Can Pre-Existing Injuries Affect A Whiplash Claim?

Have you suffered from whiplash injuries after a road traffic accident? Was the accident caused by someone else’s negligence? If so, you may be able to claim compensation. This is even if you already suffered from injuries that were affected by your accident. Our guide on claiming for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition will help point you in the right direction to get the compensation you deserve.  

Can pre-existing injuries affect a whiplash claim guide

Can pre-existing injuries affect a whiplash claim guide?

When you suffer from whiplash as the result of a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence, it can be frustrating, inconvenient and painful. Whiplash injuries often affect the shoulders and the back. As a result, you may notice that your range of motion in these areas is limited. But when you’re suffering from these injuries on top of a pre-existing condition, they can have a real impact on your quality of life. However, you may be able to claim personal injury compensation.

This guide will look at the process of claiming compensation for whiplash injuries you’ve sustained alongside a pre-existing medical condition. Read on for more information about making a claim of this type. However, if you have any further questions or would like to start a claim today, just contact us by:  

  • Telephone on 0161 696 9685
  • Using the live chat at the bottom of the screen.
  • Our contact us page, where you can request an email or a phone call from our team members.

Select A Section

  1. A Guide On Claiming For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions
  2. Calculating Compensation For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions
  3. Types Of Special Damages
  4. What Is A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions?
  5. Could Whiplash Make An Existing Condition Worse?
  6. Could I Claim If The Accident Only Aggravated A Pre-Existing Condition?
  7. The Eggshell Rule And Claiming For Whiplash
  8. What Are Aggravated Injury Settlements?
  9. Who Is Liable For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions?
  10. Make A No Win No Fee Claim For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions
  11. Get Advice On Making A Whiplash Injury Claim
  12. Related Whiplash Claim Guides
  13. Whiplash Injury Claim FAQs

 

A Guide On Claiming For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions

In this guide, we will look at the process of claiming compensation for whiplash injuries that have exacerbated a pre-existing condition. We also provide guides on general claims for whiplash and personal injury claims involving pre-existing conditions

We will go over what kind of personal injury compensation you could be entitled to. You may be wondering how this amount will be calculated; we will explain this to you. 

Furthermore, we will look at how a whiplash injury may be affected by a pre-existing condition. In doing so, we will look at the “eggshell rule” and how this applies when valuing personal injury claims involving pre-existing conditions. 

Importantly there has been a reform to how claimants claim for whiplash. Please note for road traffic incidents affecting drivers and passengers, as of 31st May 2021 for claims valued with injuries below £5000 plus financial losses you must make your claim in a different way. Also, injury tariffs have changed.

If you’re eligible to claim, you may be able to do so with a No Win No Fee solicitor. In this guide, we will look at what No Win No Fee agreements. We will also examine the benefits that they can offer claimants. This guide will conclude by providing you with some resources about claiming for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition. 

Calculating Compensation For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions

The amount of compensation you could be entitled to claim for a whiplash injury depends on the nature and severity of the injury. The value of your claim will be based on the Judicial College guidelines. These are guideline brackets for compensation amounts for a variety of injuries.

You can see in the table below what the guideline compensation brackets are for some types of injuries. These are injuries that might be expected from an injury. This could help you to get a rough idea of how much money could be involved in the physical injury aspect of your compensation claim.

Edit
Injury Compensation
Severe neck injury (i) In the region of £139,210
Moderate neck injury (i) £23,460 to £36,120
Minor neck injury (i) £4,080 to £7,410
Severe shoulder injuries £18,020 to £45,070
Serious shoulder injuries £11,980 to £18,020

As we have mentioned above if you are a driver or passenger in a road accident on/after the 31st May 2021 and your injuries fall short of £5000 plus specials damages the JCG would no longer apply. Please refer to The Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021 for a breakdown of whiplash tariffs.

If you’d like to start your claim for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today. Or for more information on what can be included in a claim, read on to the next section.

Types Of Special Damages

In addition to the compensation you could get for suffering a whiplash injury, you could also be compensated for financial losses you suffer from as a result of the injury. This is referred to as special damages. 

Special damages can include things such as medical bills and loss of earnings if you’ve had to take time off work because of your injuries. In order for expenses to be included in your claim, you must be able to provide evidence. This can be in the form of bills or receipts. 

If you have had to pay for transport to and from any medical appointments, these could be included in your claim. Alternatively, you may still be able to drive, but you have to attend hospital appointments. In this case, you can claim for the costs of parking and fuel associated with these visits.  

The special damages that we have listed above are by no means exhaustive. If you’ve experienced a financial loss or expense because of your injuries, even if it’s not one we’ve mentioned, get in touch with us today.

What Is A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions?

