What do I do if I was in an auto accident and I have been diagnosed with whiplash?

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What do I do if I was in an auto accident and I have been diagnosed with whiplash?

I was in an auto accident last week. The person that hit me was at fault and has insurance. My neck and back started hurting the next day. I went to the hospital and was told I have whiplash. I am hurting very bad and can’t perform my daily duties without taking pain medicine. I have not heard from the man’s insurance, even though I have called them. Should I speak with a personal injury attorney? In Franklin County, OH.

Asked on September 7, 2011 under Personal Injury, Ohio

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

It would be advisable to speak with a personal injury attorney.  The pain medicine is not the solution.  You will need physical therapy to recover from whiplash.  The personal injury attorney can refer you to a doctor who will take the case on a lien basis.  This means the doctor is paid out of the settlement of the case.  When you complete your medical treatment and are released by the doctor, obtain the medical bills, medical reports, and documentation of wage loss.  Your personal injury claim will consist of the medical bills, medical reports and documentation of wage loss. Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your injuries and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering.  Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance company, reject the settlement offers and sue the at-fault driver for negligence.  If the case is settled with the insurance company, no lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled with the insurance company, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault driver prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or you will lose your rights forever in the matter.

The property damage (compensation for repairs to your car) is separate from the personal injury claim.  The property damage is usually resolved with the other driver's insurance company early in the case. 


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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