The Complexity of Soft Tissue Claims
What is a Soft Tissue Injury?
A soft tissue injury is damage to the muscles, ligaments and tendons that can be found throughout the body. As a Clearwater personal injury attorney handling automobile and motorcycle accident victim claims throughout the Tampa bay area, a majority of the soft tissue injuries we come across involve muscle and ligament damage in the cervical (neck) spinal columns. Soft tissue injuries involving the cervical spine are often characterized as “whiplash." For more information on whiplash and how whiplash can result in severe and permanent injuries including a traumatic brain injury, please take a look at the blog section of my website
What Makes Soft Tissue Claims So Inherently Difficult?
What makes soft tissue cases so difficult for members of the plaintiff bar is the gauntlet of hurdles the insurance carriers will out forth in defending such claims. Soft tissue claims/cases often lack the financial incentive for a personal injury attorney as compared to a surgery case and the costs associated with advocating such claim can be cost prohibitive for many. Many personal injury law firms are simply volume shops where the goal is to simply settle the claim for whatever they can get without expending significant effort or costs into litigating the claim. Other firms either lack the ability or the desire to try cases and fail to inform the client of such at the outset of representation.
We have noted in recent years that resolving soft tissue automobile accident claims have grown increasingly difficult and the insurance industry in general is applying increased scrutiny to such claims. Keep in mind that the political spirit of tort reform purveyed by insurance carriers, their lobbyists and the Republican Party has resulted in an unfavorable jury pool in Florida. Due to the propaganda peddled by the insurance carriers a large percentage of the general public views soft tissue claims and automobile accident claims with a heavy dose of skepticism. Further, a large contingency of the general public views personal injury attorneys as greedy and their clients as charlatans looking to cash in on an exaggerated or embellished injury that is often difficult to prove. To make matters worse, the insurance carriers rely on a bevy of shameless physicians who have whored themselves out to the insurance industry in an effort to make a very comfortable living meeting with injury victims and producing reports minimizing their injuries Such physicians are retained by the insurance carriers to perform examinations known as independent medical examinations (IME’S) and compulsory medical examinations (CME’S) on injury claimants. The general opinion among members of the plaintiff bar is that these very physicians rarely offer an objective finding or report. Rather, they are paid by the applicable insurance carrier and understand that if they were to be honest and state the true extent of the claimant’s injuries they would not likely receive many more assignments.
When trying a soft tissue claim in Pinellas, Hillsborough Manatee, Sarasota or Pasco County, the defense lawyer retained by the insurance carrier will bring in a team of “experts" (biomechanical engineer, Spine Surgeon and others) who will state that it is impossible or highly unlikely that the property damage involved could have caused the injuries complained of. This is consistently seen in cases in which there is less than $2000.00 in property damage. The experts will often rely on junk science and paint their opinions towards the general political theme in this state and the opinions shared by many consumers that automobile accident soft tissue claims are often embellished and the victims are nothing more than malingerers. The insurance industry is well aware of how difficult they have made soft tissue claims and the general apathy may plaintiff personal injury attorneys, show towards such cases. Thus, the typical settlement offers seen on soft tissue claim, particularly those involving a minor impact are shockingly low.
What Should I Do If I was Involved In An Automobile Accident?
The trial attorneys at Dolman Law Group are well versed in handling soft tissue claims and actively litigate soft tissue automobile accident cases statewide. We are committed to pursuing these claims as far as reasonably necessary and have no fear in litigating a soft tissue injury claim against any insurance carrier. Every case is different and with that being said, some claims are not litigation worthy as a result of the high costs involved and the likelihood that the client will not net any additional funds after the costs involved in litigating such claim is recouped.
If you or a loved one, friend, colleague or acquaintance have suffered soft tissue injuries (i.e., Whiplash) as a result of an automobile accident or motorcycle accident, it is imperative that the victim consult with an attorney who is competent, aggressive and has a thorough understanding of the nuances involved in handling a soft tissue claim. Not all personal injury attorneys are alike and we believe our system utilized in handling and litigating soft tissue claims makes Dolman Law Group a superior choice. For a free consultation, call Dolman Law Group today at (727) 451-6900 or (941) 961-8841. For an immediate response, feel free to email me at: [email protected]
Dolman Law Group is a Clearwater based personal injury law serving the greater Tampa Bay Area. We have satellite offices in Bradenton and Melbourne and actively handle motorcycle injury and automobile injury claims statewide. We limit our practice to first and third party insurance claims relating to an automobile accident, motorcycle accident, traumatic brain injury, catastrophic injury and wrongful death.