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Why victims should make personal injury claims for whiplash

14th May 2010
By Mason Linger in Personal Injury
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Accidents happen all the time; whiplash is one of the most common injuries people sustain during a car crash. If someone is negligent and they damage your health, you have the right to make personal injury claims.

Whiplash is caused when the head is jolted backwards or forwards and it's most commonly associated with motor collisions. It happens in a fifth of motor accidents, even at low speed. Symptoms include stiffness, swelling and pain in the neck, back and shoulders. The onset of whiplash can be delayed; some people don't feel it until a couple of days after the accident. The pain normally lasts for a few days, but it can persist. It has the potential to lead to severe disability; in 10% of car accident induced whiplash injuries, it causes long term disability.

In the majority of cases people are reluctant to make a personal injury claim, but they shouldn't be. If the accident wasn't your fault; if you were driving but didn't cause the accident, if you were a passenger, of if you were travelling in a bus or taxi, you already have a strong case to build your compensation claim on.

The world of personal injury claims is often misunderstood. It's not about greedy parties trying to make money from someone's mistake; whiplash injuries can cost a lot of time and money, and the purpose of personal injury claims is to compensate for that. You might have to pay money for medication or physiotherapy, and if you consider that alongside a loss in earnings if you're forced to take time off, you can see how expensive the cost of someone else's mistake can be. Making a personal injury claim will allow you to try and recoup these expenses.

The people involved in car accidents are often in shock immediately afterwards, and might not feel any pain straight away. It's important to get checked over by a doctor after an accident, as a precaution, to ensure you aren't injured in any way. Even if you hadn't considered making a personal injury claim, it's still paramount that you make sure you aren't injured for the sake of your own health.

The best time to make a claim is at the earliest opportunity after the crash, but victims are given three years from the time of the accident to make a claim.

At the scene of the accident you should swap details with all parties involved so that you are able to notify your insurer. Having these details will help with making a claim in the future, even if you don't think you want to at the time.

The most important thing to remember when making personal injury claims is that you should hire someone to help you with the process, because it's often complex. Insurance companies are notorious for making early offers to settle in cases of whiplash, but you should always seek advice, at the very least, before considering any offer of personal injury compensation.

Mason Linger is a renowned author on various law related articles. For more information on personal injury claim lawyers, please visit
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