Whiplash is a type of injury that can be sustained in road accidents. It is caused when the neck is suddenly rocked forwards and backwards in the seat by the force of an impact. This can be caused by rear-end car accidents

The sudden movement of the body and the head puts strain on the soft tissues in the neck, like the tendons and ligaments. Minor instances of an injury like this can recover within a few weeks. However, more serious instances of whiplash may take longer to heal. You can learn more about the causes, effects, and treatments of whiplash injuries on the NHS website.

In addition, when a pre-existing health issue is present, such as the lasting effects of a previous injury or the symptoms of another illness, the effects of whiplash could be much more severe. A pre-existing injury could make the victim more vulnerable to suffering harm as a result of whiplash. Alternatively, the whiplash could severely exacerbate the effects of a pre-existing condition.

If you’d like to start a claim for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition, why not get in touch with our team today? Our helpful and friendly advisors are on hand to offer you free legal advice about claiming.

Could Whiplash Make An Existing Condition Worse?

There are a number of different health conditions that could be made worse by suffering from a whiplash injury. These include things like:

  • Arthritis
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Osteoporosis
  • Musculoskeletal problems in the neck area
  • Mental health problems

Whiplash problems tend to affect the tendons and ligaments in the neck and shoulders. So it follows that if you have a pre-existing condition that affects any of these areas, it could be made worse by whiplash injuries. Furthermore, conditions like arthritis affect the cartilage in the joints, which cushions the bones as they move across one another. If you already suffer from arthritis, this could mean that whiplash-related injuries have a worse effect on you than they otherwise could do. 

A whiplash injury could cause the effects of these conditions to worsen. If you’ve had a pre-existing condition that was made worse by whiplash, this could be taken into account in your personal injury claim.

Could I Claim If The Accident Only Aggravated A Pre-Existing Condition?

If the effect of whiplash has aggravated a pre-existing health issue, then you could be entitled to make what is known as an “aggravated injury claim”. It is a personal injury claim that you make when a condition you already suffered from has been made worse. As with other personal injury claims, the accident needs to have been caused by third-party negligence.  

If the other party can be found responsible for the accident that caused the injury, then they could be liable for the compensation that can be awarded for the effects of an aggravated health condition. The fact that the other party’s actions or negligence led to the decline in your health could mean that you’re owed compensation.

It should be noted that, in some circumstances, it can be more difficult to claim compensation for a pre-existing condition that has been exacerbated where no new injuries have been sustained. This is because it can be more difficult to quantify the deterioration that you’ve experienced. As a result, medical evidence will play a big part in claims of this nature. 

The Eggshell Rule And Claiming For Whiplash

The eggshell rule is a principle in English law that allows people who’ve had a pre-existing condition exacerbated in an accident to claim for their injuries. It means that the responsible party is liable for all of the harm caused to a victim as a result of their actions. This is the case even if the level of damage caused to the injured person could not have been expected. It also establishes that the third party is unaware of the extent of the potential for causing harm is not a viable defence.

This doctrine gets its name from the hypothetical example of a victim who has an unusually fragile skull. Because of the victims’ condition, they are more likely to suffer serious harm from a head injury than others. However, no allowances would be made for the negligent party. This is despite the fact that they couldn’t have been expected to predict that the level of harm caused would be higher than in a typical case.

What Are Aggravated Injury Settlements?

An aggravated injury settlement is the compensation you could be paid if your injuries have aggravated a pre-existing health condition. Much like compensation for a new injury, it will compensate you for the harm caused to you when an accident makes a pre-existing condition worse. 

Many people mistakenly assume that you need to have been involved in a really serious accident that resulted in a severe exacerbation of your previous injuries in order to be able to claim. However, this isn’t the case. Any exacerbation of a pre-existing condition that has impacted your quality of life could be grounds for a claim. 

If you’ve been involved in an accident and sustained whiplash injuries that have aggravated a pre-existing medical condition, it’s recommended that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. This means that you’ll be more likely to get the treatment you need. This could prevent your condition from worsening in a way that impacts your quality of life. 

It will also provide evidence that your condition was made worse by the ordeal you went through. It’s important to note that not all exacerbations of a pre-existing condition will be felt immediately after an accident. Because of this, it’s important that you see your doctor if you ever feel your condition has worsened or been affected by an accident. You should do this even if the pain and discomfort occur a few weeks down the line.

Who Is Liable For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions?

There are a lot of similarities between claiming for a new injury caused by third party negligence and claiming for a condition that’s been exacerbated. In both cases, you will need to show that those who had some responsibility for your health caused the accident through negligence and therefore your injuries or exasperation of an injury could have been avoided. 

Some whiplash injuries are caused by road traffic accidents. A driver could be liable for the injury caused by the accident if you can prove they have been speeding, driving under the influence, driving a car that was unsafe to take onto the road, or in some other way violating the regulations set out in the Highway Code.

