New York City Personal Injury Law Blog
Injury Claims for Whiplash after an Accident
“Whiplash” is the common term for the injury and subsequent medical problem that is caused when the neck moves back-and-forth abruptly. This commonly occurs in car accidents. It is likely that you have seen whiplash portrayed in movies and television, usually with the plaintiff’s attorney fitting his client with a neck brace for a fake injury.
In reality, whiplash can be extremely disruptive, not to mention painful. In some situations, filing a lawsuit for a whiplash injury could be the best option you have.
You need Immediate Medical Treatment to Prove Whiplash
If you have been in an automobile accident, you need to seek medical treatment immediately if you feel even the slightest discomfort or pain. Many conditions such as soft tissue injuries including whiplash and back strain do not become symptomatic immediately after an accident.
When they are presented with the facts surrounding an accident, treating physicians will know to look for signs of whiplash that a layperson may not notice. It is essential to make sure that the first disclosure of medical information in your personal injury case comes from a physician. Even in the best of circumstances, whiplash cases are looked at with suspicion by insurance adjusters. You need to remember not to make any statement about how you feel at the scene of the accident and allow your medical records to tell the story.
File Your Claim Quickly
If you have a case of whiplash that is documented medically, make sure that you do not delay in starting the claim process. If yours is a no-fault state, you need to notify your insurance provider.
If your state that allows suits for personal injuries after an auto accident, you will need to inform the offending driver’s insurance company of your injuries and also notify them that you intend to file a claim. “Sandbagging” does not make any sense. Your injuries may worsen or they may get better. You need to notify a prospective payee of your claim as soon as possible, so that you can be reimbursed for your medical bills sooner.
Make a Record of Your Medical Expenses
If you are making a claim with an insurance provider, make sure that you document all of the expenses you incur for treatment and rehabilitation. You should include economic damages such as mileage, medical bills, prescription costs, lost wages and insurance co-pays. Keep in mind that any out-of-pocket expenditure could be a potential reimbursable cost.
For every dollar they pay out, insurance adjusters require proof of loss, and they appreciate it if you have proper documentation for any and all expenses. Because you have complete records that help make their jobs a lot easier, you may find that they pay out on your claim a whole lot sooner.
A Lawsuit May be Required
It is not a guarantee that an insurance adjuster will pay out on your claim. It is also not guaranteed that the person responsible for the accident will even have insurance. It may be necessary for you to file a personal injury lawsuit to be able to collect your damages.
In no-fault states, pursuing a lawsuit for a whiplash injury can be difficult due to threshold injury and damage requirements.
If you live in a no-fault state, you may be able to file a lawsuit as a matter of right. If your case goes to court, it may be possible for you to recover non-economic damages such as pain and suffering as well as economic damages. You can get much-needed advice on the laws of your jurisdiction and whether your case is strong from an experienced personal injury lawyer from your area.
In a large number of automobile accidents, whiplash injuries are often derided as “fake claims”. However, remember that these are legitimate soft tissue injuries. When your neck extends and retracts suddenly and violently, it can cause serious physical problems. Your ability to function on a daily basis can also be seriously impaired. When you follow a few simple steps, you can increase your chances of getting fair compensation for your injuries.
If you or a loved one is involved in a vehicle accident and sustained a whiplash injury in New York, you need to seek the legal expertise of a reputed and proven law firm such as Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff, & Wolff of RMFW Law at 212 697 9280.
Give us a call, we know how to win cases!