How Do I File a Claim for a Whiplash Injury in North Carolina?

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A woman holds her neck after a whiplash injury in a car accident.

If you have been involved in a car accident and have sustained injuries, it may benefit you to know that whiplash is one of the most frequently diagnosed injuries a car accident victim may sustain. As whiplash injuries may lead to significant economic losses related to loss of income, medical expenses, and more, it is vital that you receive just compensation for your injuries if you have sustained them due to another driver’s negligence. Unfortunately, many parties such as judges, juries, and insurance companies treat whiplash claims with suspicion, as they are incredibly common, and these injuries can be difficult to substantiate in some cases. Therefore, the steps you take following an accident are critical in preserving the integrity of your claim.

Tatum & Atkinson, the Heavy Hitters, will provide you with a case evaluation at no cost to you. Just call (800) 529-0804 or contact us online. With over 65 years of collective experience, the experienced car accident attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson can guide you through the legal personal injury claim process, give you an outline of what to expect and what your legal options are, and allow you to focus your time and energy on your healing while ensuring you get the greatest compensation possible for your injuries.

How Much Personal Injury Claim for Whiplash

A personal injury claim for whiplash settlement amount will be dependent on many factors such as:

  • The extent of the property damages
  • Whether a permanent disability was incurred
  • The total amount of lost wages
  • Whether there were severe or only minor soft tissue injuries
  • Whether or not physical therapy is needed and for how long

Your personal injury lawyer will consider these factors when building your case. Although whiplash is often not seen as a severe injury, minor whiplash injury settlements often range from $6,000.00 to $100,000.00. Severe whiplash cases resulting in permanent disability or death may exceed the multimillion-dollar range.

How To Make a Claim for Whiplash Injury

There are several procedural steps that you should take following a car accident to ensure the integrity of your whiplash injury claim is upheld. Follow these steps to ensure you get maximum compensation for your injuries.

Seek Medical Attention Immediately

Even if you feel okay, waiting to seek medical attention following an accident is a critical error. Insurance companies will often try to devalue the validity of your claim if medical attention is delayed. Unfortunately, in the case of whiplash or other car accident injuries, pain and issues pertaining to the injuries may not arise until later, after the adrenaline of the crash has faded. It may take over 24 hours for those with whiplash to experience any symptoms. This is why it is best to receive a medical evaluation right away. Experienced medical professionals will know how to spot signs of whiplash right away, even if you are not currently experiencing any symptoms or pain.

Symptoms of whiplash include:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Shoulder, upper back, or arm pain
  • Pain with neck movement
  • Blurred vision
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Depression
  • Memory issues
  • Sleep disturbance
  • Loss of range of motion

Follow All Medical Instructions Give by Your Provider

After receiving medical treatment, you must follow all recommended treatments and steps advised by your doctor. Declining treatment will indicate to insurers that you are not truly injured, nor are you doing everything you can to recover, and will hinder your claim. Ensure that you follow all instructions given to you by your medical provider, which may include:

  • Taking prescription medications or using medical equipment such as a neck brace
  • Taking imaging such as X-rays, CTs, MRIs
  • Attending a follow-up appointment
  • Following up with a specialist

Promptly File a Claim

If you have been the victim of a car accident injury and have been medically diagnosed with whiplash, you need to file a compensation claim immediately. North Carolina is considered an at-fault state. Therefore, if you suffered whiplash in an automobile collision, you may pursue compensation from your insurer, the at-fault driver’s insurer, or from a personal injury claim.

After a car accident injury, it is advisable to begin with a car insurance claim. You may need to file a personal injury lawsuit if you cannot negotiate a fair settlement. When speaking with an insurer, it is best to state only the pertinent facts to answer their questions and avoid discussing the extent of your injuries. The danger of discussing your injuries with an adjuster is that you may appear to verbally minimize your pain or the extent of your injuries, which insurers may later use against you to hinder your claim. In addition, insurance adjusters may obtain your medical records or speak with your doctor to receive the details regarding your injuries.

Collect Medical Documentation

Medical evidence is often the most critical evidence you will require to support your personal injury claim. Medical documentation includes:

  • Medical charts
  • X-rays, CT, MRIs
  • Blood Tests
  • Care summaries
  • Emergency room forms
  • Test results

Contact an Attorney

An experienced whiplash lawyer can assist with gathering evidence and negotiating with insurers to ensure you receive the best settlement possible. In some cases, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit. A personal injury attorney can ensure that your rights are protected through this process and that you receive the most out of your car accident settlement claim.

North Carolina Whiplash Injury Lawyer

The attorneys at Tatum & Atkinson can review your case at no cost to you to assist you with evaluating your legal options. Call (800) 529-0804 or contact us online to discuss how you may build the best case possible to ensure that you receive just compensation for your injuries. A personal injury attorney can speak to the insurance adjusters on your behalf. If we cannot reach a fair settlement, we are prepared to file a personal injury lawsuit to obtain the just compensation you deserve.