Slips, trips and falls can also cause whiplash. You may suffer a slip, trip or fall while at work as the result of a breach of duty of care. For instance, perhaps you were at work and you slipped and fell because of a loose floor tile. In this scenario, you may be able to claim if whiplash has exacerbated a pre-existing condition. 

Similarly, a slip, trip or fall in a public place could result from a breach of duty of care. For instance, you may have tripped on a loose wire in a supermarket, causing you to fall and suffer from whiplash. If these whiplash injuries cause a pre-existing condition to be exacerbated, this could be included in your claim. 

If you’d like to know more about how to claim with a pre-existing condition, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Otherwise, read on to find out more about No Win No Fee agreements. We explain how they could help you fund a solicitor for a whiplash claim with a pre-existing condition.

Make A No Win No Fee Claim For A Whiplash Injury With Pre-Existing Conditions

Sometimes when you pursue compensation through a solicitor, you’re expected to pay their legal fees upfront and while they work on your claim. However, this may not be the best option for all claimants. Not everyone will have the money needed to cover these costs. Furthermore, not everyone will wish to take on the financial risk that claiming in this way could entail.

When you fund a solicitor with a No Win No Fee agreement, you don’t have to worry about paying any upfront fees to your solicitor. In fact, you don’t need to worry about paying them a thing while your claim is ongoing. 

The only time you’ll be asked to pay them anything is if you win your claim. Then, a success fee will be taken from your compensation to cover your solicitor’s costs. This fee is legally capped. And means that you’ll always receive the majority of the compensation that’s awarded to you.

Get Advice On Making A Whiplash Injury Claim

We hope that this guide has provided help and guidance around making a claim for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition. You may want to get your claim started today. If so, you can get in touch with us through the channels below. 

  • Telephone number – 0161 696 9685
  • The live chat at the bottom of the screen.
  • Our contact us page, where you can request an email or a phone call from our team members.

Related Whiplash Claim Guides

What is the minimum whiplash compensation payout?

Whiplash compensation calculator.

Can I claim for anxiety after a car accident? 

Think.gov.uk- The Government’s road safety campaign

Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents  

When should I visit A&E?

Statistics

According to the Association of British Insurers, eight in every ten personal injury claims after road traffic accidents are for whiplash. Between 2006 and 2013, there was an increase in road-related personal injury claims of 60%. In 2011, the number of claims rose despite an overall drop in the number of injuries sustained in road traffic accidents. 

The number of casualties sustained in road traffic accidents has been on the decline for several years. According to the Reported Road Casualties in Great Britain: 2019 annual report, in 2019, there were 153,158 casualties of all severities reported. This is a decrease of 31% since 2009 when there were 222,146 reported. 

Different road users face different levels of risk when it comes to road traffic accidents. For instance, young drivers aged 17-24 are more likely to be injured in a road traffic accident than older drivers. However, it does not follow that younger drivers are always more vulnerable to injury than older drivers. Statistics show that drivers over the age of 80 are more likely to be injured than their 50-74-year-old counterparts.

Source: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-34925933

Whiplash Injury Claim FAQs

How long do whiplash injury claims take to make?

The amount of time a personal injury claim takes depends on your circumstances. If the claim is clear and straightforward, then the claim could be resolved in the space of several months. If the claim is disputed or there is ambiguity regarding the circumstances of the accident and your injury, it could take longer.

How long do you have to claim for a whiplash injury?

There is a time limit of three years to making a personal injury claim. This generally begins from either the date of the accident. Or from the date you became aware that your injuries were related to negligence. There are some exceptions to this rule, however. Get in touch with our team today to find out more. 

How does the whiplash injury claim review affect your claim?

The whiplash injury claim review means that any claims worth less than £5,000 for injuries sustained in an RTA must be made through a new claims portal. This excludes minors, pedestrians, cyclists and motorbike riders. The settlements awarded to whiplash injuries will also be affected. You can read the new settlement awards for whiplash injuries in the Whiplash Injury Regulations 2021.

Is there a cap on whiplash injury claims?

Since May 31st 2021, the whiplash injury claims review has affected the way people claim for whiplash injuries for road traffic accidents. However, if your whiplash injuries have exacerbated a pre-existing health condition, this could affect the amount. Get in touch with our team today to find out more.

Why could a whiplash injury claim be rejected?

A claim for whiplash injury compensation could be refused. This is if there is insufficient evidence that the accident was the fault of a third party. It could also be rejected if there isn’t sufficient evidence that you were injured. You can learn more about the issues that could cause a whiplash claim to be rejected by reading our guide. 

Thank you for reading our guide on claiming for a whiplash injury with a pre-existing condition.

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