Whiplash Compensation Claims

Photo by: Nevit DilmenWhiplash compensation claims are one of the most common personal injury claims made by people involved in road traffic accidents. A whiplash injury is caused by a sudden forwards and backwards movement which causes the soft tissue of the spine to stretch. Whiplash can also include damage to the neck muscles and ligaments, as well as pain to the back and shoulders.

Although most commonly caused by road traffic accidents, a whiplash injury can also be caused by many other types of accident, including slips and trips. Whatever type of accident you have had, if you have suffered whiplash as a result of the accident, and the accident was not your fault, you may be entitled to make a whiplash compensation claim. It is not uncommon for the symptoms of a whiplash injury to go undetected for several hours, or in some cases several days after an accident.

The severity and recovery time for a whiplash injury can vary significantly from person to person. In some cases a person may make a complete recovery from a whiplash injury within a couple of weeks, whereas some people may take several months or years to recover from a whiplash injury. In extreme cases a whiplash injury can even cause permanent damage.

What exactly is whiplash?

Whiplash occurs when the head is snapped back and forth suddenly and violently, a movement which takes place when two cars impact into one another, or when one car has to brake suddenly. A road traffic accident which seems fairly ‘minor’, one taking place at a low speed, for example, can still result in whiplash, and can therefore still impact hugely upon a person’s life. The initial symptoms of whiplash may not become apparent in the immediate aftermath of an accident, often taking hours and sometimes even days to make themselves felt, and this underlines the importance of seeking medical attention at the earliest possible opportunity.

Symptoms of whiplash

When the symptoms begin to appear, they generally include the following:

  • Pain and stiffness around the neck, back, arms jaw and shoulders
  • Numbness, pins and needles or a burning sensation in the arms and legs
  • Headaches and dizziness
  • Tinnitus
  • Blurred vision
  • Vomiting or nausea

Sometimes, whiplash can be treated fairly quickly and won’t have any long term effect but often it can be very serious and have a drastic effect upon a victim’s life for many years following the accident. The long term symptoms of whiplash can take the form of:

  • Insomnia
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Depression
  • Fatigue
  • Memory loss
  • Mood swings

How will I get compensation for my whiplash injury?

If you want to make a successful accident claim for compensation following an accident which has resulted in whiplash, you’ll have to show two things. Initially, you’ll have to demonstrate that you are, in fact, suffering from whiplash. More often than not, this happens during a road traffic accident, when either an impact or a sudden braking can cause the movement which brings about whiplash.

There are other scenarios which can lead to whiplash, however, such as a fall, sporting injury or mishap on a fairground ride. The symptoms of whiplash may take some time to become apparent, often several hours and sometimes as long as a few days and for this reason it’s vitally important that you seek medical advice as soon as possible. A doctor will analyse your symptoms and, if they deem it necessary, will undertake MRI scans or x-rays to determine the extent of any damage. Not only is medical help imperative for your well being, but it will also prove vital in building a successful case for compensation. Once a doctor has confirmed that you are suffering from whiplash, as well as eliminating the possibility of a dislocation or fracture to the spine, the chance of pursuing a successful claim will hinge upon demonstrating that the accident which caused it was caused by the negligence of another party. To this end, it’s important to note down as many of the details of your accident as soon as you can, while they are all still fresh in your mind, and why any extra information you can provide will prove to be incredibly important. Information which our expert injury lawyers will hope to be able to call upon includes:

  • Medical records
  • Receipts
  • Witness statements
  • Insurance details of all parties or, if these are not available, names, addresses and relevant number plates

Using this, we’ll build a case on your behalf, acting on a no win no fee basis. This means that you won’t need to pay a single penny up front and, in the event of losing your case, you won’t be liable for the fees, charges or expenses of the other side.

How much compensation for whiplash?

The amount of compensation you may receive for your whiplash injury claim will depend largely on the severity of the injury. Our specialist whiplash lawyers will assess your injury based on medical records to determine how long the neck injury has lasted, or in cases where the injury is ongoing, how long it is likely to take for you to recover from the injury. Whiplash compensation amounts will also vary depending on the impact the injury has on your day-to-day life.

In very general terms, whiplash compensation can be:

Minor Whiplash – £1,000 to £6,400
Moderate Whiplash – £6,400 to £31,000
Severe Whiplash – £31,000 to £106,000

However, it is impossible to give an accurate estimate of how much your whiplash compensation could come to without knowing the details of the accident and injury. There may also be additional factors to consider, such as any losses (including lost earnings, travel expenses and medical expenses) that will affect the total value of your whiplash claim.

How to start a whiplash compensation claim

If you have suffered a whiplash injury as a result of an accident which was not your fault, you may be entitled to make a no win no fee whiplash accident claim. Call us FREE on 0800 234 6438, or fill in the form at the top of this page, and we can provide you with free legal advice from a personal injury solicitor who will be able to discuss your whiplash injury and help you through the process of making a claim. All of our solicitors work on a no win no fee basis and can help you make a claim without taking a financial risk.