Even the most cynical of us would agree that occasionally accidents do happen. However, more often than not, an ‘accident’ isn’t really an ‘accident’ at all and a certain level of fault for the accident has to be placed squarely on the shoulder of the person who caused the accident. The same is certainly true in the case of a car accident. So, how would you go about getting proper whiplash compensation following a car accident? Unlike other injuries that can occur in a car accident, more often than not the symptoms of whiplash, such as a whiplash neck injury, will not manifest themselves until the morning after. Usually, the accident will cause the whiplash to manifest in the form of:
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-a headache, most likely all over the head with particular emphasis on the back of the head, or the forehead, or behind the eyes of the victim; or
-neck pain; or
-both of the above, with the headache likely to be more painful initially than the neck ache, but with the neck ache likely to be more prolonged and with the chance of this developing into Osteoarthritis in the future. So, with an accident injury of this nature, i.e. one that does not manifest itself immediately, you would think that making a whiplash injury compensation claim would be an extremely onerous task – as causation proof of the injury would be difficult. However, you can make it easier to make a compensation claim for whiplash if you adhere to the following guideline procedures following the accident:
- As Soon As You Can, Write Down Exactly What Happened That Caused The Accident To Happen
When you write your notes about what happened to cause the accident, which you should try and do as soon as you can following the accident. You need to make notes of exactly what happened leading up to the accident, during the accident and subsequent to the accident. You should also take note of:
-what the weather conditions were like (e.g. was it foggy and slippery?)
-what the time was
-whether there were any witnesses who can verify your story
-exactly what you said to the other person(s) involved
If possible you should use your mobile phone camera to take photographs of the damage done to your car and you, as well as of the road surface and the general weather conditions.
- Have A Medical Examination Immediately
Even if you are not feeling too bad following your accident, it can take a few hours, even a sleep, for the symptoms of whiplash to manifest. However, the longer you leave it until you get a medical examination the more chance there will be that the person who caused the accident can say that your injuries could have been caused by something else other than the car accident. Or, worse, the whiplash injuries could have been mitigated if only you had sought medical attention earlier.
To protect both yourself and your potential whiplash injury compensation claim, you should take yourself off to the hospital and have a complete medical examination as soon as you can, following the accident. Once you have had the examination you should ask the doctor to write a report detailing the chances of you having suffered an injury as a result of the accident – including the chances of you having suffered whiplash. If you do this, you may well find that it is a lot harder for the person who caused your injury to claim that the whiplash was the cause of anything but their actions. Keep in mind that whiplash injuries can have lasting effects. They can also have a very dramatic effect on your life – especially if they manifest into Osteoarthritis. So do not take a potential whiplash injury lightly and make sure that you protect any future rights that you may have to bring a whiplash injury claim.