Whiplash is a common car accident injury. The majority of whiplash injuries result from rear-end collisions, and the medical term for the condition is cervical acceleration-deceleration syndrome.
Whiplash and other serious injury symptoms can take time to show up, so it is best to seek immediate medical treatment after any type of car accident. Whether you travel by ambulance or another means to get help, follow the physician’s orders and do not deviate. If you choose to ignore them, the injury could worsen, or the insurance company might assert that you are exaggerating what happened.
This is also a bad time to share photos of yourself online or be active on social media. If an adjuster or opposing legal counsel finds out that you were out dancing when you claimed you were seriously injured, your claim could be denied.
What Are the Symptoms of Whiplash?
Many whiplash cases happen when vehicles are only moving at 14 miles per hour or less, but whiplash can also happen at higher speeds These injuries can happen when a vehicle is rear ended and the driver’s body is thrown forward but the head does not. When rapid deceleration occurs, this can also result in the head being thrown forward and then backward, causing serious damage.
Car accidents are not the only events that can cause whiplash. Other causes of whiplash include physical assault or abuse, sports injuries, slips and falls, and repetitive stress.
Whiplash can be mild to severe, and it is categorized from Grades 0 to 4; a Grade 4 is the most serious. The recovery time averages three months, and during that time, the medical expenses, pain, and lost time from work can be overwhelming or traumatic.
Whiplash injuries can present with a variety of symptoms. The most common signs of whiplash include:
- Neck pain and stiffness.
- Shoulder or back pain.
- Decreased range of motion.
- Headaches and dizziness.
- A burning or prickling feeling in the neck.
Those who have whiplash can also experience:
- Anxiety or depression.
- Problems concentrating and sleeping.
- Memory loss.
Proving an Accident Caused Whiplash
One of the most important steps in proving these kinds of cases is the gathering of medical documentation. This would include a physician’s diagnosis and treatment plan, prognosis, and medical imaging studies and tests. You will also want to keep your related medical expenses in order, as this can also serve as evidence.
Information about the accident can also help, and that is why it is important to get a copy of the police report. Photos of the accident aftermath can make it obvious that one vehicle rear ended the other, so it can help to have photos of the other vehicle, license plates, skid marks, weather conditions, and anything else that clearly shows how things played out.
If you have witnesses, they might be able to share valuable information that could help with your claim. One might have seen the allegedly at-fault party speeding or texting while driving, for example. Checking the accident scene for witnesses is always a good idea. They might even be willing to speak with law enforcement officers or tell a court what they saw.
How Do Ohio Auto Accident Laws Apply to Claims?
Like other states, Ohio enforces a statute of limitations for personal injury lawsuits that result from motor vehicle crashes. The time limit for filing a personal injury claim is two years from the accident date.
Before a lawsuit is initiated, you should know that Ohio is a fault insurance state. This means that the at-fault party, or their insurance, will be responsible for covering the damages. A claims adjuster may offer you a settlement that might cover your expenses. Before agreeing to settle, it might be best to consult with a car accident attorney. Insurance companies have been known to make low offers, and accident survivors are then left to fend for themselves.
Ohio also has a comparative negligence law. This means you may be able to recover damages from a party who is determined to be more responsible for the accident than you. However, if the court finds that you were partially at fault for what happened, your damages will be reduced accordingly. However, if you are more than 50 percent at fault, you will not be eligible to collect damages.
Loveland Car Accident Lawyers at the Wolterman Law Office Represent Clients With Whiplash Injuries
Whiplash can lead to debilitating pain, discomfort, and ongoing expenses can be significant enough to disrupt your life. To see if you may be entitled to compensation, contact one of our experienced Loveland car accident lawyers at the Wolterman Law Office. Call us at 513-964-2589 or complete our online form today to schedule a free consultation. Located in Loveland, Ohio, we serve clients in Hamilton County, Fairfield, Norwood, and Forest Park.