If I Have A Car Accident And Get Whiplash, Can I Sue?
We’ve all seen the television shows where a less-than-reputable lawyer has their client wear a neck brace as they try to get settlement money from another driver that hit their client. Whiplash claims are the most sought after in a court of law and are becoming one of the hardest injuries to prove to receive compensation. Let’s take a closer look at what whiplash is, what compensation you can seek, and the process you must follow to ensure a successful claim.
What Is Whiplash?
Whiplash is a term used to describe an injury to the body that caused back-and-forth flexion of the neck. This type of injury is very common in car accidents and can result in a very painful injury that can disrupt a client’s lifestyle. To seek compensation for this type of injury you will need to hire a skilled personal injury lawyer to fight your case.
What Should You Do Following The Accident?
When it comes to receiving compensation for whiplash due to a vehicle accident, you should seek to get your claim underway as soon as possible. This will allow you to assess whether or not an insurance company is going to pay for your injuries.
Always Seek Immediate Medical Attention
In order to prove that you are indeed injured as a result of the car accident, you should seek medical attention at the first signs of an injury. It’s important to realize that symptoms of whiplash do not always occur right after the accident. Some common symptoms include back strain, neck pain, and soft tissue injuries. Your physician will know what signs to look for in the event that whiplash occurred. You should have your medical visit on file so that you can have the records pulled to support your case later down the road.
Attempt To File A Claim As Soon As Possible
You should attempt to file an insurance claim as soon as possible. If you currently live in a no-fault state, you need to notify your own insurance provider of your injury. If you live in a state that allows a fault to be determined, you should contact the other driver’s insurance company. The best way to do this is in writing. You should include a description of your injuries as noted by your doctor and your intent to file an insurance claim.
Keep Track Of Your Medical Expenses
Any expenses that you personally incur that are involved with your treatment and rehabilitation should be well documented. Don’t forget to include your mileage, lost wages, prescription copays, and medical bills. Basically, any expenses that you incur out of pocket can be reimbursed by the insurance company. It’s vital to note that insurance companies will require documentation for every dollar they pay out for a claim. By keeping track of these expenses you can potentially help to expedite the payout process from the insurance provider.
What Happens When The Insurance Company Won’t Pay?
In some cases, you may find that an insurance adjuster refuses to pay out for your claim. This is also possible in the event that the other driver did not have an adequate level of insurance to pay for the cost of your whiplash injuries. In all these cases, you should contact an experienced personal injury law firm right away to file a lawsuit against the offending party.
There are twelve states in America that honor the no-fault accident law, with New York being one of them. In these states, it can be difficult to get reimbursed for whiplash injuries. The damage requirements and threshold injury can apply major restricting factors on your ability to seek compensation. In addition, in no-fault states, there is no chance of getting non-economic damages from an insurance company.
The remaining 38 states all fall under the auto accident fault laws. In these states, injured parties can sue an insurance company or the driver of the vehicle that caused their injuries to occur. The injured party can sue for non-economic damages of pain and suffering in addition to the economic damages incurred in these states. We always advise that you speak to an experienced personal injury attorney about the local legislation in your area when it comes to filling a lawsuit.