Does a pre-existing condition affect a car accident claim when the crash aggravates an old injury?

Many people involved in car accidents find their previous injuries get aggravated by the jolts their bodies sustain upon impact. For instance, maybe an old neck or back injury was made worse in a collision and you may be worried whether an insurance company will compensate you for such injuries.

The first thing you should know is that insurance companies will look for any justification to minimize your claim payout, even if that means denying a claim for an existing injury that was aggravated in the crash. In fact, insurance companies will regularly demand you sign a medical authorization form that will give its investigators access to your past medical records. They do this so they can try and blame a current injury on a past condition to minimize the amount of money they have to pay you.

Even if you were not at fault for the crash, an insurance company will still attempt to use a past injury to lower the amount of compensation it is willing to offer you. However, you should not be penalized for an existing injury that was made worse in a crash that wasn’t your fault.

In order to get a jury to see that the crash was the cause of worsening your pre-existing condition, we will get to work strengthening your case. In order to prove your pre-existing injury was aggravated in the car crash, we will involve medical experts, your doctor’s testimony, and even medical records or tests to show how the collision worsened your condition.

Sometimes it is obvious that the crash was the cause of the current injuries, as a victim may not have made any complaints about a certain body part for years. In other circumstances, an accident victim may be receiving current treatment or physical therapy for a specific body part that was re-injured in the crash. In this situation, a doctor’s narrative (a written statement outlining your diagnosis and prognosis) can help explain to the insurance company—or, if necessary, to a judge and jury—about your old injuries and the details of your new injury.

This is why it is critical that anyone involved in a car accident is honest with his doctor and lawyer about their pre-existing injuries and the pain he is currently experiencing. If aware of a past injury at the beginning of the case, an attorney can actually use a pre-existing condition to a client’s advantage. For help with your case and making sure you get all the money you deserve, please contact our law firm today.