Whiplash injuries can have a huge effect on your day-to-day life. If you’ve suffered whiplash in a car accident, our solicitors may be able to help you claim compensation.
A common injury for people who have been involved in road traffic accidents, whiplash usually happens because your body is held in place by your seatbelt, but your head isn’t. So when there's an impact, your head is thrown suddenly backwards, forwards or sideways, which can put a huge amount of strain on the muscles and ligaments of the neck.
Depending on the severity of the injury and the nature of your job, you may need to take time off work to recover, potentially resulting in loss of earnings. This is one of the many reasons people who have suffered whiplash decide to consult a lawyer.
Whiplash injuries can be very painful, and the symptoms may not develop until several hours after the injury. They usually include stiffness, soreness and tenderness when moving your head. You may also suffer headaches and pain in other parts of the body, such as the back, shoulders and arms.
What Are The Different Grades Of Whiplash?
Whiplash injuries can be categorised into grades depending on the severity of the symptoms:
- Grade 1: Neck pain, but no other physical signs.
- Grade 2: Neck and musculoskeletal pain.
- Grade 3: Neck pain and neurological signs.
- Grade 4: Neck pain and fracture or dislocation.
At grade one, everyday tasks can be difficult to perform – even when moving slowly and carefully, walking can be very uncomfortable. At higher grades, the injuries can be incapacitating.
Recovering From Whiplash Injuries
Recovery time for whiplash varies widely. It usually takes at least a few weeks for the pain to subside completely, but for some people it persists for six months or more . In extreme cases, the damage can be permanent, which can have lifelong consequences – particularly if you have a physically demanding job.
It’s sensible for any whiplash injury to be individually assessed by your GP, who may recommend physiotherapy or strong painkillers.
If you claim compensation for whiplash, you will need to have an independent medical examination as part of the process, and we will arrange this for you. Find out more about what this will involve.
Claiming Compensation For Whiplash
If you’ve suffered whiplash in a car accident, you may be able to claim against the person responsible. We’ll instruct an experienced medical expert to examine you to verify that you’ve suffered a whiplash injury. The expert's findings will be written up into a medical report, which can be used to support your claim.
You cannot normally make a whiplash claim if the accident was judged to be completely your fault, but if you were only partly to blame a claim may still be possible. Due to the nature of whiplash, we don’t recommend settling a personal injury claim until you’ve made a full recovery, as the full extent of your injuries – and by extension the compensation you're due – might not be known.
If you’ve suffered whiplash as a result of an accident, find out more about the whiplash claim process, or how much compensation you can expect to claim. Alternatively, contact us today on 0800 056 4110 for a free initial consultation about your case.