Whiplash Injury Claims

Whiplash injury claims form a major part of vehicular accident insurance. This is primarily attributed to its common association with impact of another vehicle from the rear end. Surprisingly, the safety belt of a car does not offer any protection in preventing a whiplash injury.
The prognosis of a whiplash injury, depends on

  • extent of damage to the supporting soft tissues of neck.
  • continued injury to the nerves and spinal cord due to the resulting instability of the neck.

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The prosecuting attorney may focus entirely on the former point, to gain a substantial compensation for his client (the victim). However, it is the latter point, regarding negligence of the affected person, which is responsible for grave outcomes associated with whiplash injuries. Thus, there are 2 entirely different perspectives towards looking at the impact of a whiplash injury, depending on the category to which one belongs, for example victim or culprit.

Whiplash Attorney: Defense

The defending side of the claim always focuses on the negligence of the victim regarding the injury. Many times symptoms of whiplash injury occur in individuals who were perfectly normal immediately after the incident. This is particularly helpful to the defense attorney who tries to prove the falsity of the claim.

The vague and subjective nature of the symptoms makes it difficult to filter the genuine claims, especially in the absence of a documentary evidence like an MRI. This gives the benefit of doubt to the defense, since until now the mechanism and characteristics of whiplash injury were not satisfactorily proved.

The delay between the injury and the appearance of the symptoms also helps the defending attorney to disprove the association between the injury and the traumatic incident (generally vehicular accident).

Whiplash Attorney: Prosecutor

The documentation (papers for evidence) of the extent of damage from an injury is very important in this perspective. Hence, a complete medical examination by a health professional, is imperative after a road accident, even when a person does not feel he is injured.

This not only disproves any plea towards negligence by the victim towards his injury, but also establishes a baseline to prove the fact that the extensive nature of the injury itself was responsible for the damage.

Follow up visit for higher investigations further highlights the concern of the victim towards his well-being and becomes detrimental towards any negative tactics of the defense attorney.

Whiplash Injury Compensation

A whiplash injury claim can be made up to 3 years from the date of injury. There are 2 ways to apply for a whiplash injury claim, either through a solicitor (whiplash attorney) or directly to the insurance company. The amount of compensation is variable depending on the circumstances of injury as well as the economic (loss of earnings or absence from work) and emotional losses (pain, suffering, and so on). However, if one has taken insurance benefits for this injury, the right to reapply for additional compensation in the future is forfeited as per the insurance documentation.

Conclusion

With the revolution of information technology, people are becoming increasingly aware of common as well as rare diseases. Though, this helps to seek early treatment, it also helps people feign diseases for compensations and benefits. Evaluation of both sides of the claim are always essential to make sure it reaches the truly deserving candidates.

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About Dr Gauresh (69 Articles)
An orthopedic surgeon trained in JJ Group of Hospitals and Grant Medical College. I have worked in this field for the past 3 years and have significant clinical experience to guide students and patients on any topic in orthopedics.

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