As whiplash cases rise, such as in New York, you need to be aware of what such an accident can mean for you financially and health-wise.
According to the National Highway Traffic Administration, about 5 to 6 million road accidents occur annually. Out of these, 3 million Americans report sustaining whiplash injuries, with a tenth of the number going on to become completely disabled.
As whiplash cases rise, especially in pivotal states, such as New York, you need to be aware of what such an accident can mean for you financially and health-wise. Here are four facts about whiplash car accident settlements to keep in mind.
Diagnosing Whiplash is Complicated
A whiplash injury commonly results from the rear-end collision of an automobile. The forceful impact jerks your neck rapidly back and forth, causing a strain. This can result in stiffness, swelling, and pain around your neck. The symptoms of a whiplash injury may not be immediately clear after an accident due to shock. They can also vary, depending on the extent of the accident.
Insurance providers can reduce or even delay your compensation if the signs of whiplash are not evident. They can also challenge your doctor’s diagnosis in court, owing to the increase in fraudulent whiplash injury claims.
Medical Treatment is Key to your Recovery and Settlement
After a whiplash car accident, your symptoms may not be severe to warrant an instant checkup. Initial signs can include fatigue, dizziness, arm numbness, and headaches. Without immediate treatment, a whiplash injury can lead to permanent conditions, such as impaired vision, movement problems, and tinnitus (ringing ears).
It pays to see a doctor once you’ve been involved in a car accident to determine whether you’re okay or not. You can also get the medical documentation to support your compensation claim, especially if your signs are evident.
Speeding Isn’t the Major Cause of Whiplash Accidents
Very few whiplash injuries are a result of speeding. Most car collisions leading to whiplash injuries occur from low speeds of 5 to 10 mph. It can also happen when you’ve stopped but are still inside your car, and another vehicle bumps into yours. The best way to avoid whiplash-related injuries is to ensure you wear a seat belt.
Settlement Amount Depends on the Extent of Injury
With the high number of whiplash accident cases, insurance firms are more cautious when settling claims. The actual value you’ll receive as compensation depends on several factors. Among them are lost wages, medical bills, out-of-pocket costs, and the level of physical or emotional distress caused.
Long-term whiplash injury victims have to wait for their compensation much longer, as a full prognosis can take weeks or even months to determine. However, you stand to receive a higher amount later than if you settled too early.
Whiplash Car Accident Settlement Lawyers
It is much harder to get the full compensation after a whiplash accident today than ever before. If the insurance firm doesn’t outrightly deny your claim, you may end up receiving a lowball offer at best.
With a qualified attorney by your side, preferably one with experience in personal injury laws, you have a shot at settling for the highest amount possible. For the drivers in New York who would like competent car accident attorneys on their team, contact the Apicella & Schlesinger Law Firm for professional legal services.