Whiplash injury claims….What Compensation Can I Expect?
Once it has been determined that your injury is actually whiplash, the next logical thought is often wondering how to calculate your whiplash payout and whiplash injury claim. Whiplash is a serious condition that is believed to have been documented for the first time in 1928. Prior to that time, it existed, but did not have a medical name, and instead was commonly referred to as “railway spine”. Although the word “whiplash” is associated with some negative connotations, it is certainly a very real medical condition that has resulted in extensive pain, suffering and loss of income for many patients.
There are an enormous amount of whiplash injury claims that are made each year. Many of these victims experience a significant amount of pain, trauma, and lost income. Some of them will experience so much pain and suffering that specific psychological disorders will be developed.
The courts will require a medical report that substantiates the extent of your whiplash injuries and the injuries that were actually received, as well as proof of any emotional damage that you experienced. Any whiplash injury claims are also compared to previous rulings to establish approximate financial similarities. These are all classified under General Damages, and are determined by the actual pain and suffering that is experienced and can be documented.
Special whiplash injury claims damages
Special Damages are another part of your whiplash injury claim. This is a way to compensate you for any unique losses that you have been forced to undergo. Specific examples of this aspect of whiplash injury claims include a loss of earnings due to your accident, if you were forced to compensate someone to care for you during your recovery, and if you had to pay any expenses related to your medical or psychological treatment. This part of your claim is generally more of a fixed dollar amount, and will require receipts as well as written documentation whenever possible.
Legalities You Should Know about whiplash injury claims
You have only 3 years from the date of your injury to file for compensation. However, the longer you wait, the higher your risk of not receiving the dollar amount for your injury that you are entitled to.
Shortly after your injury, you will also be forced to choose whether you will be settling directly with the insurance company, or if you will be making the safer choice of contracting with an attorney. If you choose to forgo a relationship with an attorney, you should plan to take an adequate amount of time to thoroughly understand your paperwork. It is a common practice for insurance companies to send monthly payments, in lieu of a lump sum payment that might be more beneficial for you, and this will be documented in your paperwork. It is not unusual for insurance companies to attempt to minimize their payout.
As with most legal situations, it is most appropriate to never sign anything without having it evaluated by an attorney. You should make sure that your attorney of choice has experience in the specific field of whiplash injury claims, and that he or she knows what they’re doing. Adequate legal representation at this difficult time is vital to protecting your rights.