older adults, accident victims may need access to this critical service, too. Despite the phrase’s implications, long-term care can be provided for either a short period of time or a longer duration. An accident victim might need temporary long-term care if they:
- Require extensive or intensive physical rehabilitation
- Need to recover from surgery or another invasive medical procedure
- Have been diagnosed with a terminal or debilitating medical condition
Depending on the circumstances of their semi-truck accident injuries, victims might need assistance for a longer period of time, especially if the crash resulted in chronic pain or permanent disability.
Long-Term Care Benefits
Since long-term care is a broad term, its definition encompasses the provision of many different services. These services are usually tailored to a patient’s individual needs. Long-term care could include:
- Pain management
- Assistance with dressing, eating, or grooming
- Grocery shopping
- Laundry services
- Household maintenance
- In-home physical rehabilitation
Long-term care benefits are usually provided by a loved one inside the recipient’s own home. However, long-term care could also be rendered by healthcare companies that specialize in the treatment of aging or disabled patients. Professional agencies may have workers who travel to their clients’ homes, while others might ask that the patient relocates to an assisted living facility.
Paying for Long-Term Care
Even accident victims who have robust insurance coverage might be surprised to learn that many policies provide no long-term care benefits.
While friends and family members may be able to offer some assistance, long-term care can be demanding—especially if the patient needs help throughout the day. Although the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services can reimburse loved ones who perform certain care tasks, the state does not typically provide the compensation necessary to obtain around-the-clock professional care.
However, accident victims do not have to rely on the generosity of loved ones: trucking companies, like most other commercial businesses, have a legal duty of care. In other words, they have a responsibility to operate in a manner that minimizes the risk of harm to their employees and to the general public. When logistics companies abrogate their duty of care by dispatching under-trained drivers, ignoring federal maintenance requirements, or otherwise acting negligently, they could be held liable for the costs of any resulting accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an 18-wheeler collision that was not your fault, you could be entitled to significant compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. An experienced Seattle-area semi-truck accident attorney could help you recover damages for your:
- Past, present, and anticipated medical care
- Physical rehabilitation
- Prescription medication co-pays
- Long-term assistance
- Lost income from work
- Lost economic opportunity
- Diminished earning potential
- Loss of enjoyment
- Emotional pain and suffering
Washington does not currently cap the damages that a semi-truck accident victim could receive from a successful personal injury lawsuit. However, Evergreen State does have a strict statute of limitations: if you wait too long to contact an attorney, the court could dismiss your claim on a technicality, preventing you from obtaining the compensation you need to reclaim your independence.