Are soft-tissue injuries from car accident worth filing a claim for?

Asked over 1 year ago - Yarmouth, ME

I got rear ended, completely the other driver's fault. My car sustained $3400 in damage. I had a headache right after but waited until the next day to go to urgent care, with neck and jaw pain. No x-ray done, given flexeril, told it was a neck strain. I still ache in my jaws and neck, and am following up with my PCP. How can these injuries, if they persist, be proven? I don't want to file a frivolous claim, but if my jaw continues to hurt when eating or talking, and my neck continues to hurt constantly, I will seek out a PI lawyer. Just curious for now if these things are even worth pursuing in the first place.

Attorney answers (7)

  1. Anthony K Ferguson

    Pro

    Contributor Level 11

    5

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Your situation is not uncommon. These types of injuries are proven routinely. The fact that one of your treating doctors prescribed Flexeril tells me that the doctor could detect muscle spasms. This would be recorded in the medical records. You certainly are able to state the nature of your problems.

    You have yet to recover from your injuries or reach a medical end point. Don't make the mistake of attempting to finalize a claim before you have recovered or know the full extent of your injuries.

    Also be aware that if you do make and resolve the claim, you likely must repay whoever is now paying your accident related medical bills - probably your own auto insurer at this point.

  2. Jeffrey Mark Adams

    Contributor Level 20

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You cannot function without supportive structures, connective tissues or what is commonly referred to as "soft-tissue". The insurance industry and their lacky's have won this word game. Speak to qualified local counsel. Do not speak with the liability insurer. Good luck.

    Personal injury cases only; I'm good at it; you be the Judge! All information provided is for informational and... more
  3. Steven Mark Sweat

    Pro

    Contributor Level 19

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Yes. If you are having these types of symptoms, it could be a sign of something more serious than just "soft tissue" injuries (e.g. TMJ or any number of other things). You should retain an attorney and seek further, prompt medical evaluation and treatement.

    Nothing in this communication should be construed as creating an attorney client relationship. This is for... more
  4. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You should certainly get the medical treatment you require, and call a personal injury lawyer in your state to investigate a claim.

  5. Thomas J. Turner

    Contributor Level 10

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Acceleration/deceleration injuries like yours are the most common injuries incurred in collisions. They can be minor, or can be major sources of discomfort and disability. Most will heal within six months, but 15-20% become chronic and permanent. The injuries occur whin the violent forces generated by the colliding vehicles cause a person's head to accelerate very rapidly in one direction and then to recoil in the opposite direction, causing stretching and tearing of the muscles and soft connective tissue in the neck and shoulder girdle. The same mecahnism of injury causes post-concussion symptoms as well, such as headache, blurred/double vision, nausea, dizxziness, jaw pain, and short term memory problems. In my expderience, the injured people who are treated by chiropractic care or physical therapy. Go to a doctor right away, and then speak to a lawyer who specializes in personal injury. Do not try to deal with an insurance company yourself.

  6. Lars A. Lundeen

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Since the other party was at fault for causing the accident and you are having pain and suffering and inconvenience and other losses from this incident, why would you consider such a claim to be frivolous? Isn't your word about the injuries and the pain you feel true?

    A large majority of automobile related injuries are in the nature of soft tissue injuries. Not everyone breaks of bone, but many people experience problems which do not show up on an x-ray, CT scan or MRI. Often the types of injuries you describe persist for years or the entire lifetime of the accident victim. The sooner you involve a competent attorney and the appropriate doctors, the sooner you will be on track for a maximum medical recovery as well as a maximum legal recovery against the tortfeasor.

    You should obtain needed medical care and treatment immediately and follow the doctor's advice. Do not give any statement to the adverse party or insurance company nor grant them access to any medical records. Photograph the injuries and the damage done to any property. Contact a personal injury attorney in your area as soon as possible so that you can protect your rights. You may also find it helpful to review the Legal Guides I have published on Avvo.com dealing with many of the issues you are now facing. The Guides can be accessed through my profile page on Avvo.com.

    Legal Disclaimer:

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

    Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received.

    This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.
  7. Manuel Alzamora Juarez

    Contributor Level 20

    1

    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . if you were rear ended then your case is not frivolous. You need to complete your treatment. then, get a PI lawyer to help you. Whatever you do do not sign any releases until you speak to a lawyer. Best of luck.

    This answer is provided by California Accident Attorney Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., 510-206-4492. Abogado de... more

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